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Fall 2022, 123:3

In this issue, authors explore mental health care in Oregon from the 1950s to 2000, early bicycling and road development in Astoria, Justice Betty Roberts’s work for equality in Oregon, and the discovery of timbers of Oregon’s Beeswax Wreck.

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In this Issue

From Asylum to Community: Mental Health Care in Oregon from the 1950s to 2000

by David Cutler, Zeb Larson, Jason Renaud, and Barry Kast

The question of how to provide mental health services for people with severe mental illnesses predates the founding of the United States. In this research article, authors explore the history of mental health care in Oregon between the 1950s and 2000, specifically the move from providing long-stay hospital care to community care. During this time of evolving health care systems, both nationally and in Oregon, the “lessons learned from the early years of deinstitutionalization foresaw better care.” The authors argue that during the twenty-first century, with its unique challenges, “creating new solutions will certainly require awareness of the historical context and adaptations that built our current system of care.”

Astoria: The Starting Point in Long-Distance Cycling

by Melvin L. Bashore

In 1976, over 4,000 cyclists took part in Bikecentennial ’76, a transcontinental bicycle ride organized to occur during America’s bicentennial celebration of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Organizers selected the coast-to-coast route to follow U.S. Highway 30 between Astoria, Oregon, and Yorktown, Virginia. After the 1976 event ended, the Bikecentennial organization continued operation, developing more routes and maps for bicycle touring. Astoria continued to be an important starting point for transcontinental rides and a popular beginning for cyclists traveling the coast of Oregon and California. This article explores the early years of bicycling in Astoria. It overviews the development of paths, roads, and trans-coastal and coastal highways from Astoria, leading to its recognition as one of the country’s favored starting places for long-distance cycling.

Justice Betty Roberts’s Work for Equality in Oregon: Mark O. Hatfield Lecture Series Post-Lecture Discussion

with Ann Aiken, Michael “Mick” Gillette, Adrienne Nelson, Dian Odell, Ellen Rosenblum, and Amanda L. Tyler, moderated by Kerry Tymchuk

On April 13, 2021, Amanda L. Tyler spoke about her book, Justice, Justice Thou Shalt Pursue: A Life’s Work Fighting for a More Perfect Union in a virtual presentation as part of the Oregon Historical Society’s (OHS) annual Mark O. Hatfield Lecture Series. In this virtual roundtable discussion held on Thursday, April 15, 2021, following the lecture, the Oregon Historical Society organized the panel to share stories about Betty Roberts’s influence in the courts, as a state senator, and as a mentor to women. Tyler also joined the conversation to reflect on how Roberts’s work in Oregon mirrored the work of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s work nationally.

Discovery of Timbers of Oregon’s Manila Galleon and New Light on the Early Beeswax Controversy

by Cameron La Follette

This Research Note reports on two items, one archaeological and one historical, on Oregon’s Manila galleon. The first item summarizes the find of timbers on the north Oregon coast, which initial testing indicates date from the time of the Santo Cristo de Burgos, the Manila galleon thought to have wrecked in the area in 1693-94. The second item traces the controversy that raged in the early 20th century over the masses of wax found in the Nehalem Spit area. There was heated disagreement between those who thought it was beeswax, and therefore from a shipwreck, and those who thought it was ozokerite, a mineral wax indicative of possible presence of oil. This brief drama played out in lurid newspaper ads and an oil drilling outfit operating on Nehalem Spit.

On the Covers

This high-wheel bicycle, held in the Oregon Historical Society’s museum collection, dates from about the 1880s and once belonged to Leslie M. Scott. High-wheelers were first manufactured in the United States in 1877 and were present in Astoria, Oregon, by 1879. Since the late nineteenth century, Astoria has been an important starting and ending point for long-distance cycling, and that history is closely linked to the development of paths, roads, and highways in Clatsop County and beyond.

 

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