Tape 1, Side 2. This oral history interview with Wendell Wyatt was conducted by Randall Weisberg at Wyatt’s office in Portland, Oregon, from January 28 to March 24, 1992. In this interview, Wyatt discusses his family background and early life in Eugene and Portland, including his childhood hobbies, his memories of the Depression, and his interest in journalism. He then discusses studying journalism at the University of Oregon, including writing for the student newspaper, the Oregon Daily Emerald. He then discusses attending University of Oregon Law School, including some of his professors, particularly Orlando Hollis; his social life; and the various jobs he held throughout. He talks about his early interest in politics and getting a job with the FBI, including his training and the kinds of investigations he participated in. He then discusses his service as a bombardier in the U.S. Marine Corps in the Pacific Theater during World War II. He talks about practicing law in Astoria after his discharge, including getting involved in Republican politics. He talks about some of the cases he worked on, including some regarding commercial fishing. He speaks at length about his involvement in the 1952 presidential election and his relationship with U.S. Senator Wayne Morse. Wyatt discusses his time in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1964 to 1975. He talks about his appointment to take over A. Walter Norblad’s seat, as well as his later re-election campaigns. He discusses the Lyndon Johnson administration, including the legislation of the Great Society Era and the Vietnam War. He then discusses the Richard Nixon administration, including Nixon’s resignation and some of the accomplishments of administration. He then describes legislation that he wishes were possible, including gun control. He reflects on what he accomplished on behalf of Oregon during his time in the House and his reasons for not running for re-election in 1975. He goes on to discuss returning to Oregon to practice law. He also talks about his involvement with the U.S. District Court of Oregon, and he briefly discusses many of the judges appointed to the various courts in Oregon. He closes the interview by discussing his opinions on recent environmental debates.
Wyatt, Wendell William, 1917-2009