Story from LC Historical Society
Imagine watching film clips of “Sometimes a Great Notion” and “The Russians Are Coming; The Russians Are Coming,” to “Friday Night Lights,” then mix in some Paul Bunyan tales and you’d have Lincoln County’s humorous historian Lonnie Headrick.
Headrick will be entertaining and informing at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, in the Carriage House of the Lincoln County Historical Society in Newport. “Tall Tales by Lonnie the Logger” will feature Headrick’s memories of Lincoln City and the surrounding area in the 1930s and 1940s. The program is free and open to the public.
Standing 6’7” since the seventh grade, Headrick was ten years old when he came to Taft in 1937. His family was following the timber. Headrick lived many schoolboy and teen adventures, especially with numerous work opportunities for “a big kid” during World War II.
Headrick played All-State Football, graduated from Taft High School in 1946, played basketball at Oregon State and then came home to join Headrick Brothers Logging operation up the Siletz River. He married the “dancing gal” he met at the Oceanlake Dance Hall, and they raised three children while following timber to the Redwoods. Headrick tried other careers but kept returning to the tall trees. He and his wife, Goldie, returned to Lincoln City to enjoy retirement.
While having coffee with Mick and Patsy McLean in the same church where he and Goldie were married, Headrick began telling stories, some as wide as Headrick’s seven-foot arm span. The McLeans were prompted to visit newspaper archives at the North Lincoln County Historical Museum to verify some of the facts.
The McLeans gathered these stories, which give a priceless picture of Lincoln City in the 1930s and 40s, a greater appreciation for the loggers and other pioneers in the area, and great respect for this gentle giant whose enthusiasm for life and a good time in any circumstance is contagious. The stories are the foundation for Headrick’s performance. Mick McLean assists in the presentation.
The Lincoln County Historical Society, which includes the Burrows House and Log Cabin museums, is located at 545 SW Ninth Street in Newport.