Applegate Homestead & Big-K Ranch

July 7, 1999

Recognizing the Applegate Trail’s importance, this trip was designed to go over back roads as much as possible. Leaving. I-5, we toured Main Street and River Road to Cottage Grove, out the London Road past the Reservoir to the crossroads of London, up the Shoestring Road (the old stage coach route) over the mountain into Douglas County, under I-5 to Yoncalla and the Applegate Homestead, arriving at 9:45 a.m. Shannon Applegate, the noted author and chronicler of what is sometimes called Oregon’s First Family, presented a most interesting talk and guided tour of the grounds and house. Preservation of this historic landmark (the Tennessee style two-story house separated vertically between the genders) dates from the 1850s. The Applegate Foundation is responsible for its protection and maintenance and is dependent on private financial support. This was a memorable visit for both first time and repeat riders. Thirty miles to the Big-K Ranch for lunch in their beautiful dining room, complete with a grand view of the Umpqua River and the meadows and hills surrounding it. Shannon and her mother were our honored guests for lunch. Homeward bound — stopping at the City Park in Drain to check out the covered bridges, followed by a drive-by the Drain Castle, newly painted an Addams Family green. Then north on the Territorial Road, through Lorane, east on Hamm Road to Creswell and back to Eugene by 5:30 p.m. Larry Edwards of Oregon Coachways did a great job, as usual, over some difficult, winding gravel roads.

Riders were: Ethel Allen, Rita Baxter, Sally Bethel, Jean Blankenship, Ingrid Carmichael, Leona Devine, Dora Harris, Maggie Howell, Jean Jensen, Helen Knowlton, Beverly Leach, John & Lenore McManigal, Barbara & Walt Miller, Joyce Mixer, Dick & Rose Marie Moffitt, Elaine & Sherman Nordquist, Adrienne Norris, Hazel Peck, Pat Peterson, Betty & Harvey Speck, Dick & Janet Speelman, Ida Speague, Diane & Hazel Standfield, Paulette Thompson, Marjorie Townes, Kayte Wagner, Mary Ellen West and leaders Ray Jensen & Liz Reanier.

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