July 11, 2020
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Board of Commissioners' Public Hearing to Consider Renaming Dead Indian Memorial Road

The Jackson County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing to consider changing the name of Dead Indian Memorial Road.  The public hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. in the Jackson County Courthouse Auditorium, 10 South Oakdale Avenue, Medford, Oregon. 

A name under consideration is “Indian Memorial Road,” which would simply drop the word “Dead” from the existing name.  However, following the public hearing, the Board of Commissioners could choose to make no change, they could change the name to the proposed name, or they could select an entirely new name.

Dead Indian Memorial Road reportedly received its name when settlers found several dead Native Americans on a prairie in the area in 1855.  It is unknown how they died, but common speculation suggested they were attacked from a neighboring Native American tribe.   Several natural features in the area were named “Dead Indian,” and a mountain and creek in the area still carry that name.  A more complete and detailed history may be found in an April 30, 2017 Mail Tribune article written by John Darling, “Legend of Dead Indian Memorial Road.” .

Historically the road was commonly known as Dead Indian Road, but the Jackson County Board of Commissioners added the word “Memorial” to the road’s name in 1993.  “The County receives frequent complaints and requests to change the name of this road,” noted John Vial, Director of the County Road Department.  Vial added, “However, changing a road name can be disruptive to those citizens living on the road and the County Board of Commissioners is interested in hearing from all sides to determine if a change should be made.” 

If you would like to provide input to the Board of Commissioners for their consideration, you may provide up to five minutes of oral testimony at the public hearing on October 11 or provide written testimony.  Written testimony may be provided by: email to; fax to 541-774-6295; or mail to Jackson County Roads, 200 Antelope Road, White City, Oregon, 97503.  Written testimony should be received by 5:00 p.m. on October 6, 2017, in order to reach the Commissioners for consideration prior to the public hearing.  Written testimony may also be submitted directly to the Board of Commissioners during the public hearing on October 11th.  If providing written testimony, please include your name and mailing address with the testimony.

If a physical accommodation is needed to participate in a County meeting, please contact the Human Resources Office at 541-774-6036 or TTY/TDD 711 or 800-735-2900.  Notification of at least 48 hours prior to the meeting, preferably in writing, will assist County staff in providing reasonable accommodation.


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