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Larry Smith

Larry is a busy guy who we are lucky to have on our board of directors. He and his twin brother Lloyd were born in Los Angeles where they lived for the first 6 years of their lives.

Their father soon tired of life in southern California and relocated their family to a small farm in Phoenix (Oregon). The brothers spent all 12 years of their public school education at Phoenix Schools.

Larry attended both Southern Oregon College (SOU) and LeTourneau College (LU) graduating with three degrees in Engineering and Elementary Education. While attending college, Larry began working as a seasonal Park Ranger at Crater Lake National Park in 1961, where he is beginning his 45th season, now as a volunteer park ranger. 

Larry taught 5th grade at Jacksonville School for 33 years, and field classes for both S.O.U. Antioch University and Elder Hostel. 

Larry Smith has spent the past 16 years helping create the Jacksonville Woodlands, eight miles of interpretive and recreational trails on 320 acres in Jacksonville.  Mail Tribune / Jim Craven

He has been awarded four national teaching awards recognizing his support of environmental education. In 1989 Larry helped found the Jacksonville Woodlands Association and is currently serving as Executive Director. During the past 16 years the Woodlands Association has preserved 21 parcels of woodlands totaling 320 acres surrounding Historic Jacksonville, Oregon.

Larry retired in 2000, but he still teaches part-time for the Medford School District and conducts Crater Lake and Jacksonville field trips for school classes, tour busses, and community groups. Plus he serves on several boards and community committees, including the board of the Crater Lake Institute and the Jacksonville Parks Committee.

As a young child Larry’s Grandmother Smith instilled in him the love of family history, something that he still enjoys researching and writing about today.

He has completed the writing of 10 volumes of family history and is presently working on a four-volume set of the Smith line.

Larry and Linda have been married for 40 years; have one son and one daughter and five grandkids.

Larry has worked hard to make the Jacksonville Woodlands a conservation success story for Jacksonville, Oregon.

Larry can be credited with initiating the first effort to compile the park’s history in an easily digestible format. It started as an extension of a report type that the NPS once called an “important event log,” but continual growth and refinement soon brought about The Smith Brothers’ Chronological History of Crater Lake National ParkHe and his twin brother Lloyd have contributed to park programs in many ways, most recently as volunteers in the Friends of Crater Lake. Larry served as an interpretive ranger at Crater Lake National Park.

See Larry's online Oral History transcript.

Larry Smith-related news articles:


Mountain Climber Brian Smith - May 24, 2007

Mountain climber Brian Smith, a 1988 graduate of South Medford High School, reached the top of Mount Everest at exactly 2:50 a.m. today Nepalese time in dark and cold conditions.  Note: Brian is the son Larry.


Shadow Everest: Brian Smith  April 27, 2007

Brian Smith's chest is racked by coughing spasms. His cuts don't heal in the thin air. He wakes each morning inside his tent with his sleeping bag covered with ice. And he is bone tired.  Note: Brian is the son Larry.


Brian Smith plans to answer call of world's highest peak - December 31, 2006

"Mountain climbing gives you a chance to know yourself," explains the veteran climber who graduated from South Medford High School in 1988. "You are totally alone in your thoughts. And, of course, the views are amazing...  Note: Brian is the son of one of the CLI's board members, Larry Smith. Go Brian!


History into Stories - July, 2006

For years, Larry Smith has been Jacksonville's unofficial historian.  Come September, however, he will be officially recognized by the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) with the Leadership in History Award.  The AASLH Awards Program recognizes excellent achievements in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and local history throughout North America.


Festival blooms in Jacksonville - April 7, 2005

"The warm weather of February pushed the normal blooming time forward by two weeks," says Jacksonville Woodlands Association President Larry Smith.


Teacher takes lesson out doors celebrating woods of Jacksonville - February 7, 2005

As Larry Smith discusses his twin passions — teaching kids and preserving Jacksonville’s woodlands — his eyes reflect both soft sentiment and steely determination


Larry Smith (left) and his brother Lloyd (right) as rangers at Crater Lake National Park


Lloyd Smith (left) and his brother Larry (right), Jacksonville, OR, 2005





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