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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.
Oregon Governor Sylvester Pennoyer directed the Board of Regents of the State Agriculture College of the State of Oregon (the state’s land-grant college located in Corvallis, Oregon) 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 OAES 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.
The first branch station 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, Madras, Klamath Falls, Medford, Newport, Astoria, and Portland.
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, Public 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, commercial fishing and other topics important to the economic and environmental well-being of Oregonians.
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 - 2018)
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 (sold in 2018);
1957 – North Willamette Research & Extension Center, Aurora;
1989 – Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station, Newport (Astoria, 1939);
2001 – Food Innovation Center, Portland.
Burns and Union were separate stations until 1974. Thereafter, EOARC consisted of Burns and Union Stations.