Talent is located in Oregon's beautiful Rogue River Valley, just off Interstate 5. We are located seven miles south of Medford and four miles north of Ashland, in Jackson County. The current population is 5,589 (2000 Census). Our elevation is 1,635' and temperatures vary from 20 to 65 degrees in winter, with occasional fog and snow. Summer temperatures are 65 to 110 degrees, with cool nights.
In the past few years, Talent has been experiencing a period of residential and commercial growth. New subdivisions and apartment complexes are either under construction or have been completed. The Talent Industrial Park has attracted new businesses to give more opportunities for employment.
The Urban Renewal Agency and the Historical Society meet regularly to discuss ideas for further development, refurbishment of the town, and historical preservation.
The story of Talent begins in 1852 with the arrival of the first recorded settler, Jacob Wagner. Jacob completed his homestead in 1853 and named his settlement "Wagner." In 1854, the military came from Yreka and set up a fort on Jacob's property. The fort was named "Fort Wagner," and was intended to protect the travelers and early settlers from the Indians who had lived in the Bear Creek Valley for many years. There was never any trouble from the Indians, so Fort Wagner became a center for social activities and religious services.
There is controversy as to the first name of our town. Some say it was "Wagner Creek Fort." Others say "Wagner Creek." Regardless, in 1889, A.P. Talent platted a townsite and named it "Talent." On November 2, 1910, Talent became an incorporated town.
Talent has two grocery stores, a pharmacy, bank, public library, post office, Laundromat, hardware store, several restaurants, veterinarian, two gas stations, truck stop, medical/dental offices, and a variety of other businesses. We have grade and middle schools, with students commuting to Phoenix to more grade schools and the high school. The City has a Mayor and City Council, Planning Commission, Parks Commission, City Manager, City Planner, and Municipal Judge. City police, building, water, street and park maintenance is provided to the community. As of July 1, 1999, Talent's Fire Department annexed into Jackson County Fire District No. 5. The fire district provides service to the City of Talent and its residents.
For more information visit: www.cityoftalent.org
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