James C. Ayers discusses his career as a smokejumper, which started in the 1940s and lasted until 1972. He describes his training at the Nine Mile Ranger Station in Montana, as well as what it was like to fight a fire, from jumping in to after-fire procedures. Ayers talks about his fellow smokejumpers, many of whom were former servicemen, and their off-duty activities, such as going to dances in Missoula. Ayers discusses the impact smokejumping had on the rest of his life, including a focus on physical fitness and how the beauty of the scenery inspired him to pursue art.
Smokejumpers Montana Biography; Smokejumping Montana History; Nine Mile Ranger Station; Missoula, Montana; University of Montana; Stewart Peak; Bob Marshall Wilderness
Smokejumpers 1984 Reunion Oral History Collection, OH 133, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana-Missoula. Mansfield Library
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Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (72 min.) : analog + 1 transcript (19 p. : 28 cm.)
Ayers, James C., "James C. Ayers Interview, June 18, 1984" (1984). Smokejumpers 1984 Reunion Oral History Project. OH 133-002.