Cascade Mountains History Project
Willamette National Forest, Oregon, 1997
by Carol Winkler, Zone Archaeologist, and Jane Agar, District Archaeologist
Six volunteers assisted us in our efforts to catalog historical materials related to the forest, especially our vast photographic collection. We reviewed the photographs and coded the information on input forms for later data entry and computer-image digitizing. Eventually, the collection will be indexed and accessible by computer. We also worked on cataloging the collection from a prehistoric site and prepared it for curation at the Museum of Anthropology at the University of Oregon (UO). To gain a perspective on collections management, participants toured the UO Museum of Anthropology curation facility to see how the state’s archaeological collections are stored. The skills and interest of our experienced PIT volunteers made the week a productive and enjoyable one!
To round out the project, volunteers, district employees, and local residents were treated to a variety of presentations. We received a visit from former district ranger C. B. McFarland, portrayed by Steve Coady, who reminisced about his days in the hills. In addition, we were enlightened by a slide show on local history, “Hidden Legacy”; geologist Mike Long’s multimedia presentation, “Geology of the Western Cascades”; flintknapper Alex Atkins’s presentation on prehistoric lithic technology; a video on historic logging practices, “Whistle Punks, Sawdust, and Salt Air”; and volunteer Ron Johnson’s slide show, “Historic Fire Lookouts of the Willamette National Forest.”