Collection SR 1 - Oral history interview with Wendell H. Harmon and Florence E. Harmon

Oral history interview with Wendell H. Harmon and Florence E. Harmon [Sound Recording 01]

Identity elements

Reference code

SR 1

Name and location of repository

Level of description

Collection

Title

Oral history interview with Wendell H. Harmon and Florence E. Harmon

Date(s)

  • 1983-03-16 (Creation)

Extent

.1 cubic feet; 1 audiocassette (29 min., 16 sec.)

Name of creator

Biographical history

Wendell Harold Harmon was born in Waverly, Iowa, in 1910. In 1932, he earned a bachelor's degree in forestry from Iowa State College, now known as Iowa State University. He graduated during the Depression with no job prospects. In 1933, he and Florence Elizabeth Thuirer were married. That same year, the couple moved to a homestead near Elk City, Oregon, and began operating a tree farm on the land. In 1935, Harmon accepted a job with the U.S. Forest Service. Though he worked largely in South Dakota, the Harmons kept the homestead in Oregon, dividing their time between the two places. After Wendell H. Harmon's death in 1999, an endowed research fellowship in forestry management was created in the Harmons' name at Iowa State University.

Name of creator

(1909-2010)

Biographical history

Florence Elizabeth Harmon, nee Thuirer, was born in Summit, Iowa, in 1909. In 1931, she earned a bachelor's degree in home economics from Iowa State College, now Iowa State University. After graduating, she became a teacher. In 1933, she and Wendell Harold Harmon were married. That same year, the couple moved to a homestead near Elk City, Oregon, and began operating a tree farm on the land. After Wendell H. Harmon's death in 1999, an endowed research fellowship in forestry management was created in the Harmons' name at Iowa State University. Florence E. Harmon died in 2010.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

This oral history interview with Wendell H. Harmon and Florence E. Harmon was conducted by Elizabeth Buehler at the Harmon home in Beavercreek, Oregon, on March 16, 1983. In this interview, the Harmons discuss their experience of graduating from Iowa State College, now Iowa State University, in the midst of the Depression with no job prospects in Iowa. Wendell H. Harmon describes choosing to leave Iowa for a homestead near Elk City, Oregon, in 1933. He talks about farming the land on the homestead, and Florence E. Harmon talks about their neighbors. She also talks about her experience being fired from her teaching job as a result of her marriage to Wendell H. Harmon. They discuss their experience setting up their homestead, including building and furnishing a house, preparing the land, and raising livestock. They talk about maintaining the homestead after Wendell H. Harmon accepted a forestry job in 1935 that involved work primarily outside Oregon, and about the process of acquiring the deed to the land. They close the interview by discussing tree farming, as well as the sale of their homestead.

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

Copyright for this interview is held by the Oregon Historical Society. Use is allowed according to the following statement: Creative Commons - BY-NC-SA, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/.

Physical access

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Conditions governing reproduction

Languages of the material

  • English

Scripts of the material

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Finding aids

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Publication notes

Reminiscence: Florence Harmon on Depression-Era Homesteading in Lincoln County, Oregon Historical Quarterly, Vol. 89, No. 1 (Spring, 1988), pp. 46-69.

Notes element

General note

Preferred citation: Oral history interview with Wendell H. Harmon and Florence E. Harmon, by Elizabeth Buehler, SR 1, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.

Specialized notes

Alternative identifier(s)

Description control element

Rules or conventions

Finding aid based on DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard), 2nd Edition.

Sources used

Archivist's note

Sarah Stroman

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