Port Orford in Curry County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
Building Community Cornerstones
Patrick and Jane Hughes' strong support of education and religion helped their children and community flourish.
The third Hughes son, John, studied in the east for the priesthood and was ordained in 1895. He was remembered fondly for telling stories of his happy childhood on the ranch.
Oregon’s pioneers had to build or make almost everything they needed,
including schools and churches. Like many in the area, Patrick and Jane were devout Roman Catholics, and the church they built for traveling priests was a cornerstone of their growing community. They hired Pehr Johan Lindberg, who would also build the Hughes' new house, to build the church. They called it Mary, Star of the Sea.
After Jane Hughes' funeral in 1923, the church was seldom used and fell into disrepair.
Good ol’ Golden Rule days
This area had no schools for pioneer children in the 1860s and 70s. The eldest Hughes son, Edward, was sent to Vancouver, Washington for a formal education. Upon his return, he taught his younger siblings
In 1881, the Hughes built a small school for children of the area, affectionately known as "Cape Blanco University." Teachers were paid $35 to $50 dollars per month, plus room and board.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial Sites • Churches & Religion • Education • Settlements & Settlers.
Location. 42° 50.466′ N, 124° 32.618′ W. Marker is in Port Orford, Oregon, in Curry County. Marker is on Cape Blanco Road west of Oregon Coast Highway (U.S. 101), on the right when traveling west. Marker is located at the entrance to Cape Blanco Pioneer Cemetery, (AKA Hughes Family Cemetery), near the historic Hughes house, inside Cape Blanco State Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 91816 Cape Blanco Road, Sixes OR 97476, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lifeline to the Past (approx. ¼ mile away); The Pioneer Will ... and the Pioneer Way (approx. ¼ mile away); We Have a River in Common (approx. 0.3 miles away); Toward a New Century (approx. 0.3 miles away); a different marker also named Lifeline to the Past (approx. 0.8 miles away); Oregon Beach Gold (approx. 3.4 miles away); Battle Rock City Park (approx. 7.2 miles away); Wreck of the Cottoneva (approx. 7.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Port Orford.
Regarding Building Community Cornerstones.
Patrick Hughes born in County Tyrone, Ireland in 1830. Patrick came west first, looking for gold and Jane followed later. Eventually they arrived near the Sixes River, and established what was to become a large ranch.
Patrick was a progressive and prosperous dairyman. He built his ranch from the original acreage to nearly 2,000 acres, employing as many as 14 ranch hands. He produced high quality butter for barter and sale locally as well as in San Francisco. He also sold and traded other ranch products, such as smoked and cured meats, milk, and fish to local markets.
Patrick built a small church "Mary, Star of the Sea" on his land in 1892. Behind it was a cemetery where several of his Irish employees and family members were buried. Patrick himself was buried there after his accidental death in 1901.
By the way, the streaks of black sand in Cape Blanco beaches indicate the presence of gold. From the mid-1800s through the 1940s, mining operations were conducted on the south beach. The small pond at the south
Also see . . . Cape Blanco Heritage Society. Heritage Society website:
Links to the nearby Hughes Ranch entry (Submitted on February 13, 2021, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.)
Credits. This page was last revised on September 22, 2022. It was originally submitted on January 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 153 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on January 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on January 31, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 6. submitted on June 3, 2021, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.