Oral history interview with Erskine Wood

Oral history interview with Erskine Wood [Sound Recording 01] Oral history interview with Erskine Wood [Sound Recording 02]

Identity elements

Reference code

SR 9512

Name and location of repository

Level of description



Oral history interview with Erskine Wood


  • 1965-02-22 (Creation)


0.1 cubic feet; 1 audiotape reel (1 hr., 52 min., 19 sec.)

Name of creator


Biographical history

Erskine B. Wood was born in the Vancouver Barracks in Vancouver, Washington, in 1879. He was the son of Portland, Oregon, lawyer Charles Erskine Scott Wood, whose biography he authored. In 1901, he earned a law degree from Harvard University. In 1903, he and Rebecca Baird Biddle were married; they later had four children. He joined his father's law firm in Portland and specialized in admiralty law. He also served as admiralty counsel to the United States Shipping Board in 1920. Rebecca Baird Biddle died in 1951. In 1953, Wood and Louise Pippel Cunningham were married. He retired from his law practice in 1982, and died in 1983 at the age of 104.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

This oral history interview with Erskine Wood was conducted by Robert E. Jones and Charles S. Crookham on February 22, 1965.

In this interview, Wood discusses the naval career of his father, C. E. S. Wood, as well as his father's friendship with Chief Joseph of the Nimiipuu (Nez Perce) people in the Wallowa Valley, Oregon. He describes spending summers with Chief Joseph in 1892 and 1893. He then talks about C. E. S. Wood's law practice in Portland, Oregon, including some of the cases he worked on and lawyers he worked with. He discusses studying the law, joining his father's law firm, and specializing in admiralty law. He talks about cases he worked on, and about judges he argued before. He also discusses the history of the Skidmore Fountain.

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

Copyright for this interview is held by the estate of Erskine Wood. Use is allowed according to the following statement: In Copyright, http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/

Physical access

Technical access

Conditions governing reproduction

Languages of the material

  • English

Scripts of the material

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Finding aids

Acquisition and appraisal elements

Custodial history

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

The Erskine Wood papers, Mss 2445, and additional oral history interviews with Erskine Wood, SR 441 and SR 1096, are also held at the Oregon Historical Society Research Library.

Related descriptions

Notes element

General note

Preferred citation: Oral history interview with Erskine Wood, by Robert E. Jones and Charles S. Crookham, SR 9512, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.

General note

An incomplete transcript (48 pages) is available for in-person use at the 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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Accession area