OAES History

WHEN

President Grover Cleveland signed the Hatch Act on March 2, 1887.  It provided annual funds for agricultural experiment stations at land-grant colleges in each state and territory.  The Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station was created the following year.  The first director, Edgar Grimm, an agricultural chemist, was appointed on July 2, 1888.

WHERE

Oregon Governor Sylvester Pennoyer directed the Board of Regents of the State Agriculture College of the State of Oregon, in Corvallis, Oregon’s land-grant school, to administer the Hatch Act grant of $15,000.  The grant boosted the college’s entire budget by 50 percent.  Today, the State Agricultural College is Oregon State University.  In the beginning, the Agricultural Experiment Station consisted of a single laboratory and the college farm, 35 acres of land donated by citizens of Benton County on what today is the lower OSU campus.

EXPANSION

The first branch of the Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station was opened in 1901 at Union in Eastern Oregon, near La Grande.  Today, the Agricultural Experiment Station has research facilities throughout the state, each doing studies tied to the conditions and needs of the area.  They are headquartered at Aurora, Hood River, Hermiston, Pendleton, Ontario, Burns, Powell Butte, Madras, Klamath Falls, Medford, Newport, Astoria, and Portland.

PERSONNEL

Today the Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station is the research arm of Oregon State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences.  It has more than 400 scientists in 28 academic units in four OSU colleges --- Agricultural Sciences, Health and Human Sciences, Science, and Veterinary Medicine.  They work on projects related to food and fiber production, processing and marketing, wise use of natural resources, human nutrition, forestry, commercial fishing and other topics important to the economic and environmental well-being of Oregonians.

 

AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION DIRECTORS

Edgar Grimm --- 1888-1890
Benjamin L. Arnold
--- 1890-92 (OAC President, 1872 - 1892)
John M. Bloss
--- 1892-96 (OAC President, 1892 - 1896)
H.B. Miller
--- 1896-97 (OAC President, 1896 - 1897)
Thomas M. Gatch
--- 1897-1907 (OAC President, 1897 - 1907)
William Jasper Kerr
--- 1907 (OAC President, 1907 - 1932)
James Withycombe
--- 1908-14 (Governor of Oregon, 1914 - 1919)
A.B. Cordley
--- 1914-20
James T. Jardine
--- 1920-31
William A. Schoenfeld
--- 1931-50
F.E. Price
--- 1950-65
G. Burton Wood
--- 1966-1975
John R. Davis
--- 1975-1985
Robert E. Witters
--- 1985-86, Acting
Steven L. Davis
--- Jan 1987-Sept 1987, Acting
Thayne R. Dutson
--- Oct 1987- 2008 (CAS Dean, Nov 1993 - 2008)
Sonny Ramaswamy
  --- Aug 2009 - April 2012 (CAS Dean, Aug 2009 - April 2012)
Daniel J. Arp --- May 2012 -   (CAS Dean May 2012 -   )

 

BRANCH STATION ESTABLISHMENT DATES

1901 – Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center;
1909 – Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Hermiston;
1913 – Mid-Columbia Agricultural Research & Extension Center, Hood River;
1927 – Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Center, Pendleton (Moro Branch, 1909);
1932 – Southern Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station Medford;
1934 – Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center, Burns;
1937 – Klamath Basin Research and Extension Center, Klamath Falls;
1947 – Malheur Agricultural Experiment Station, Ontario;
1947 – Central Oregon Agricultural Research & Extension Center, Powell Butte;
1957 – North Willamette Research & Extension Center, Aurora;
1989 – Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station, Newport (Astoria, 1939);
2001 – Food Innovation Center, Portland.

BRANCH STATION DIRECTORS

Central Oregon Agriculture Research Center

  • Marvin Butler
  • Clint Jacks

Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station

  • Gil Sylvia (1998 – Present)
  • Lavern Weber (1989 - 1998)

OSU Seafood Research and Extension Center

  • Christina A. Mireles DeWitt (2011 – Present)
  • Michael T. Morrissey (1991 – 2009)
  • David Crawford (1966 – 1991)
  • Edward Harvey (1941 – 1965)
  • R. W. Allgeier (04/1940 – 12/1940)

Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Ctr. (Pendleton & Moro)

  • Steve Petrie (2000 – 2013)
  • Richard Smiley (1985 – 2000)
  • Steve Lund (1975 – 1985)
  • Charles Rohde (1970 - 1975)

Pendleton Experiment Station (Pendleton and Sherman Stations merged in 1970 to form CBARC)

  • Charles Rohde (1966 – 1970)
  • Merrill Oveson (1948 – 1966)
  • George Mitchell (1928 - 1948)

Sherman Experiment Station

  • J. T. McDermid (1963 – 1970)
  • W. E. Hall (1953 – 1963)
  • George Mitchell (1947 – 1953)
  • Merrill Oveson (1937 – 1947)
  • David Stephens (1911 – 1937)
  • H. J. C. Umberger (1910 - 1911)

Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center (Burns)

Burns and Union were separate stations until 1974.  Thereafter, EOARC consisted of Burns and Union Stations.

  • Dave Bohnert (2012 – Present)
  • Timothy DelCurto (2004 – 2012)
  • Martin Vavra (1984 – 2003)
  • R. J. Raleigh (1969 – 1984)
  • W. A. Sawyer (1944 – 1969)
  • K. C. Ikler (1941 – 1943)
  • K. B. Platt (1939 – 1941)
  • R. G. Johnson (1936 - 1939)

Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center (Union)

  • Timothy DelCurto (2003 – Present)
  • Martin Vavra (1973 – 2002)
  • Jack A. B. McArthur (1956 – 1973)
  • Harry G. Avery (1945 – 1956)
  • Dick E. Richards (1932 – 1944)
  • Robert Withycombe (1906 – 1931)
  • George Gammie (1904 – 1906)
  • A. B. Leckenby (1901 - 1904)

Harney Branch Station (this station was closed in 1954)

  • currently being researched (1943 – 1954)
  • O. Shattuck (1919 – 1943)
  • J. H. Martin (1915 – 1918)
  • L. R. Breithaupt (1911 – 1918)

Food Innovation Center

  • Michael Morrissey (2007 – Present)
  • John Henry Wells (1990 – 2006)

Hermiston Agricultural Research & Extension

  • Phil Hamm (2005 – Present)
  • Gary Reed (1985 – 2005)
  • Steve Lund (1975 – 1985)
  • Tom Davidson (1957 – 1975)
  • Carl A. Larson (1945 – 1957)
  • H. K. Dean (1919 – 1945)
  • R. W. Allen (1909 - 1919)

Klamath Basin Research & Extension Center

  • William W. Riggs (2007 – Present)
  • Ronald L. Hathaway (2005 – 2007)
  • Kenneth A. Rykbost (1987 – 2006)
  • George Carter (1972 – 1987)
  • Alvin Eugene Gross (1937 - 1972)

Malheur Experiment Station

  • Clint Shock (1984 – Present)
  • Charles Stanger (1982 – 1984)
  • Dwayne Buxton (1978 – 1982)
  • Neil Hoffman (1946 – 1977)
  • currently being researched (1942 – 1946)

Mid-Columbia Agricultural Research and Extension Center

  • Brian Tuck (2010 – Present)
  • Peter Shearer (2008 – 2010)
  • Clark Seavert (1999 – 2008)
  • Eugene Mielke (1984 – 1999)
  • Robert Spotts (1983 – 1984)
  • Walter Mellenthin (1952 – 1983)
  • Leroy Childs (1914 - 1952)

North Willamette Research Extension Center

  • Mike Bondi
  • Clark Seavert
  • Ronald Mobley
  • Delbert Hemphill
  • Lloyd Martin

Southern Oregon Research & Extension Ctr.

  • Philip VanBuskirk (2004 – Present)
  • Mike Howell (1993 – 2004)
  • Ron Mobley (1988 – 1993)
  • John Yungen (1981 – 1988)
  • Porter Lombard (1963 – 1980)
  • Harold White (1953 – 1963)
  • E. S. Degman (1947 – 1953)
  • Frank Reimer (1911 - 1947)

 

Please visit University Archive for more readings on OAES history.


Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station
224 Bexell Hall, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331- 8521
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