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Lumber Baron Starts Anew in Green Springs East of Ashland, Ore.

Starting out at age 17 as a horse trader, James Everett Henry spent a lifetime building a lumber empire, buying forests in his native New Hampshire, building lumber and paper mills and power stations to run them and railroads to ship their products.  In his late 70s he retired around 1908 and handed his business empire to his three sons. They sold the business for millions in 1917, and one of them, John H. Henry,  retired to Pasadena, Calif., with his wife, daughter and son, John B. Henry.

The mother of John B. Henry, John B. for short, paved the way through life for him. She founded a local military academy and when John B. graduated from that she founded a preparatory school, where he graduated and went to Dartmouth College in New Hampshire.  His mom couldn’t have planned for what happened next.
During semester break, John B. hired on as a mill hand.  When it became obvious he wouldn’t be returning to college, his father left the comforts of retirement in 1927 and bought 4,000 acres in the Green Springs area east of Ashland, Ore., where he and John B. built a new lumber empire.

Sources: Foley, Anne E. Lincoln on the Greensprings. Medford, Oregon: Southern Oregon Historical Society, 1985. Print.

Christopher Shockey has been a long-time JPR listener and contributor. He lives on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley with his wife, Kristen. He enjoys supporting both the Southern Oregon Historical Society and JPR by digging up regional stories for As It Was.