Back in the early ‘60s, Russ Jackman, a retired OSU extension agent, and Reuben Long, a colorful Fort Rock Valley rancher, collaborated to create a book. The result, “The Oregon Desert,” was unique. It successfully blended natural science with cowboy humor and scholarly prose with casual meanderings. It was a celebration of rural Western storytelling, and over the years, it has become a Pacific Northwest classic.
Indigenous peoples have lived in the Columbia River Plateau region for thousands of years, negotiating and fostering relationships among themselves and with the ecosystems of their homelands. Beginning in the nineteenth century, they formed relationships with foreigners who arrived overland — first, the Lewis and Clark Expedition and, later, thousands of immigrants on the Oregon Trail. Scholars Bobbie Conner and Bill Lang will discuss with each other and with the audience the experience of newcomers entering and crossing those homelands, including how those events impacted life for Native people and how those foreigners’ experiences in the plateau contrasted with the goals they had set when leaving their homes.
In 1943, as World War II raged in Europe and the Pacific, thousands of men and women from across the United States began arriving in a remote part of south-central Washington state. They knew very little about why the U.S. government had hired them — only that it was an important project to support the war effort. It was a project that would change the world forever.
From direct action to court action, women in Oregon used a variety of tactics to protest the state, and the status quo, in the early twentieth century. Women from diverse backgrounds protested as individuals and as members of political and labor organizations, seeking both personal freedom and justice for collective groups. They faced incarceration, harassment, and even physical violence as they worked to demand change. As historian Kimberly Jensen will demonstrate, their stories are important pieces of larger histories of citizenship, civil liberties, and dissent.
Oregon's Jewish pioneers were among the region's first settlers. Arriving with the gold miners, they came for a better life away from persecution. In the process, they helped build the businesses and civic organizations that shaped the state.
The film explores the history of Oregon’s Japanese-Americans, from their early pioneer beginnings to their forced incarceration during World War II, and beyond.
Tom McCall, Oregon’s chief executive from 1967 to 1975, may go down in history as the state’s most productive governor. He was certainly the most interesting. Nearly forty years after he left office and thirty years after his death, Oregon Governor Tom McCall remains one of the state’s most renowned political figures. He envisioned a quality of environment and life unique to Oregon, and he worked relentlessly to protect those values.
In 1967 Governor Tom McCall signed the Beach Bill with great fanfare — granting the public recreational access to Oregon’s beaches. But the bill almost died in committee. A behind the scenes look at the history, politics and people behind HB 1601.
In 1946 the field of electronics was exploding. Radiomen Howard Vollum and Jack Murdock were home from the War and decided to start their own business. The company was Tektronix. The product? An indispensable piece of test equipment that engineers couldn’t work without. In The Spirit of Tek you’ll meet some of the people who built a unique company that changed the world.
Bill Bowerman (1911-1999) is considered one of the greatest track and field coaches the world has ever known. In his 24 years at the University of Oregon, he won four NCAA team championships and coached 33 Olympians, 16 sub-four-minute milers and 64 All-Americans.