The New Era - All about Sweet Home since 1929

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Articles written by Roberta Mckern

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 By Roberta McKern    News    December 1, 2021 

Scraps reveal plenty about local history

If we want to be impressed by the transitory nature of history at the East Linn Museum, we can examine notes and newspaper clippings about our area compiled by Lois Rice about 50 years ago. Rice, of...

 

Cattle tracks through history at the East Linn Museum

As we meander through the East Linn Museum, we likely don't have cattle in mind until we come across lariats, saddles, mohair chaps and a branding iron in its tack room. Although some of the branding...

 

'Shooting anvils,' medicine shows and a cold murder case

At the East Linn Museum, it gladdens the researcher to come across an anecdote-filled history about a family that settled here in 1852 (and its descendants). Alvin and Polly Morris homesteaded on Fern...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    August 25, 2021

Roberta McKern: Exploring the era of plastics at East Linn Museum

In the mid-1940s, following World War II, an optimistic announcement declared that the era of plastics had arrived. In reality, plastics of some sort had been around since 1869, when John Wesley...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    July 28, 2021

Queen Victoria's influence lives on at museum

When we enter the East Linn Museum, thoughts of England's Queen Victoria don't come readily to mind. Still, her era's influences directly reflect on our area and many of the artifacts on display...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    June 30, 2021

'Niceties' from the past abound at East Linn Museum

The East Linn Museum contains many niceties. The first, of course, is its research room’s historical materials. The many articles in the museum’s collection reflect the lives of those who settled...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    May 26, 2021

Minor mysteries add spice to life at East Linn Museum

"Which way?" "I think that's upside down." "Wait, something's stuck in there." "Looks like a piece of cork." "It won't shake loose." "No. I'll see if I can get it. I think I can." Two lady volunteers...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    April 28, 2021

Oregon pioneers took the trail to where grass was greener

A book entitled "The Willamette Valley: Migration and Settlement on the Oregon Frontier" can be located in the research room of the East Linn Museum with a little effort. Written by geographer...

 

Museum harbors truths about lye and washerwoman blues

We hear the phrase "The more things change, the more they stay the same," and often we nod and echo, "Yes, yes." Should we? Likely not. Things do not hold steady and unchanged, as we can easily tell...

 

Old bottles tell all manner of tales from days of yore

This is a tale of old bottles. Once, a pair of 5-year-old twins lived in a little house with their mother and father and younger sister and brother. About two blocks south flowed a small river. On an...

 

Former forest ranger's local history a go-to for stories of old

Roy Elliott's 1971 book, "Profiles of Progress," ranks high on the favorite book list at the East Linn Museum. The best history of Sweet Home in the museum's research room, it includes sketches of...

 

Calapooia River has wound its way through lot of local history

In the East Linn Museum a large, hand-drawn map of Linn County backs a partition of the household room near the rear exit sign. Most of us would not notice it if our attention were not directed...

 

'Shooting anvils,' medicine shows and a cold murder case

At the East Linn Museum, it gladdens the researcher to come across an anecdote-filled history about a family that settled here in 1852 (and its descendants). Alvin and Polly Morris homesteaded on Fern...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    July 1, 2020

Museum parlor walls contain memories, mysteries

Let us suppose, for a moment, that you are back in the early parts of the 20th century, attending a family gathering at Grandma's. Grandpa is there, too, but the house is always thought of as...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    January 1, 2020

Museum collection includes echoes of Christmases past

If fantasies about museums came true, in the quiet and darkness around midnight or early morning as we wait, from a display case we might hear the high, sweet voices of children singing Christmas...

 

Museum’s collection has strong representation from local logging heritage

For The New Era “This is a logging town, so why don’t you have more about logging?” a recent visitor to East Linn Museum asked. Actually, the museum has quite a few logging artifacts in the hall... Full story

 

Despite family tragedy, mill owners played large role in community

In last month’s column I wrote about time’s alteration of a one-mile stretch of Highway 228 running west from the Crawfordsville Bridge and taking in a popular swimming hole sometimes called local...

 

Saw display offers flashbacks to days of old in the woods

If you were to ask, “Where can I find an intriguing collection of crosscut and chain saws?” a good answer is the East Linn Museum. Passing through the main room toward the back, you enter a...

 

Museum's quilt collection tells stories from history

On a chilled night, when rain mutters across the roof and grumbles down the gutters and a fog-bound wind plucks at the windows and doors, comes a realization: The best place to be is in bed, curled... Full story

 

Finally: The true story of why firemen wear red suspenders

This month we continue with some excerpts from the very interesting book “The Golden Arrow and Other Stories” by Frances Isobel Horner, part of our collection at East Linn Museum. I’ve selected... Full story

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    April 28, 2015

Digging Treasure at East Linn Museum: Portrait collection a good way to remember key figures of the past

For The New Era Most people want to be remembered and to remember others, especially when it comes to family. Until the 19th century, only the well-to-do held the option of posing for painted...

 
 By Roberta McKern    News    March 26, 2014

Museum’s collection of telephones brings back memories

Right up there with household electricity and the automobile, surely one of the big transformers of the 20th century was the rise of the telephone. Alexander Graham Bell is generally credited with...

 

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