Watch the 2022 History Makers awards ceremony, recognizing the accomplishments of Margaret Carter, Sid DeBoer, William B. Long, M.D., and the Oregon Symphony.
In December 1913, a tiny town called Copperfield in eastern Baker County found itself on a collision course with Oregon Gov. Oswald West. Located on the border of Oregon and Idaho, Copperfield had earned a notorious reputation as rough, wild and wide open. Receiving no cooperation from the Baker County Sheriff, the governor announced that he was sending Fern Hobbs, his petite 30-year-old secretary, to demand the resignations of corrupt city officials, close the saloons and declare martial law if necessary.
In the early 1950s, Oregon singer Johnnie Ray’s was one of the biggest pop stars in the world. His unique sound, along with his emotional performances, thrilled audiences and helped usher in rock and roll.
The world recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. Before the astronauts ever made it to the lunar surface, they trained in Oregon’s own Moon Country. In the early 1960s, NASA worked to put a man on the moon, but they didn’t know what to expect once they got there. In many ways, the moon remained a mystery. What caused the pocked terrain? Scientists debated whether the irregular surface was the result of volcanic activity or celestial impacts. They decided to prepare astronauts for either condition – and recognize the difference. Astronauts took part in classroom and fieldwork studies on geology. NASA announced the men were being instructed in the equivalent of a master’s degree in the subject.
In 1920, Oregon’s Opal Whiteley was the center of international controversy. Her childhood diary was called a work of genius, until readers discovered hidden clues to a mystery that has not been solved to this day.
In 1959 Washington ranchers Don and June Mulford decided to try what everybody said couldn’t be done — ride the entire length of the 2,400 mile Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada in one year. It would prove to be the adventure of a lifetime.
At age 85, Portland's Darcelle XV is the nation's oldest performing drag queen and operates what is thought to be the country's longest running drag revue. Throughout her long career she has been a part of revolutionary change within the LGBT community. Today, Walter Cole, as Darcelle XV, remains Portland's iconic Drag Queen.
Few other cities in the world have water as pure and as well protected as Portland. For nearly 115 years, an ingenious, gravity-fed system has delivered mountain rainwater from an isolated river called the Bull Run. Yet the rich history of Portland’s water supply has unfolded largely unbeknownst to the people it serves.
Oregon Historical Society
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Portland, Oregon 97205