Name and location of repository
Level of description
Oral history interview with Denny Jones
- 1992-07-27 - 1997-07-30 (Creation)
.1 cubic feet 17 audiocassettes (16 hr., 45 min., 16 sec.)
Name of creator
Denzil "Denny" Eugene Jones was born in Ione, Oregon, in 1910. When Jones was 5 years old, his mother died. The family then moved briefly to Montana, but returned to Eastern Oregon, where he attended school. While Jones was a teenager, his father pulled him out of high school to train him as a racing jockey, and he raced horses around the country and in Mexico for a year. He never returned to school, but returned to Eastern Oregon around 1927 and became a cattle rancher. He and Mildred Altnow were married in 1931; they had two children. After running cattle operations for several decades, Jones gained political experience while lobbying for the Oregon Cattlemen's Association. Jones, a Republican, represented Lake and Malheur counties in the Oregon House of Representatives from 1973 to 1982, then Harney, Lake and Malheur counties from 1983 to 1994. Mildred Jones died in 1999, and Denny Jones died in 2012 at the age of 101.
Name of creator
Content and structure elements
Scope and content
This oral history interview with Denny Jones was conducted by Clark Hansen at Jones' home in Ontario, Oregon, from July 27-30, 1992. Jones' wife, Mildred Jones, was also present. In the interview, Jones discusses his family background and early life in Eastern Oregon and Montana, including training and racing horses, daily life on a cattle ranch, and life during Prohibition and the Depression. Denny Jones and Mildred Jones then discuss their courtship and wedding, as well as her family background. He then talks about buying a cattle ranch and issues ranchers face, including water rights, livestock loss, and using federal land for grazing. Jones discusses getting involved in politics, including lobbying for the Oregon Cattlemen's Association.
Jones discusses serving in the Oregon House of Representatives from 1973 to the time of the interview in 1992, including his campaigns, his constituency, and legislation he worked on, particularly on agriculture and land use. He also discusses working with various governors' administrations, including those of Tom McCall, Bob Straub, Vic Atiyeh, and Neil Goldschmidt. He also discusses his relationship with the press, his conservative politics, and the procedures of the House. He talks about some of his fellow legislators, particularly John Kitzhaber and Vera Katz. He closes the interview by talking about his current family life and ranching activities.
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use elements
Conditions governing access
Copyright held by the Oregon Historical Society. Licensed under Creative Commons, BY-NC-SA: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/
Conditions governing reproduction
Languages of the material
Scripts of the material
Language and script notes
Acquisition and appraisal elements
Immediate source of acquisition
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information
Related materials elements
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
Related archival materials
Preferred citation: Oral history interview with Denny Jones, by Clark Hansen, SR 1117, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.
Forms part of the Oregon Legislature Oral History Series.
Handwritten index (32 pages) is available for in-person use at the Oregon Historical Society Research Library.
Description control element
Rules or conventions
Finding aid based on DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard), 2nd Edition.