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Explore Oregon's natural history at the library

Check out traveling exhibit and books


In 2009 Oregon celebrated its 150th year of statehood, but our beloved state has a much longer and richer history. Throughout the month of May, the West Linn Public Library will be hosting a traveling Oregon Historical Society exhibit on Oregon’s natural history called “Oregon: 150 Years of Statehood, 150 Million Years in the Making.”

In a series of 16 panels filled with stunning visuals, viewers will learn about the processes that shaped our land as well as the ways we utilize that land to its fullest potential (pinot noir and microbrew, anyone?).

From the Cascadia subduction zone, which is the creator of many of our most beautiful landmarks as well as our most deadly threats (volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis), to the mineralogical and chemical makeup of our soil, which allows our farmers to grow such a diverse range of crops, Oregon has a unique landscape and a promising future.

Of course, once you see the exhibit you’ll want to learn even more about the Beaver State. Here are some books to help you learn more about Oregon’s natural and cultural history.

“Oregon's Promise: An Interpretive History” by David Peterson del Mar

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Check out Oregon: Preserving the Spirit and Beauty of Our Land by Tim Palmer at the library. This book explores familiar and neglected people and movements in the state's history, while challenging readers to view Oregon's past, present and future in a new way. “Oregon's Promise” moves beyond the more familiar episodes of Oregon history to discuss indigenous peoples before and after contact with whites, the profound and evolving impact of broad forces like industrialization and suburbanization, and the varied fortunes of a growing stream of people from across the world who have sought the good life in Oregon.

“Great and Minor Moments in Oregon History” edited by Dick Pintarich

This book highlights the significant and the unexpected, from the prehistoric to the present, with in-depth, thought-provoking and often humorous glimpses of the personalities and peculiarities that inhabit Oregon's past. Readers learn about the forces of nature that created Oregon over eons, the natural gifts that inspired the mythic world of its natives and what it was like for Lewis and Clark to spend an Oregon winter on the north coast without modern tourist conveniences. The book also covers Portland's booming optimism at the start of the 20th century, its seamy underworld of the 1950s and the city's illustrious sports and political heritage.

“Oregon: Preserving the Spirit and Beauty of Our Land” by Tim Palmer

Palmer presents a vivid portrait of this stunningly beautiful state, from its cliff-walled canyons to icy glacial peaks, from its ancient green forests to wave-tossed beaches. Illuminating photographs and a descriptive, revealing text take readers across the entire state, exploring the Pacific shore, the Columbia River Gorge, the Cascade Mountains and the dry lands and mountains of eastern Oregon. Filled with the inherent treasures of the state, Oregon is a call to the challenge of preserving the land. This sophisticated, elegant book is an invitation to residents, visitors, armchair travelers and to all who appreciate the natural landscape.




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