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As It Was: Medford Poet and Artist Writes Paean to Oregon Statehood

The Medford, Ore., poet and artist, Atlanta Parker Satchwell, was also a secretary of the Commercial Club and the Chamber of Commerce, leader of many civic organizations, and the local chapter of the League of Western Writers.  For the 75th Jubilee of Oregon statehood, she wrote this “Anthem to Oregon” for the League.  It is contained in her handwritten notebook of poetry now in possession of the Southern Oregon Historical Society.  It was set to the tune of “Maryland My Maryland.”

“You ask what state I love the best.

Oregon my Oregon

The fairest land in all the West

Oregon my Oregon

From yonder mountains highest crest

To where old oceans’ billows rest

Oh fairest state than all the rest,

Oregon my Oregon

See yonder fields of waving green,

Oregon my Oregon

With peace and plenty in the train.

Oregon my Oregon

See how its wonderous valleys’ shine

From yonder sunset’s purpling line.

Oh happy state--oh state of mine.

Oregon my Oregon”

Oregon celebrates its 160th birthday today, Valentine’s Day.
 

Sources: Satchwell, Atlanta Parker. Unpublished notebook of handwritten poems. Southern Oregon Historical Society Archives MS 711; Post, Maude. "Oregon's Jubilee." Medford Mail Tribune, 13 Feb. 1934.

Alice Mullaly is a graduate of Oregon State and Stanford University, and taught mathematics for 42 years in high schools in Nyack, New York; Mill Valley, California; and Hedrick Junior High School in Medford. Alice has been an Southern Oregon Historical Society volunteer for nearly 30 years, the source of many of her “As It Was” stories.