As I drove down 11th avenue, I drove through the students and on to a more community based neighborhood, Jefferson Westside. The streets were fairly busy, and most of the streets and side streets were, too. There were houses in between businesses. There was everything from a bakery, Sweet Life, to a tire store, Wyatt’s Tires. From what it seemed like, the Jefferson Westside Neighborhood seemed like a fairly busy and not given a chance to be a tight-nit community like other neighborhoods. When doing the new neighborhood blog on the Jefferson Westside neighborhood, I decided to check out the Lane County Historical Society Museum.
Lane County Historical Society Museum is located on the corner of 13th and Jefferson. It was hard to find amidst the other random businesses nearby with a few houses in between. It cost a few bucks to get in, but over all I would say it was worth it.
Just like every town, Eugene started from somewhere. It is an old town, and the museum shows the history of how the city was built. There were photographs everywhere, and archives of records of past businesses, projects, schools, and especially families. There was also an interesting archive of old newspaper articles that was included as well.
Most of the photos were of families and of the production of Lane County, for example, building streets, neighborhoods, businesses, etc.
The non-profit organization that runs the museum not only shows the history throughout its exhibits and archives, but also has a tri-yearly newsletter that explains the history of Lane County called the “Lane County Historian”.
To spice up the exhibits a bit, there was a cafe and a gift shop for visitors. The gift shop contained different pieces of artwork, postcards, different books (children books, too) about Lane County and Oregon and even old-fashioned children toys.
The museum also explains the history of the Oregon Trail and Lewis and Clark’s expedition throughout Oregon, and how Lane County was involved.
Not only is the museum for visitors, residents of the Eugene area, and tourists, but is also a popular site for school field trips. The museum gives teachers different slide-shows to choose from to teach their students about Lane County when they take their students to the museum.
As exciting as a town’s museum can get, I decided to leave after about 20 minutes of browsing around. The neighborhood seemed fairly busy and not very family or community friendly. From what I noticed, it would not be a neighborhood where I would get to know my neighbors very well or have an easy time settling down.