23 Nisan 2013 Salı

Oregon: A Historical Timeline

Oregon: A Historical Timeline


The first Native Americans arrive in the Pacific Northwest by way of Siberia and Alaska. The earliest groups survive by fishing and hunting large game.
8000 BCE
Native American settlements are found across the geographical region now known as Oregon, with a majority concentrated along the lower Columbia River, in the western valleys, and around coastal estuaries. Many Oregon names are derived from these Native American tribal names, including Multnomah, Willamette, and Clackamas.
Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa is the first European to reach the Pacific Ocean.
Native American tribes speaking a total of more than 30 languages populate Oregon, including the Klammath, the Nez Perce, and the Chinook.
French explorer Pierre Gaultier de la Vérendyre leads the first known Euro-American expedition into Oregon.
Major Robert Rogers employs the first use of the name Oregon (as "Ouragon"), in a proposal to explore the country west of the Mississippi. While the origin of the name is unknown, one theory suggests it comes from the French word for hurricane, ouragan. The French later refer to the Columbia River as "Hurricane River."
Juan Pérez explores the coast of the Pacific Northwest north to British Columbia. He is the first European to see Yaquina Head, a spit of land jutting into the Pacific Ocean north of present-day Newport on the Oregon Coast.
Another Spanish expedition, lead by Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra and Bruno de Heceta, explores the Oregon coast. While returning south, Heceta finds the mouth of what is now known as Columbia River but is unable to enter.
Captain James Cook first sights the Oregon coast in search of the Northwest Passage and names Perpetua Cape in honor of St. Perpetua’s Day. He begins trading furs on the coast.
American sea captain Robert Gray discovers the largest river in the Pacific Northwest and names it after his ship, theColumbia.
George Vancouver, a British captain, encounters Captain Robert Gray off the coast of Oregon while also exploring the Pacific coasts.
(November 18) Sent by President Thomas Jefferson in an expedition to explore the Louisiana Purchase, Merriwether Lewis and William Clark reach the Pacific Ocean. The Lewis and Clark expedition builds their winter fort at Fort Clatsop on the south side of the Columbia River. The pair begins their journey home on March 23, 1806. The Lewis and Clark Expedition spurs the fur trade business in Oregon.
John Jacob Astor organizes the Pacific Fur Company in Astoria. Fort Astoria is the first permanent non-native settlement in the region. In 1813, the company sells Astoria and all its assets to the British-owned North West Company. Astoria becomes Fort George under Britain and returns to the U.S. in 1818 under the Treaty of Ghent.
David Thompson of the North West Company becomes the first European to navigate the entire length of the Columbia River. He claims the junction with the Snake River for Great Britain and publicizes the abundance of fur-bearing animals when he returns to Montreal.
The Adams-Onis treaty between the United States and Spain establishes the current southern border between Oregon and California at the 42nd parallel.
The Hudson’s Bay Company acquires a fur monopoly for all of British North America after merging with the North West Company.
The Russo-American Treaty removes all remaining Russian claims south of the 54’ 40".
European-diseases strike Oregon Native Americans, killing thousands along the Columbia and Willamette Rivers.
The Methodist Mission is founded in Oregon by the Reverend Jason Lee to educate the Native Americans in the Willamette Valley.
Thirteen pioneers from Oregon’s Willamette Cattle Company travel to Mexican-controlled California to purchase cattle. The demand for cattle soon exceeds the supply, and more pioneers sail south to California to trade for more livestock.
Thomas Fitzpatrick and Joe Meek lead a small group of settlers out of Independence, Missouri, west to the Oregon Territory, a distance of 2,000 miles. They use a route comprised of Native American and trapper paths, which becomes known as the Oregon Trail.
Approximately 400,000 settlers cross into the American West on the Oregon Trail.
The first wagon train with over 1,000 people departs Independence, Missouri for Oregon.
Slavery is declared illegal in Oregon.
The first Pacific Coast newspaper, the Oregon Spectator, is published.
(June 15) The U.S. and Britain sign the Oregon Treaty settling a boundary dispute between Canada and American Pacific Northwest. Britain and the U.S. agree on a joint occupation of what is now known as Oregon Country, agreeing to a compromise border along the 49th parallel.
(November 29) The Whitman massacre. The murder of Dr. Marcus Whitman and his wife, along with thirteen others, by the Cayuse and Umatilla Native Americans at the Whitman Mission begins the Cayuse War. The war rages from 1847 to 1855 while the U.S. Army battles Native Americans east of the Cascades. It is one of several wars between settlers and Native Americans in Oregon that leads to the forced placement of Native Americans on reservations.
(August 14) An act of Congress establishes the Oregon Territory. It includes all of the present-day states of Idaho, Oregon, and Washington and parts of present-day Montana and Wyoming.
In the fall, one-third of the 10,000 settlers in Oregon leave for California in the hopes of finding gold. 
The Oregon Donation Land Act grants free land to "whites and half-breed Indians" in the Oregon Territory. African-Americans, Asians, and full-blooded Native Americans are excluded.
Steamship mail service from San Francisco to the Columbia River is established.
Gold is discovered in the Rogue River in Oregon, thus extending the Gold Rush into the Pacific Northwest.
(February 8) The flip of a coin determines whether a new city in Oregon is named after Boston, Massachusetts, or Portland, Maine. The city of Portland, Oregon is incorporated.
The northern border of the current state of Oregon is defined when roughly half of the Oregon Territory becomes the Washington Territory.
The Nez Perce elders agree to sell most of their land to the U.S. government. They retain 10,000 square miles as a reservation in the area where Washington, Oregon, and Idaho meet. When gold is discovered in this area, the U.S. government calls for a new deal, and in 1863 the U.S. government pays the Native Americans $265,000 for 6 million acres in the area of Lewiston, Oregon.
(February 14) Oregon becomes the 33rd state admitted to the Union.
Oregon adopts a law requiring all African-Americans, Chinese, Hawaiians, and people of mixed race residing in Oregon to pay an annual tax of $5.
Oregon bans interracial marriages, making it against the law for a white person to marry anyone with one-quarter or more African ancestry.
The first Oregon Cavalry is activated and serves until June 1865. The unit is used to guard trade routes, escort immigrant wagon trains, and protect settlers from Native American raids.
Oregon bans whites from marrying anyone who is one-quarter or more Chinese or Hawaiian and one-half or more Native American.
Oregon citizens fail to ratify the Fourteenth Amendment, which grants citizenship to African-Americans.
The Modoc Indian War. An armed conflict between the Native American Modoc tribe and the U.S. Army in southern Oregon and northern California, the war costs the U.S. over half a million dollars. A total of 83 whites and 17 Modoc are killed.
A lock and canal are completed at Willamette Falls to allow vessels to pass and continue upriver on the Willamette River. Construction on a lock is begun on the Columbia River in 1878 and is completed in 1896. Boats are used extensively to haul cargo in the region.
Elijah Davidson discovers a marble cavern in the Siskiyou Mountains. It becomes the Oregon Caves National Monument in 1909.
Seth Lewelling of Milwaukie, Oregon cultivates a new cherry from the seed of a Republican cherry. He names it the "Bing cherry" after a Chinese worker on his farm.
The Nez Perce Indian War begins when white ranchers in the Wallowa Valley attempt to take Native American lands for their cattle range. The war ends when federal troops capture Nez Perce Chief Joseph and exile the natives to a reservation in Kansas.
The largest sea cave in the world is discovered near present-day Florence. It is 120 feet tall and stretches the length of a football field. Today, it is home to the only year-round colony of Steller Sea Lions in North America.
The proliferation of railroads allows the state to market and grow its lumber and wheat industries.
Oregon approves a system of direct legislation by its citizens through initiatives and referendums, which becomes known as the Oregon System. It is later adopted by states like California.
Theodore Roosevelt establishes the million-acre Siskiyou Forest Reserve.
Oregon allows its citizens to recall public officials by ballot initiative.
Portland holds its first Rose Festival and becomes known as the "Rose City." In 1917, the International Rose Test Garden is created by a group of Portland nursery workers and volunteers.
Oregon’s grassroots suffrage campaign wins women the right to vote.
(January 13) Oregon is the 25th state to ratify the 19th Amendment, granting women the right to vote across the nation.
The Oregon State Constitution is amended to remove its exclusion law denying African-Americans the right to vote.
Loggers cause a forest fire in the Coast Range of Oregon, later known as the first fire of the Tillamook Burn. The blaze destroys 240,000 acres.
(September 9) World War II. A Japanese seaplane launched from a submarine drops incendiary bombs on Oregon in an unsuccessful attempt to set fire to the forests of the Northwest.
A Japanese balloon bomb explodes on Gearhart Mountain in Bly, killing the pregnant wife of a minister and her five children, who attempt to drag it out of the woods. They are the first and only known American civilians to be killed in the continental U.S. during World War II.
The Supreme Court grants Oregon Native Americans land-payment rights.
Oregon’s prohibition on interracial marriages is repealed.
Oregon voters ratify the 15th Amendment, which guarantees the right to vote regardless of race.
High-tech industries and services become a major employer in Oregon, which boasts companies like Tektronix and Intel.
Oregon becomes the first state to ban the use of non-returnable bottles and cans.
Mount St. Helens erupts in Washington State, temporarily reducing the depth of the Columbia River to as few as 13 feet. The eruption also deposits ash as far into Oregon as Bend.
Janet Adkins of Portland is the first person to use a suicide machine developed by Dr. Jack Kavorkian. The act sparks a national debate over the euthanasia and the "right to die." Kevorkian later serves eight years in prison for second-degree murder convictions stemming from physician-assisted suicides.
A "Death with Dignity Act" is passed, allowing doctors to prescribe lethal drugs for terminally ill patients with fewer than six months to live. The law is overturned in 1997.
Oregon pioneers the use of postal voting, culminating in a 1998 ballot measure that mandates all counties conduct elections by mail. It is the only state where voting by mail is the only method of voting.
The Oregon Family Fairness Act provides rights to same-sex couples, including the ability to file jointly on insurance forms, hospital visitation rights, and rights relating to partner of the deceased.


Click to enlarge an image

1513: Vasco Núñez de Balboa Spanish explorer, governor, and conquistador

1700: Nez Perce Bandera, present day

1765: There is no known authentic portrait of Robert Rogers, this is an artist's interpretation

1774: Lieutenant Esteban de la Sierra, he was second in command of the Spanish frigate Santiago, piloted by Juan José

1792: Sketch of the Columbia on the river bearing her name

1805: Sculpture of Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and Sacajawea with her baby

1811: Artist's rendering of David Thompson. No historic image of Thompson exists

1818: Plaque on the building where the Treaty of Ghent was negotiated

1834: The Methodist Mission was founded in Oregon Country by the Reverend Jason Lee

1846: Early edition of theOregon Spectator

1847: Marcus Whitman

1850: Oregon land was free for the taking for those with European ancestry

1872: A Modoc woman, Winema, stands between an Indian agent and her husband Frank, posing with other Modoc women.

1873: Dalles City and another sternwheeler (possibly Harvest Queen) in Cascade Locks

1874: Oregon Caves flowstone

1875: Bing cherries

1877: Nez Perce Chief Joseph

1905: Siskiyou National Forest

1927: The leather cover of the original Oregon Constitution

1933: Present-day photo showing recovered forest

1933: Oregon Coast Range, presend day photoshowing a recovered forrest with a mix of deciduous and coniferous trees

1980: Steam plume on Mount St. Helens in 1982, two years after the major eruption

1998: Postal ballot

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