Coquille Valley Builders


Search Aids

Search Terms

(Use for computer searches)

·        Coos County Pioneers

·        Coquille Valley Settlers

Subject Headings

(Use in card catalogs and print indexes)

·        Coos County (Or.) -- Biography

·        Coos County (Or.) -- History

·        Frontier and Pioneer Life -- Oregon


Call Number

·        979.523 Coos County (Dewey Decimal)

·        978 Frontier & Pioneer Life

·        910.92 Pioneers

·        F 884.C (Library of Congress)


Key to Library Holdings*

·        Bndn – Bandon Public Library

·        CBay – Coos Bay Public Library

·        Coq – Coquille Public Library

·        Dora – Dora Public Library

·        MP – Myrtle Point Public Library

·        NB – North Bend Public Library

·        Powers – Powers Public Library

·        SWOCC – SW Oregon Community College Library

·        Coos Hist Soc  – Coos Maritime and Historical Society

·        Coquille Valley Museum

* Names in bold type have copies to check out. Regular type indicates library use only. 


February 2010


The pathfinder will help you locate information on the Coquille Valley pioneers – those individuals and families who moved settled in the Coquille Valley between 1901 and 1950.

"This was an interesting time to live as there were so many things going on and so many new things to see and talk about. There seemed to be a shortage of help, just plain common labor as well as skilled, and if something had to be done in a hurry you either did it yourself or had to wait to get help to do it." Lee L. Stonecypher, “These Fast Changing Times”, c1980  


Key Resources at a Glance:

  • Pioneers and Incidents of the Upper Coquille Valley, 1890 - 1940 by Alice Wooldridge (1971).

A collection of obituaries and anecdotes as printed in the early Myrtle Point newspapers that referred to the original pioneers of the upper Coquille Valley (Myrtle Point, Arago, the Forks, Stringtown, Bridge, Rowland’s Prairie and Broadbent). An index to this book is available online here.


Library Holdings:

Bndn   CBay   Coq    Dora  MP   NB   Powers   SWOCC

Coos Hist Society    Coquille Valley Museum


  • Centennial History of Coos and Curry County : History of Southwest Oregon by Emil R. Peterson (1952).

A collection of biographies, antidotes and recollections from throughout Coos and Curry Counties.


Library Holdings:

Bndn   CBay   Coq    Dora  MP   NB   Powers   SWOCC

Coos Hist Society    Coquille Valley Museum


  • The Coos Bay region, 1890 – 1944: life on a coastal frontier by Nathan Douthit (1986).

A definitive book on frontier life along the Southern Oregon coast, with a written history going back to the 1890's and an abundance of pictures.


Library Holdings:

CBay  MP   NB  Coos Hist Society   



1900-1930 Census | Obituaries | SSDI | OR Vital Records | CA Vital Records | Indexes | | Worldconnect | LDS | Rootsweb Lists | OR-ROOTS Listserv



Web Pages and Web Portals

The Coos County Library system has a subscription to Proquest, which includes an online copy of the Coos County Census originals. This material is indexed, but only by the head of household name. Transcription errors, both on the part of the census taken and the index transcriber abound, so the researcher is reminded to try variant spellings and to search by geographic area as well as by name. A valid Coastline library card is required to use this service online. But access is also available in the public libraries.

The Coquille Valley website includes links to other Coos County organizations, as well as a wealth of local information. Newly transcribed material is added on a regular basis. Consult the Site Map for a summary of material on the site as well as an up-to-date list of new material.

The goal of is to help researchers track your ancestors through time by transcribing genealogical and historical data for the free use of all researchers.

The Obituary Daily Times is a daily index of published obituaries. It is distributed FREELY, often twice a day by email, and usually has over 2500 entries a day. You can search the database anytime with the search engine above.

Locating where people lived

This site will provide you with realistic and practical advice about home history research and where to find relevant material in Coos County. You will also find help with Architectural History as well as genealogical research.

For people living in the city limits

  • R.L. Polk & Company Directories (and other publishers)

Starting in 1904-05, R.L. Polk & Company began issuing directories which include information on the cities in Coos County. The early directories not only list the name of the individual, but their spouse’s name, the occupation of the individual and where they worked, as well as their home address. The directories tried to capture everyone above the age of 18, so they often show adult children who are still living at home. None of these directories circulate outside of the library. To request a lookup of in one of these directories, please see below:
Library Holdings:
1904-1905     CBay  MP          1926-1927     CBay
1907-1908     CBay  NB          1936              CBay
1913-1914     CBay  NB          1938              CBay  NB
1916-1917     CBay  MP          1940              CBay  NB
1918-1919     CBay                  1946         CBay  NB
1922              NB                     1948     CBay  NB
1924              CBay  NB

For people not living in the city limits

The simplest description I’ve located for understanding Townships, Range and Sections.

Digital Copies of the Survey Maps for Oregon, produced by the General Land Office from about 1855 through 1910. These are large JPEG images in .zip files (1-2.5MB), but these maps not only show property boundaries, but often list the land owner’s name and occasionally even show the location of the house on the claim.

Image access to more than two million Federal land title records for Eastern Public Land States, issued between 1820 and 1908. These records include only the ‘proved’ land claims. Once you have located the patent information, you can request copies of the application from the National Archives. For ‘unproved’ or sold claims, you can request lookups from the tract books also held in the National Archives using the same link.

Additional Books

  • Some cemetery records of Coos and Curry counties Oregon : the Alice Hoover Wooldridge collection, by The Genealogical Forum of Portland (1982).

List of cemeteries indexed in this book:

Allegany, Bandon Catholic, Bandon IOOF, Bandon Knights of Pythias, Bandon Pioneer, Bear Creek, Beaver Hill, Brack, Breen, Breuer, Bullard, Catching Creek, Clarno Springs, Collver, Cook, Coos River Pioneer, Coquille IOOF, Coquille Masonic, Coquille Pioneer, Davis, Dement, Dora, Eddy, Eden Valley, Edson, Enchanted Prairie, Fairview, Fetter, Fox Bridge a.k.a. Lee Valley, GAR Bandon, Garrett, Gibbs, Grandma Wells, Gravelford, Green, Greene, Haines, Hansen, Hayes, Haynes, Hermann, Hoffman, Hultin-Thrush, IOOF, Lakeside, Lampa Creek, Lett, Lowery, Mast, Masters, McGlone, Merriman, Miller, Morris, Myrtle Creek, Myrtle Point, Neal, Norris-Barker, Norway, Old Empire, Old Pioneer, Pallaske, Parkersburg, Pioneer, Poland, Powers, Quosanta Creek, Rackleff, Randolph, Red Barn, Riverton, Robbins, Robison, Russell, Sacchi, Skaggs, Skookum House, Smith, South Slough, Steward, Sumner School, Templeton, Thomas, Upper Fish Trap, Warner, Wasson, Waterman,  West, Whittington, Wigent Family, Wise, Wheeler, Yoakum Family


Library Holdings:   CBay    Coq    Dora   MP    NB   Powers  


  • The Coquille Valley, Volumes 1 and 2, by Patti and Hal Strain (2009).

Vol. 1. Background history -- The first people -- Views of earliest settlers -- Preface to early communities -- North Fork watershed -- East Fork watershed -- Middle Fork watershed -- South Fork watershed -- Coquille's main stem, below Myrtle Point -- Coquille's main stem, below Beaver Hill -- The county and the economy -- Post offices: a lifeline home -- Newspapers -- Trade, travel, timber -- Organizations and service clubs -- Valley medical services -- Accidents turn tragic -- Dreadful people, dreadful deeds -- List of Coquille Valley's World War Two veterans -- Appreciation, authors quoted, why research? -- Chronology and index. Vol. 2. Ancestor review


Library Holdings:   CBay    Coq    MP    NB     


  • My Valley, by Boyd Stone (2008).

"I originally wrote the stories over a twelve year period, between 1991 and 2003 for history articles that were printed in The Coquille Valley Sentinel, The Myrtle Point Herald, and Bandon's Western World. For this book I have combined stories ... adding more information that has come to light since they were first written, made a few corrections, and attempted to put them in some kind of order. “ Boyd Stone


Library Holdings:   SWOCC    Bandon    CBay    Dora    MP     


·        Oregon Historical Quarterly

·        Coos Genealogical Society

Organizations and Special Collections

·        ORCOOS-L ListServ

ORCOOS is a forum for Coos County researchers to assist each other in locating and researching Coos County biographies, obituaries, vital records, photographs and to share stories of Coos County ancestors.

To Subscribe: Send an email message to In the message ***subject*** put either "subscribe" (for regular version--without the quotes) or "subscribe digest" (for the digest version--without the quotes). Send your questions to after you have subscribed.

·        OR-ROOTS ListServ

OR-ROOTS is a list for discussion of research and writing about Oregon genealogy and family history. OR-ROOTS is an electronic forum where genealogists can share the results of research, assist newcomers to the field, inquire about the location of resources, debate issues, raise questions, and learn about current events in the field.

To Subscribe: Send an email message to In the message ***subject*** put either "subscribe" (for regular version--without the quotes) or "subscribe digest" (for the digest version--without the quotes). Send your questions to the same address after you have subscribed to have the other list members help you in your research.

·        Coquille Valley Historical Society

The Coquille Valley Historical Society meets on the first and third Thursday of the month at 6:30 pm in the Coquille Valley Museum in Coquille. Meetings focus on sharing new historical items donated to the museum and on business related to running the society and museum.

·        Coquille Valley Genealogy Club

The Coquille Valley Genealogy Club meets on the first Thursday of the month at 7:00pm in the Myrtle Point Library. Meetings include guest speakers and a chance to share historical information about the area with others, as well as refreshments.

Multimedia Resources and Photographs

  • When everybody was working. (Powers Historical Society, Powers, Oregon. 1989 ) [VHS]

Features the Coos Bay Lumber Company and lots of historical footage of the logging industry circa 1900. Narrated by former lumber workers.

A copy of this document, in a Microsoft Word format, is available here.

Copyright 2006-2010 – Robyn Greenlund.
For historical and genealogical purposes only. Commercial use of any portion of this site is prohibited. The Pathfinder Project was funded in part by Library Services and Technology Act money administered through the State Library of Iowa.

Additional resources, comments and/or corrections are welcomed.