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NW Life | History | local | Oregon Historical Photo Of The Week

Oregon Historical Photo: Celebrating Oregon's Statehood


A civic celebration in Portland, circa 1858-1859. At a referendum in 1857, voters approved Oregon’s first constitution and petitioned for statehood. Oregon was admitted to the Union one year and three months later.

A civic celebration in Portland, circa 1858-1859. At a referendum in 1857, voters approved Oregon’s first constitution and petitioned for statehood. Oregon was admitted to the Union one year and three months later.

The Oregon Historical Society. #5488

Every week, Oregon Experience shares a photo highlighting the state’s diverse, exciting history.

For thousands of years, native tribes thrived in what became known as Oregon Country. Then mountain men and fur trappers came for adventure and wealth, followed by waves of Euro-American pioneers who brought their hopes and prejudices to the Willamette Valley’s agricultural lands.

By 1857, more than 50,000 people called Oregon home. Only white men could vote and they petitioned for statehood.  As the constitution was written, Oregonians rejected slavery but excluded free African Americans from moving to or living in the state.  Oregon became the 33rd state in the Union on Feb. 14, 1859.
 
Watch the Oregon Experience documentary “Road to Statehood” to learn how Oregon Fever changed the territory’s landscape forever.

Road to Statehood

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