In 2017, National Day Calendar® began celebrating each state in the order they entered the union starting the week of Independence Day and ending with Hawaii. We highlight a small part of each states’ history, foods and the people who make up the state. Many states have their own state celebrations, and National Day Calendar’s observances in no way replace them. There’s so much more to explore, we can’t help but celebrate our beautiful country even more!
NATIONAL OREGON DAY
On March 8, National Oregon Day recognizes the 33rd state to join the union.
Also known as The Beaver State, Oregon’s climate enjoys the warm Pacific air west of the Cascade Mountains and in the lush Willamette Valley. More extreme temperature ranges are experienced in Oregon’s high desert.
Populations of Nez Perce, Chinook, Mollalla, and others settled along the Columbia River Gorge, Klamath Basin, and points east. Many of the first European explorers to arrive sought the elusive Northwest Passage
The Corps of Discovery Expedition followed the Colombia River Gorge, reaching the Pacific Ocean in November of 1805. They would winter at Ft. Clatsop. Soon, pioneers would follow along what would become the Oregon Trail.
The gorge was created from volcanic lava flows and glacial floods. Windsurfers flock to the Columbia due to the powerful, steady winds off of the Cascade Mountains. Kayaking, biking, hiking, skiing and many other outdoor adventures can be found up and down the Gorge, but its icy crown is Mt. Hood. The Stratovolcano’s last eruption occurred in 1865 and was named after Lord Samuel Hood.
South along the Cascade Range, a sleeping volcano forms the mysterious Crater Lake. A well-planned hike along the trails to the remote brilliant, blue waters of the deepest lake in the U.S. is worth the effort. The pristine volcano is a wonder to see. Eastern Oregon takes on the color of a sunset in the undulating Painted Hills near Mitchell.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Explore all the wonders of Oregon! Join National Day Calendar as we celebrate the 33rd state’s history, people and culture. Uncover hidden treasures and explore Oregon’ diverse landscapes! Use #NationalOregonDay to share on social media.
Chief Comcomly - Tribal Leader - (1765 - 1830)
An expertly skilled navigator and negotiated, Chief Comcomly overcame the loss of an eye. The leader of the Chinook Indians, Comcomly traded with many different companies over his lifetime. During the Corp of Discovery Expedition, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark recorded in their journals their impressions of Comcomly, the village and the surrounding area.
Tsin-is-tum (Jennie Michel) - Folklorist - (1814 - 1905)
Tsin-is-tum was possibly one of the last living full-blooded Clatsop Indians. Also known as Jennie Michel, she was a Native American folklorist and told the oral history of her people. She was present at the time of the arrival of the Corps of Discovery Expedition and her testomony has been preserved by the Oregon Historical Society.
George Dantzig - Mathematician - (November 8, 1914 - May 13, 2005)
The real-life subject of urban legends and inspiration for Hollywood movies, George Dantzig is also a successful scientific mathematician. After returning to graduate work under Jerzy Neyman at Berkeley, Dantzig was late to class one day. On the board, there were two statistic problems that until Dantzig wrote them down for homework, had been unsolvable. And now they are part of a great story about a great mathematic mind.
Minoru Yasui - Attorney - (October 19, 1916 - November 12, 1986)
As a respected member of the legal community, Minoru Yasui took a stand against the constitutionality of curfew placed on Japanese Americans following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. His arrest and the eventual ruling against him would strip him of his right to practice law. Yasui would suffer more injustice due to the fear rising up in Americans, but he never turned his back on his country.
Linus Pauling - Chemist - (February 28, 1901 - August 19, 1994)
Two-time Nobel prize winner, Linus Pauling contributed advancements to medical science. The theoretical chemist is the only person to earn two unshared Nobel prizes. Pauling counts among his other accomplishments discovering the cause of sickle cell anemia and helping to create a synthetic plasma.
James Beard - Cook - (May 5, 1903 - January 21, 1985)
Had James Beard been a better actor, the face of American cuisine might have an entirely different quality. Beard’s call to the culinary world led to more than a dozen cookbooks, The James Beard Cooking School, cooking shows and inspired chefs and amateur cooks.
Bill Bowerman - Coach - (February 19, 1911 - December 24, 1999)
Bill Bowerman’s career started as a dedicated track coach who custom-made shoes for his athletes. His cobbling eventually turned into the company Nike, putting footwear on millions of athletes around the world.
Beverly Cleary - Author (April12, 1916 -)
Creator of fictional characters Romona Quimby, Ralph the Mouse and Henry Higgins, Beverly Cleary authored children’s books with a young reader’s perspective. She captured the angst only child could understand and spun it into story form and adventures.
Douglas Engelbart- Engineer - (January 30, 1925 - July 2, 2013)
Douglas Engelbart invented the first computer mouse in 1963 while employed as an engineer with Stanford Research Institute. Englebart’s pioneering developments included technologies such as video conferencing, graphical user interfaces and hypertext among many others.
Steve Prefontaine - Athlete - (January 25, 1951 - May 30, 1975)
Long distance runner, Steve Prefontaine competed in the 1972 Olympics, narrowly losing bronze to Ian Stewart. Aiming his sights on Montreal in 1976 and while training with the Oregon Track Club, Prefontaine earned every American long-distance record. A car accident would take his life in 1975.