Oregon - The Beaver State

  • Baker City, Oregon
  • Along the Elkhorn Scenic Byway
  • John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Sheep Rock Unit
  • Journey Through Time Scenic Byway
  • The Portland skyline
  • Shaniko Ghost Town
  • Strawberry Mountain Wilderness
  • Wheeler County Courthouse in Fossil
Multnomah Falls
Multnomah Falls

Luther Cressman found evidence of human habitation in the Fort Rock area of Oregon that dated to 13,200 years ago. By 8,000 BCE, there were settlements scattered across much of the state. By the time the first European explorers arrived in Oregon, the Native American groups had formed into the Bannock, Chasta, Chinook, Kalapuya, Klamath, Molalla, Nez Perce, Takelma and Umpqua tribes.

Lewis and Clark traveled through the area in 1804-1805 and wintered at Fort Clatsop, near the mouth of the Columbia River. 1811 saw the Brit David Thompson navigate the Columbia River and claim the whole area for England. That same year, John Jacob Astor of New York sent men west to build Fort Astoria at the mouth of the Columbia. During the War of 1812, Great Britain gained control of the area, only to see a joint British-American occupancy established in 1818. The British held de facto control of the area until emigrants from the eastern states started to arrive via the Oregon Trail in 1841. In 1846 a border was established between the British and American interests at the 49th parallel (the border between Washington State and British Columbia). Oregon Territory was officially organized and recognized by Congress in 1848, and became the State of Oregon in 1859 (admitted to the Union with a "whites only" clause in the state constitution to try to avoid the controversy between "free" and "slave" states).

Mount Hood from the north
Mount Hood from the north
Fast Facts about Oregon
Capital: Salem
Largest City: Portland
Admitted to the Union: February 14, 1859: 33rd
Area: 98,466 square miles : 9th
Highest Point: Mount Hood : 11,249'
Lowest Point: Pacific Ocean : 0'
2010 Oregon Population Demographics
Total Population 3,831,074
Males 1,896,002
Females 1,935,072
Population by Age
Under 18 866,453
18 & over 2,964,621
20-24 253,048
25-34 524,144
35-49 762,404
50-64 785,762
65 & over 533,533
Population by Ethnicity
Hispanic or Latino 450,062
Non Hispanic or Latino 3,381,012
Population by Race
White 3,204,614
African-American 69,206
Asian 141,263
Native American 53,203
Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 13,404
Other 204,625
Two or more 144,759
Map of Oregon