For the first time in a couple of years, our family will come together this next week to celebrate the holidays. We do so with a renewed sense of the preciousness of time together, and also the nearness of tragedy. It’s especially jarring when tragedy occurs in the midst of celebration as it did on Christmas Eve in 1894 when a terrible fire occurred in the community hall on the second floor of the Chrisman general store in Silver Lake. Though it is the deadliest fire to have occurred in Oregon history, until this month it has not been included in the Oregon Encyclopedia, an authoritative and free resource on all things Oregon.

Several years ago, I added an entry on Bernard Daly, and now one on the Silver Lake Fire. Take a look at the entries and while you’re there, check out some of the other entries related to Lake County – Abert Rim, Lakeview, Reub Long, and Paisley Caves. I’m hoping others will be added in the years to come.

My best wishes to all for happy holidays and the new year, the 100-year anniversary of the first awarding of the Bernard Daly scholarship.

Note: Many thanks to Larry Landis, former OSU director of Special Collections and Archives who first encouraged me to write an entry on Bernard Daly for the Oregon Encyclopedia.

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