News Editorial, A Prosperous Future

This 1877 West Shore editorial, reprinted from Portland Oregonian, predicts that more immigration into eastern Oregon will result in more agricultural development and an increase in the general prosperity of the state. Jewish-German immigrant Leopold Samuel published the West Shore in Portland between 1875 and 1891, promoting population and economic growth throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Thousands of miners first entered the inland part of the Pacific Northwest in the 1860s, when gold was discovered east of the Cascade Mountains. Miners, supplies, and minerals traveled by steamboat on the Columbia River, which connected Portland to the eastern Oregon, eastern Washington Territory, and Idaho Territory. In the 1870s, cattle and sheep ranchers moved to eastern Oregon to capitalize on rising meat prices and the abundant native bunchgrasses, which became over-grazed within a decade. Wheat farmers also immigrated east in search of inexpensive land.

Portland’s location at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers, making it the shipping center for the entire Pacific Northwest. Wheat and cattle traveled by steamboats down the Columbia River to Portland, where they were packed on to ocean-going ships for trade to California, England, and Asia.

Further Reading:
Cleaver, J.D. “L. Samuel and the West Shore: Images of a Changing Northwest.” Oregon Historical Quarterly 94, 1995: 166-224.

Willard "Bill" Leonard, “A Boyhood with Sheep in the Oregon Desert.” Oregon Historical Quarterly 76, 1975: 333-358; & OHQ 77, 1976: 5-36; 149-173.

Willingham, William F. “Family and Community on the Eastern Oregon Frontier.” Oregon Historical Quarterly 95, 1994: 176-203.

Written by Kathy Tucker, © Oregon Historical Society, 2002.

This entry was last updated on March 17, 2018