Sunday, March 16, 2008

My Oregon, the Valentine state, celebrates it's one hundred fiftieth birthday on February 14, next year. A place of great diversity, in the land itself, in the people who were here and those who have come after, there is richness in it's history and in it's growth.

The Oregon 150 organization, led by our Governor and Senate, is planning a year of cultural celebration that should call out to the writer in all of us. There are stories to be told. For more information, go to

Monday, March 03, 2008

As a child, I visited the beautiful brick school my grandfather was helping build as a WPA carpenter. As an adult I've visited incredible lodges in our national parks, built by WPA workers. I've also read political cartoons making fun of the program and studied the concept in history classes. It wasn't until another writer turned me on to a different part of the program that I discovered many authors were also employed by the WPA. One of their projects was to interview and record the lifestyles, culture and history of people from all over the country from 1936 to 1940 Those records are in the Smithsonian but are available on line, arranged by state. The address is www/
I've been reading the stories told by the people of Oregon in their own words and discovered they are fascinating and rich with history not taught in the classroom.