Oral history interview with Mary V. Tobkin [Sound Recording 02]

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Oral history interview with Mary V. Tobkin [Sound Recording 02]


  • 1981-02-06 (Creation)


Audiocassette; 00:30:51

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Biographical history

Mary Virginia Tobkin, nee Mary Willimina Schimmel, was born in Cook, Minnesota, in 1917. From 1957 to 1972, she served as administrative secretary to Portland Mayor Terry Schrunk. She married three times and had no children; over her professional life she also used the names Mary V. Harrison and Mary V. Curry. She died in 1993.

Sources: Vital records on Ancestry.com; information provided by Tobkin in her interview.

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Tape 1, Side 2. This oral history interview with Mary V. Tobkin was conducted by Linda S. Dodds at Tobkin's home in Portland, Oregon, on February 6, 1981, as part of the Oregon Historical Society Research Library's oral history program. At the time of the interview, Dodds' name was Linda S. Brody.

In this interview, Tobkin discusses how she became involved in Portland politics and talks about her work as administrative secretary for Portland Mayor Terry Schrunk. She speaks about Schrunk's political campaigns, shares her experiences as a woman in a mid-20th century workplace, and discusses Schrunk's accomplishments as mayor, including his work to improve trade relations with Japan and to improve Portland's mass transit systems. She closes the interview by sharing her reasons for retiring from politics when Schrunk left office in 1972.

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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/

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  • English

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