A good place to start your explorations is at the Jacksonville Museum (206 N. 5th St., www.sohs.org, 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Wed.–Sat., $5 adults, $3 seniors and children 3–12), which holds the collection of the Southern Oregon Historical Society (SOHS). This imposing two-story brick-and-stone Italianate building, completed in 1883, served as the county administration building until 1925, when the county seat was moved to Medford.
Nowadays, in addition to pioneer artifacts, a mock-up of pioneer photographer Peter Britt’s studio, and interesting old pictures, the museum also has a good walking-tour map of the other historical sites in the city.
The stucco building next door to the courthouse used to be the county jail, but it serves today as the children’s museum. Kids of all ages will enjoy hands-on play with old-fashioned toys. A small bookstore called the History Store, specializing in local and regional historical publications, is located here as well.
An adjunct to the museum, the C. C. Beekman House (California St. and Laurelwood St., noon–4 p.m. Sat. summer, confirm winter hours with Jacksonville Museum) offers guided tours of an 1870s home that was left with nearly all of its period furnishings intact.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel