Finn J.D. John

"Offbeat Oregon:" Unusual stories of historic Oregon ... suggestions welcomed.

Image: University of Oregon Libraries ##
The first page of the “Voters’ Book of Remembrance,” A.C. Edmunds’ double-sided election’s-eve flier, which insulted Portland voters badly enough to turn them off both temperance and women’s suffrage for nearly 40 years.

Offbeat Oregon: The ‘own-goal’ champ of state history

This is a continuation of the Offbeat Oregon column that appeared in last week’s Connections. A.C. Edmunds’ experience in Portland before the Civil War had been so short, and by his personal ...

Image: Library of Congress ## This drawing, from an 1874 issue of Frank Leslie’s Weekly, shows the Ohio women who were the Portland temperance workers’ primary inspiration, singing and praying before a saloon. This scene, drawn by S.B. Morton, is set in Logan, Ohio.

Offbeat Oregon: With a friend like A.C. Edmunds, suffragists needed no enemies

One of the most dramatic things that can happen in a soccer game is an “own-goal.” Not the kind where a player on offense bounces a shot off a defender and into the net, but the full-on ...

Image: Oregon Historical Quarterly ## The Oregon City Transportation Co.’s riverboat Pomona in a circa 1899 promotional image, just below Willamette Falls.

Offbeat Oregon: Sternwheelers on the Willamette River sometimes towed barns, caught flying fish

The Willamette River was running high and wild on the morning of Feb. 5, 1890, as Alden and Arthur Graham set out from Oregon City in their sternwheel riverboat for the daily run to Portland. Offbeat ...

Image: Leland John ## This painting shows an old “bowpicker” gillnetting boat on blocks by the river.

Offbeat Oregon: Astoria, San Francisco once powered nation’s marine-engine industry

Between 1908 and 1911, something happened that almost certainly saved hundreds of men from drowning on the Columbia River Bar. Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes ...

Image: Oregon Historical Quarterly ## When they first arrived in Salem, Drs. Adeline and Gideon Weed rented an office on the second floor of this book shop, in 1858.

Offbeat Oregon: Asahel Bush crossed swords with state’s first woman doctor, and lost

On any list of Oregon “firsts,” there’s one name that almost never pops up: Dr. Adeline M. Weed. Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes about ...

Image: Oregon State Bar Bulletin ## This family portrait shows Martha Carson Lavadour, David and Letitia’s daughter, with her husband Narcisse and son Nelson, circa 1875.

Offbeat Oregon: Neighbor’s theft of widow and orphans’ home was too much for jury

  Especially in the late 1800s, the Oregon frontier was no stranger to acts of judicial lynching — where the local legal system was corrupted to provide cover for murder. Offbeat Oregon Finn ...

Eaaumi/ Wikimedia ## The Abraham Tichner house as it appears today. Tichner had it built for his family in 1918.

Offbeat Oregon: How Abe Tichner hustled the rubes at 1870s county fairs

When Abe Tichner died, on April 29 of 1935, he was one of Portland’s most respected citizens. Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes about unusual and little-known ...

Image: Oregon Historical Society ## Portland mayors Terry Schrunk and Dorothy McCullough Lee as they looked when they first took office — he at age 44, she at 48.

Offbeat Oregon: Mayors Lee, Schrunk set tone for city’s modern era

The history of Portland mayors in the 20th century largely comes down to the story of the struggle of progressive reformers against various forms of corruption and vice. Offbeat Oregon Finn ...

Image: Library of Congress ##
George H. Williams as he appeared shortly after the Civil War. By the time he was inaugurated as mayor of Portland, Williams was in his 80s.

Offbeat Oregon: In 1800s Portland, at least one mayor paid to play

Today’s article continues our round-up of colorful mayors in Oregon’s largest and most powerful city —starting with one of the most famously dubious politicians ever to grace the office: ...

Image: Portland Printing House ##
Joseph Simon, whose first bid for election as Portland Mayor ended in a tie, as he appeared roughly 15 years later when serving in the United States Senate.

Offbeat Oregon: Frontier-era mayors were a surprisingly dramatic bunch

Frontier-era Portland mayors were a surprisingly dramatic bunch Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes about unusual and little-known aspects of Oregon history.

Image: U.S. Navy ##
The U.S.S. Peacock attacking the H.M.S. Nautilus in 1815 just after the War of 1812 — which the Peacock’s skipper was unaware had ended.

Offbeat Oregon: Skill, stout shipbuilding kept Peacock shipwreck fatality-free

With all the ships that have come to grief there over the years, and all the sailors who have drowned as a result, it’s a little ironic that the shipwreck that gave Peacock Spit its name ...

Image: Oregon Historical Society ## A letter sent by Nimrod O’Kelly to Oregon Territory Representative Joseph Lane in 1851, detailing the trouble he’d had in getting his family to join him on his land claim in Benton County.

Offbeat Oregon: State’s first murder defendant saved from gallows by his wife

It’s hard to tell, just from reading between the lines of the court documents; but it’s probably a safe guess that Nimrod O’Kelly’s neighbors did not like him. Offbeat Oregon Finn ...

Image: Ben Maxwell/ Salem Public Library ## The municipal jail from the ghost town of Greenhorn, which was rescued from the decaying townsite in 1963 by unknown parties and brought to Canyon City, as it appeared shortly after its arrival. Built in the early 1910s, this stacked-board construction was a popular low-cost way to build a structure that would be hard to escape from.

Offbeat Oregon: Law’s operations in frontier Oregon were rough and not always ready

If ever there was a great time and place in which to be a criminal, it was the frontier Oregon Territory. Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes about unusual and little-known ...

## The U.S.S. Oregon, in her heyday, is proudly showcased on this early-1900s hand-tinted postcard.

Offbeat Oregon: Battleship U.S.S. Oregon was lost in Pearl Harbor attack – sort of

Dec. 7, 1941, was a bad day for American battleships. Offbeat Oregon Finn J.D. John, an instructor at OSU, writes about unusual and little-known aspects of Oregon history.

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