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Robertson, Burns, and Failing families papers

  • Coll 784
  • Collection
  • 1786-1988

Many of Portland's early settling families created long-lasting ties with one another through marriage and business relationships. Often leaving areas such as New England and San Francisco, the first generation of transplants found Portland to be a small town of new opportunities for trade and business from 1840-1855. Family relationships, such as those seen between the Robertson, Corbett, and Failing families beginning in the 1850s, often lasted for generations. Starting with the joint venture between Henry Winslow Corbett and brother-in-law Thomas Robertson (1817-1900), multiple other partnerships were later formed, including Robertson Heavy Hardware, Corbett, Failing and Company, Foster and Robertson and Corbett, Failing, and Robertson.

The Robertson family represented a crossroads of Portland familial relationships. Beginning with the arrival of Thomas Robertson and his wife Mary Freeland (Corbett) Robertson, from New York, multiple generations of the Robertson family went on to marry into different branches of other old Portland families, such Couch, Lewis, and Reed. Through these relationships, they also gained ties with several family lineages from the East Coast. Individuals in these families later attended elite schools, traveled widely and participated in family businesses to great success. They also contributed to Portland's civic life, becoming city or state officials, and serving as early supporters for institutions such as the Portland Art Museum and Reed College.

Robertson family

Portland General Electric Centennial Oral History Series

  • SR PGE
  • Collection
  • 1987

A series of interviews conducted by Judy Hartman and Craig Wollner with employees of Portland General Electric for use in creating a history of the company for its centennial in 1988.

Hartman, Judy

Oral history interview with Lawrence Leighton Smith, by Linda Brody

  • SR 9343
  • Collection
  • 1980-05-12

Smith discusses his early musical education, his career as a pianist and conductor, mostly in New England, and his experiences as conductor and music director for the Oregon Symphony in Portland, Oregon.

Smith, Lawrence Leighton

Oral history interview with Red Dunning, by Kathy Walsh

  • SR 9345
  • Collection
  • 1982-03-01

Dunning discusses his career as a musician and music director at KOIN and the shows he had on KOIN-TV. He also discusses his interest in nature photography.

Dunning, Owen C., 1904-1982

Oral history interview with Howard Hobson, by Linda Brody

  • SR 9354
  • Collection
  • 1982-06-28

Hobson discusses his early interest in athletics, playing sports at University of Oregon, and his career as a college football, baseball and basketball coach, particularly at University of Oregon.

Hobson, Howard, 1903-

Oral history interview with Dorothy Thornton, by Nancy Hawver

  • SR 1076
  • Collection
  • 1991-09-10 - 1991-12-13

Thornton discusses her family background, her father's involvement with the Tillamook Creamery Association, her childhood and education, her art and art collecting, her husband, Robert Y. Thornton, a trip to Europe in the 1930s, the Depression, high school sports, Bob's political career, her involvement in the creation of the Tillamook County Library, raising a family, their activities during World War II, and her involvement in various art organizations.

Thornton, Dorothy, 1913-2005

William L. Finley Papers, 1899-1946

  • MSS Finley
  • Collection
  • 1899 - 1946

William L. Finley's papers primarily document his work as a wildlife conservationist, author, lecturer, photographer, and filmmaker from about 1900 to 1940. The collection also documents the work his wife Irene Finley and photography partner Herman Bohlman. The collection consists of published and unpublished manuscripts, lecture and field notes, reports, correspondence, photographs and motion picture films.

An addition to the collection (Accession 2014:062) is made up of correspondence and newspaper clippings documenting the wildlife conservation work of William and Irene Finley. Among the topics addressed in the correspondence include: song bird protection laws in Oregon, requests to Finley for use of his photographs, the forming of an Oregon Fish and Game Commission, biological surveys conducted by Finley, legislation in California repealing meadowlark protection, and letters by Finley to various organizations regarding the presentation of one of his lectures. A highlight among the correspondence is a thank you letter from Finley to President Theodore Roosevelt for his establishment of wild bird reservations. The clippings are newspaper articles written by Irene and William Finley about encounters with wildlife, nocturnal bird sounds, and their filming of wildlife at Paulina Lake. The four articles all appeared in editions of the "Oregon Sunday Journal."

Finley, William L. (William Lovell), 1876-1953

Soap Creek Valley History Project

  • SR Soap Creek Valley History Project
  • Collection
  • 1989

The Soap Creek Valley History Project Oral Histories consist of oral histories conducted primarily in 1989-1991 by the Oregon State University Research Forests to better understand the history, ecology, and culture of the Soap Creek Valley in Benton County, Oregon.

Oral History Interview with Flora Cushinway Thompson

  • SR 9586
  • Collection
  • 1971?

Flora Cushinway Thompson discusses her marriage to Chief Tommy Thompson of the Wyams, fishing, religion, and the fight against the building of the Dalles Dam.

Thompson, Flora Cushinway, 1893-1978

Photo Art Commercial Studio photographs

  • Org. Lot 791 - 1944
  • Collection
  • 1944

The Photo Art Commercial Studio Collection represents the work of one of Portland’s premiere commercial photography firms. The collection consists of hundreds of thousands of negatives, plus prints, slides, and film footage, from 1936 to 1998. This exceptional collection is rich in Northwest scenic views, portraits, photographs of community events and organizations, and business products and operations. Prominent Northwest photographers, such as Ray Atkeson, photographed for the studio.

Photo Art Studios was opened in 1925 by Claude F. Palmer who had operated a small photo studio as a teenager. Photo Art began as a photofinishing operation, expanding in later years to commercial and advertising photography, motion pictures, and photo murals. In 1959, John Patterson, an Oregonian who was studying photography, joined the staff of Photo Art. In 1965, Patterson became a partner in the business with Claude Palmer; Patterson assumed full ownership in 1978 after Palmer’s retirement.

Palmer, Claude F., 1899-1991

Columbia Rediviva collection

  • Mss 957
  • Collection
  • 1785-1852

The collection consists of correspondence, journals, ship logs, administrative records, and ink sketches relating to the ship Columbia Rediviva. A mix of original materials and reproductions are present. Among the originals are: the journal of John Hoskins, written during the Columbia's journey around the world in 1791-1792; the journal of George Barrell, 1806, written on board the brig Venus from Boston to Malaga, and on the schooner Louisiana from Malaga to New York; Barrell's account of stores on board the Columbia, 1792-1793; letters of Joseph Barrell to Samuel Webb, 1785-1801, and to John Hoskins, 1790; letters from Colburn Barrell and Robert Haswell, 1801; owner's accounts, 1787-1793; accounts of the Columbia and Lady Washington, 1787-1790; receipts; and four ink sketches by George Davidson depicting incidents in the voyages of the Columbia.

The reproductions held in this collection include the journals of Robert Haswell and Owen Smith, 1787-1789; and a file of receipts and other papers concerning outfitting of the Columbia, 1790 (on microfilm). Also included are publications of Robert Gray's wife Martha's petition to congress for a pension and memorial, 1848-1852.

Oral history interview with William Francis Lambert

  • SR 81
  • Collection
  • 1980-07-14

In the interview, he discusses his family history, childhood in Portland, YMCA Spirit Lake Boy's Camp (1913 - 1916) working in timber and railroad industries etc.

Lambert, William Francis

Coronation of Womanhood posters

  • Coll 839
  • Collection
  • 1884-1885

The collection consists of two copies of a poster entitled “Coronation of Womanhood” and a single copy of an identification key to the people depicted in the poster. The posters are printed from a photo crayon lithograph engraving. At the front center of the image, the goddess of Liberty is crowning a kneeling female figure representing womanhood. Below them is a banner reading, “Coronation of Womanhood.” Arranged in a half-circle above Liberty and Womanhood at the top of the poster are the portraits of Edward Dickinson Baker, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and James A. Garfield. Flanking either side of the image is a dais draped in bunting featuring the state crests of New York, California, Oregon, Nebraska, Wyoming, and the District of Columbia. Seated at the dais are 17 women of the suffrage movement: Martha C. Wright, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucy Stone, Frances Wright, Lucretia Coffin Mott, Elizabeth Boynton Harbert, Susan B. Anthony, Abigail Scott Duniway, Dr. Clemence S. Lozier, Helen M. Gouger, Sarah L. Knox Goodrich, Mary Ashton Rice Livermore, Mary J. Collins, Julia Ward Howe, Lillie Devereux Black, Matilda Jocelyn Gage, and Ernestine L. Rose. Below the dais, there is an audience of 275 additional men recognized as supporters of women’s enfranchisement. The men depicted in the scene include Matthew Deady, Stephen F. Chadwick, Rockey Preston Earhart, Joseph N. Dolph, Melvin Clark George, Samuel Royal Thurston, and William S. Ladd. A full listing of the depicted individuals is accessible via the identification key. The inscription at the bottom of the poster reads, “Respectfully dedicated to the loyal subjects of liberty who paved the way to woman’s enfranchisement in the Pacific Northwest, United States of America, anno domini one thousand eight hundred eighty three.”

Source: The Idaho Semi-Weekly World. February 20, 1885.

Duniway, Abigail Scott, 1834-1915

Oh What a Night

  • SR 2534
  • Collection
  • 2004-03-18

Audio recording of an Oregon Historical Society event, consisting of a panel discussion moderated by Melody Rose. Gretchen Kafoury, Vera Katz, Norma Paulus, and Betty Roberts discuss the womens' movement in addition to their experiences in the Oregon State legislature in the 1970s and 1980s.

Kafoury, Gretchen Miller

Oral History Interview with Vera Katz, by Linda Brody

  • SR 9044
  • Collection
  • 1992-04-28 - 1992-05-19

Vera Katz discusses her early life and education, and later political career through 1982. Her family immigrated to the United States during world War II and she grew up in New York, where she became involved in Modern Dance, studying under Martha Graham. After moving to Portland to support her husband's art career, she became involved in local politics, ultimately becoming a State Representative in 1972, where she was a part of the 1973 Women's Caucus, which passed many landmark pieces of legislation. She also discusses her plans for the future.

Katz, Vera, 1933-2017

Oral history interview with Don Clark

  • SR 1166
  • Collection
  • 1994 August 30 - 1998 March 27

Clark discusses family heritage, education, and career beginnings in the criminal justice system; experiences as Multnomah County sheriff; campaign for the Multnomah County Commission; modernization of county government in Oregon; Mt. Hood freeway and regional transportation planning, Burnside Consortium, Columbia Villa, single-payer health care, and numerous other subjects of policy and politics of city and county in the 1960s, 1970s, and early 1980s.

Clark, Donald Edward, 1933-

Oregon elections collection, 1846-1888

  • MSS 1231
  • Collection
  • 1846 - 1888

Collection assembled by the Oregon Historical Society regarding elections in Oregon. Included are Poll Books for Sauvie Island (1859), Astoria Precinct (1857), Elkton Precinct (1856), Santiam Precinct (1860), and Butte Creek (1872); contributors to the 1873 election fund; certified documents of electors, president and vice-president, U.S. (1876, 1880, 1888); and newspaper clippings and list of contributors to the 1888 election. Additional materials include oversize ballots and tally sheets (in 2 flat boxes), and 1860-1862 election materials (1 reel of microfilm).

Oregon. Constitutional Convention (1857)

Cartes-de-Visite photographs

  • Org. Lot 500
  • Collection
  • 1855 - 1905

Cartes- de- visite are a form of card photograph popular from around 1860 to the early 1900s, typically used for portraiture. The common construction of these cards consists of a thin albumen print mounted on a thicker card backing measuring 2.5 x 4 inches. André Adolphe-Eugène Disdéri patented the process of creating these photo cards in Paris in 1854, streamlining the process of commercial portraiture. Cartes- de- visite were traded among friends and visitors and they were popularly displayed in albums. In the United States, cartes- de- visite were a staple of commercial photographers during the Civil War as a means of selling inexpensive portraits of soldiers and their loved ones. Photographs of celebrities, military, and political figures were also popular for collecting and trading. Cartes- de- visite were superseded by Cabinet cards, a similar, larger format of roughly 4.5 x 6.5 inches, in the 1870s, but they remained popular into the 20th century.

This artificial collection was accumulated from accessions containing cartes- de- visite photographs acquired prior to 2010 by the Oregon Historical Society Research Library. The cartes- de- visite were originally part of a topical photograph collection and were separated into their own collection to address preservation concerns. The numbering scheme for the collection reflects their original placement within the topical photograph collection. As a result, numbering in this collection is not sequential. The collection includes portraits taken from about 1855 through the early 1900s. Many of the portraits have attached biographical information. Portraits by many well-known Oregon photography studios are represented in this collection, including Joseph Buchtel, Andrew B. Paxton, Isaac G. Davidson, Peter Britt, and F. A. Smith. The collection also contains images of locomotives, ships, buildings, and landscapes in the Pacific Northwest.

Also included is the Photographer Study Collection, which contains sample work from several studios in Oregon, California, and Washington. The portraits in this series are unidentified with the exception of a small selection of portraits that were identified after the collection was assembled.

In addition to Oregon-related materials, the collection includes cartes- de- visite of notable military, political, and celebrity figures from the late 19th century. The most common subjects are American Civil War portraits, a series of illustrations of George and Martha Washington, European notables cards, and advertisements.

Oral history interview with Maribel Cadmus

  • SR 1100
  • Collection
  • 1992-04-09 - 1992-05-07

This oral history interview with Maribel Cadmus was conducted by Vinita Howard from April 9 to May 7, 1992, at Cadmus' home in Salem, Oregon. In the interview, Cadmus discusses her family background and early life in The Dalles and Pendleton, Oregon; attending Oregon State University during World War II and meeting her husband, George Cadmus; and George Cadmus' studies in animal husbandry. She also discusses raising a family on a farm in Turner, Oregon; and beginning to work at the Oregon Legislature. Cadmus talks about Oregon politics and her experiences as secretary of the state Senate, including: the transition to working with computers; the daily duties of the secretary of the Senate; the various committees she clerked for, including the Highway Commission; lobbyists and senators she worked with, including Tony Yturri, Norman Howard, Jason Boe, Debbs Potts, Harry Boivin, and John Kitzhaber. She also discusses working with Cecil L. Edwards, senatorial procedure, and her involvement with the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Cadmus, Maribel, 1924-

Women collection, circa 1899-1950

  • Mss 1534
  • Collection
  • 1899-1950

Collection of materials assembled by the Oregon Historical Society relating to women in Oregon, ca. 1899-1950. Included in the collection are postcards with anti and pro-suffrage images, the correspondence and diary of Mrs. Sylvia Thompson, the correspondence of M.H. Wicoxon, scrapbook of the League of Women Voters, papers of various women's political groups (including anti-suffrage groups) and newspaper clippings regarding women's rights, legal status and prominent women.

Oregon Constitutional Convention records, 1857-1859

  • MSS 1227
  • Collection
  • 1857 - 1859

Documents created during the Oregon Constitutional Convention of 1857. Includes: committee reports, drafts of articles and schedules, general notes, corrections, and other materials. Sections of the constitution represented include: preamble and bill of rights; suffrage and elections; distribution of powers; Legislative Department; Executive Department; education and school lands; finance; militia; corporations and internal improvements; seat of government; general provisions; boundaries; schedules, and related papers. Also includes printed speech of James Hughes of Indiana, on the admission of Oregon, delivered in the House of Representatives, 1859 February 10.

Oregon. Constitutional Convention (1857)

Japanese American Oral History Project

  • Japanese American Oral History Project
  • Collection
  • 1992-1998

A series of oral history interviews conducted between 1992 and 1998 with Japanese Americans in Oregon. Loen Dozono of the Japanese American Citizen's League (JACL) collaborated with OHS on this project. The interviews were conducted by JACL and OHS staff and volunteers. They aimed to interview Issei (first generation Japanese Americans), and ultimately also interviewed several Nisei (second generation Japanese Americans).

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