Category Archives: Gerald Williams Collection

New Flickr Commons set full of images from the Santiam Valley

There is so much to love about Oregon… And so much to love about the fabulous pictures in the Gerald Williams collection! Heading into the Santiam Valley, our newest Flickr Commons set has images from all seasons and all sorts of locales (and of all sorts of locals). Enjoy the waterfalls, front porches, camping grounds, highways, and a little bit of snow.

Two Men Boating on the Santiam River, circa 1910

Want to learn more about what’s in the Williams Collection? Check out the finding aid!

Want to see more Flickr C images from the Williams Collections? We have those too.

And, of course, there are many more on ourSCARC digital collection site!

Driven by curiosity?

Guide to the Oregon Community Surveys, 1925-1936

Another great collection level finding aid just waiting for a researcher interested in playing a history detective!

This very rich, albeit very small measuring in at a 1/2 cubic foot, collection has scads of data about 4 small communities in Oregon. The Oregon Community Surveys consist of data and narrative summaries documenting the schools, churches, social organizations, and economic status of the rural communities of Clatskanie, Condon, Cottage Grove, and Riddle, Oregon.

Why is this collection worth looking at? Data for the Oregon Community Surveys was compiled in 1925, 1930, and 1936, with the latter being done by C.S. Hoffman, Assistant State Supervisor of Rural Research, under the auspices of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Works Progress Administration. But what makes this really great is the historical detail you get about these communities in the early part of the last century.

Each survey includes information about the demographics of the community. Predictably, this includes the total population, but it also provides incredible information about the number of individuals identified as “native born,” “foreign born,” and “negroes;” the number and type of farms and agricultural cooperatives; the types of industries and businesses; the names of influential individuals in the community; the medical services available; and information about charities, crime, social activities, and civic organizations.

You’ll also find extensive information about the community’s schools, including information about enrollment, facilities, the library and equipment, teachers, and school clubs and organizations. You’ll also find detailed information about each church in the community, with data on the church facilities, finances, membership, and religious education programs. Finally, the surveys also include narrative summaries and comments written by the surveyors.

The provenance and custodial history are unclear, hence the call for a sleuth, but we’d love you to dive into the box!

Curious about the images in this post? You’ll find many, many more of the great pictures of Oregon’s rural communities in our digital collections, especially the image-heavy and delightfully robust Gerald W. Williams Collection

And while we have your research interest piqued …

Make sure to check out the Rural Communities Explorer, an Oregon Explorer digital library portal that “provides public access to reliable and up-to-date social, demographic, economic, and environmental information about Oregon’s rural counties and communities.”

The Misfits

You know that any Flickr Commons set with a clever title like this one will be full of great pictorial treats…

And the set name is not misleading, you’ll find a grand variety of fabulous images from the Gerald Williams Collection!

From horses to shipwrecks, bathing beauties to tragic fires, people sitting on logs to canons, this set abounds with randomness…

A plank road? A grandstand? No doubt you’ll enjoy them all.


High bridges, low bridges … Color bridges, sepia bridges … Boats under bridges, people on bridges … Does this sound like a Dr. Seuss story? Nope, it’s a new set in Flickr Commons!

Joining the 8 other sets in the Gerald Williams Commons collection, this new set will make a little dizzy and others feel like heading out & onto the roads to explore the wonderful bridges Oregon has to offer!

Begin at the beginning?

A year of interacting, sharing, and celebrating what we have and what we know. We had a few big “Wow, thanks!” moments in 2009, but this year we want more …

We begin again, appropriately back where we started last February, with images from the Gerald Williams Collection. It’s true—we’re going to have a whole month of weekly releases! And with the first, “Towns & Buildings,” we want to hear from you.

At a loss where to start? You can always begin with the simple browse method, scanning through the images in this Flickr set … But for those who would like a little more direction, those who like “assignments,” those who feel comfortable with a list – here you go!

You can start simple … What can you find about the history or Astoria, Clatskanie, Timber, or Amity Oregon? Or you can dive into this list and let us know what you learn about:

Research until you can’t learn any more. Just make sure you include your factoid treasures with us in the comments field. No matter what, share, share, share!

New Flickr Commons Collection: “Western Waters”

Say “welcome!” to a new Flickr Commons collection dedicated to all things water — or at least all things water related … Or at least all things related to waters in the west …

The idea came from OSU Libraries’ own Michael Boock and the members in the Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA), who wanted to showcase and spotlight the great collections featured in the Western Waters Digital Library (WWDL). So we’re doing our part to share OSU’s contributions with the Flickrverse!

The images in these sets are from our “Pacific Northwest Stream Survey” digital collection, which includes over 1000 field images taken between 1934 and 1945 and spanning the 390 streams in the Columbia River Basin. But the collection is also part of the Western Waters Digital Library, which includes classic water literature, government reports, legal transcripts, water project records, personal papers, photographic collections, and audio/video materials associated with the major river basins of the Western United States.

Cleverly called “Dam It,” the November 4th set includes images of roaring and rushing water, folks fishing, and a few salmon swimming … Enjoy these 19 images, straight from the late 1930s!

Keep your eyes open and your RSS feeds on, November 18th we’ll launch another set with a new set of images of people fishing at Celilo Fallls. Can’t wait until then? Check out the Celilo Falls images in the Gerald Williams Collection Flickr set, where you’ll find images like this one …

and this one …

and another one of my all-time favorites, this one …

Want to learn more about the Western Waters Digital Library?

Want to learn more about the Greater Western Library Association?