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National Register Lists Williams, Ore., Residence


A residence near Williams, Ore., owned for a time by rock musician Steve Miller, was added to the National Register of Historic Places on May 18, 2015.

A pair of Southwest archaeologists, William and Sarah (Wagner) Lippincott, built the house in 1951 on more than 800 acres they owned between 1948 and 1955.  The residence sits on land homesteaded in the 1850’s by Simon Messinger. 

The 4,600-square-foot home overlooks a manmade reservoir on 420 acres owned today by the nonprofit nature retreat known as “Pacifica: a garden in the Siskiyous,” which includes the Forestfarm nursery.

The home’s architect, Winifred Scott Wellington, utilized vertical grain Redwood and Arizona stone in the design. The wood-frame, single-story residence is considered one of the finest examples of post-World War II contemporary architecture in Southern Oregon.

Miller owned the property between 1976 and 1986, before moving to a ranch in the Grants Pass outback.  The nationally prominent rock musician known for recordings like “Fly Like an Eagle,” and “The Joker,” built a state-of-the-art recording studio used today as the nature reserve offices.

A 500-acre forest fire came within 10 feet of the structures in 2013.

Source: "Oregon Parks & Recreation Department: Oregon Heritage: National Register ." Oregon.gov. Oregon State Parks, Web. 9 June 2015. .

Kernan Turner is the Southern Oregon Historical Society’s volunteer editor and coordinator of the As It Was series broadcast daily by Jefferson Public Radio. A University of Oregon journalism graduate, Turner was a reporter for the Coos Bay World and managing editor of the Democrat-Herald in Albany before joining the Associated Press in Portland in 1967. Turner spent 35 years with the AP before retiring in Ashland.