Category Archives: Visual Instruction Slide


For those of you keeping track, we hit 150,000 views in our Flickr Commons account this weekend! So I send out a hearty thanks to all our loyal viewers and all our new friends — we wouldn’t be here without you.

And remember, we launch new sets every first and third Wednesday and you can set up an RSS feed so you don’t miss a single thing.

What’s coming? This week we’re heading to Crater Lake, care of the Visual Instruction Department Lantern slide collection. Here’s a sneak peek for those of you who can’t wait.

After that, we’re staying with this collection, but shifting to another great series of images from Oregon Industry, circa 1905, 1925, and 1940.

Watch for it: tomorrow is Wednesday!

We return home this week in Flickr Commons for a much deserved “trip to Mount Hood.” Thirty-five enchanting images that let you travel from Portland’s rose gardens, through Multnomah Falls, and up to the tippy top up the Upper Glacier on the mountain. Black and white or hand-colored, these glass lantern slides are an incredible look at the past…

And, as we’ve found with other sets from the Visual Instruction Department, there was a delightful description of the images for instructors found with the set! And, as an added bonus, we also found that the description booklet included wonderful details for the individual images, which are included in the “Description/Notes” field for each image in the set. If you can tear yourself away from the images, the extra information, written in 1930s-ese, is well worth reading.

Favorites? It’s hard to choose, but make sure you linger on images of the Rose Garden, the harbor scene, Mitchell Point Tunnel, and the glaciers of Mt. Hood!

We travel, you travel, they travel…

Yes, it’s that time of year when we pull out the virtual suitcases! The OSU Archives is taking a trip this summer via our Flickr Commons set “Take a Trip: Traveling and touring with the Visual Instruction Lantern Slides Collection,” and the bloggers at indicommons posted today on “Traveling Photography” from the New York Public Library’s “Japan / Kimbei Kusakabe” set.

And while you are there, also check out the set “Photochrom Travel View” from the Library of Congress and the blog post “Taking In Museums Through the Flickr Commons.”

Any other gems you’ve seen? Leave a comment and let us know!

Shasta and Sunset Routes

We’re releasing a new set on the Flickr Commons.  It’s a great look at some of the places along the Shasta and Sunset Routes.  Here’s a look at one of the photos.  Check out our Flickr Commons account on Wednesday, 15 July to see the rest!

Image Title: Palace of Fine Arts-San Francisco, California

Original Format: Lantern slides

Original Collection: Visual Instruction Department Lantern Slides

Item Number: P217:set 023 025

Restrictions: Permission to use must be obtained from the OSU Archives.

Click here for further information or a high resolution copy of this image.

Click here to view The Best of the Archives.

Click here to view Oregon State University’s other digital collections.

We’re happy for you to share this digital image within the spirit of The Commons; however, certain restrictions on high quality reproductions of the original physical version may apply. To read more about what “no known restrictions” means, please visit the OSU Archives website.

People and Places: Early “Oregon”

100-year-old Indian Woman astoria.jpg

We’re going back in time … The latest set in the “Take a Trip: Traveling and touring with the Visual Instruction Lantern Slides Collection” is dedicated to early Oregon images.

Our history is full of fascinating people and places: beautiful rivers, complicated relationships, and some great houses! This set is from the “Early Settlement of Oregon” lantern slide collection, though the land was certainly inhabited long before Oregon was named “Oregon,” boundary lines were drawn, and territorial governments were formed. The following quote (yes, the long one below…) comes from the lecture booklet that accompanied the slides, and although no exact date is given on the booklet, we can assume it was written in the 1920s or 1930s – it is an interesting look at the cultural and social assumptions and conceptions of the times.

“The earliest use of the word Oregon of which we have record was by Jonathan Carver who had, previous to the Revolutionary War, explored much territory westward from the Great Lakes. In 1778 he applied the name -Oregon- to the ‘River of the West’ and said that he had heard Indians living near the east slope of the Stony Mountains (Rockies) call the river by that name in 1766. In 1812, the poet Bryant, wrote: ‘The continuous woods Where rolls the Oregon and hears no sound Save his own lashings.’ The name was readily taken up and soon came to be applied to the vast region drained by the ‘River of the West,’ later the Columbia. When Oregon began to assume boundary lines, in the minds of Americans, it extended from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific and from about 42° North latitude, the northern boundary of Spanish America to 60°, the southern boundary of Russian America. These pictures emphasize a number of important people, places, and events in the settlement of Oregon.”

For a more 21st century history of Oregon, please visit these links: