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Prospect began as a logging town; its first sawmill began operating in 1870. Prospect had a post office established in 1882 that was first named "Deskins" after the first postmaster. In 1888, there was a mill named Deskins Sawmill. The name of the community was changed to "Prospect" in 1889 because of plans made to run a railroad up the Rogue River, which would ostensibly improve the community's prospects.
As of 2013, the population of the community was 650.
Local events and sites of interest
On the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, Prospect holds the Mill Creek Memorial festival. It honors veterans with a parade, a flag retirement ceremony, live music and games for children. All the proceeds go to a fund to help vets.
In July Prospect hosts an airplane "fly-in" that helps support the Jackson County Search and Rescue, and in August a jamboree and timber carnival (a festival that includes lumberjack contests such as log rolling) are held.
On the last weekend in September, Prospect hosts Music in the Mountains, a two-day festival of bluegrass, country, folk and Americana music on the grounds of the Prospect Hotel.
This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Prospect has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.
- Moffatt, Riley Moore (1996). Population History of Western U.S. Cities and Towns, 1850–1990. Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press. p. 214. ISBN 978-0-8108-3033-2.
- "Prospect". Shady Cove – Upper Rogue Chamber. Retrieved August 30, 2013.
- McArthur, Lewis A.; Lewis L. McArthur (2003) . Oregon Geographic Names (7th ed.). Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. pp. 786–87. ISBN 0-87595-277-1.
- "Oregon National Register List" (PDF). Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. June 6, 2011. Retrieved August 31, 2007.
- "Prospect Hotel Music Festival". Prospect Hotel. Retrieved August 30, 2013.
- Oregon Atlas & Gazeteer (7th ed.). Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. 2008. p. 62. ISBN 978-0-89933-347-2.
- Climate Summary for Prospect, Oregon
- History of the Prospect Hotel
- Prospect State Scenic Viewpoint
- Early resident of Prospect mentions "Deskins Sawmill"
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