Corvallis in Benton County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
Avery Park Applegate Trail Kiosk
Southern Route to Oregon
Southern Route to Oregon
The first emigrants to trek the new "Southern Road" left with the trailblazers from Fort Hall in early August 1846. With Levi Scott acting as guide, while Jesse Applegate traveled ahead to mark the route, the hardy emigrants blazed a wagon trail through nearly 500 miles of wilderness arriving in the upper Willamette Valley in November. Emigrant travel continued along the Applegate Trail in later years and contributed greatly to the settlement of southern Oregon and the Willamette Valley.
Education has dominated the economy of Corvallis since pioneer times. From Corvallis College, founded in 1852, to establishment of a state school in 1885, education has attracted students to the town. In 1887 construction commenced on a new campus west of the business district. Oregon Agricultural College became Oregon State College in 1932 and is today Oregon State University.
Crossed Mary's River...near where the grist mill now stands, it being at that place about 50 feet across. Here was found another pole cabin, more attractive to us than a gorgeous palace would be now...inhabited by a lonely civilized “white” man, whose name was J. C. Avery.
Recollection of 1846
For hundreds of families, the Marys River was nearly the last to be crossed. Its steep, muddy banks, the onset of winter rains, and an uncertain bottom added to the danger. By the time emigrants reached the Marys River they knew how to disassemble wagons, ferry by means of wagon box or canoe, and they knew to be careful! With the promised land near at hand, caution was in order at the Marys River.
...the next stream was Mary's River, this was also full, here we took our wagons to places and ferried over on the smallest canoe I ever saw... ”
Rev. A. E. Garrison
Recollection of 1846
All the way there is fine soil, and the low grounds about the creeks, superior pasture, land and very extensive to the E. Some woods along the banks of the rivers. And on the high ground oaks here and there. The road for the next 4 miles lay along the base of some hills thickly timbered with oak and composed of rich [fert]tile soil & pretty well covered with grass. Large tracts of open ground extend to the E. The road now lay along an extensive plain, some parts of it swamp, to Laurie [Mary's] river where we are camped not far from its discharge into a Channel of the Willamet.
Hudson's Bay Company, June 1, 1834
From earliest years, Marysville was on the road through the west Willamette Valley, by way of Yamhill Falls and across the Rickreall, Luckiamute, and Long Tom Rivers, to the upper Willamette and the [illegible] country.
Howard McKinley [illegible]
Willamette Landing, 1847
Oregon was an issue of great national concern to the U.S. by the 1840s. Overland emigration began in 1843 and within two years nearly 3,000 settlers arrived. The presidential campaign of 1844 was characterized by James K. Polk’s slogan “Fifty-Four Forty or Fight!” Polk was prepared to fight unless the British rescinded claims to all lands south of latitude 54 degrees, 40 minutes. Once elected, he gave Britain one year to resolve the “Oregon Question.” Eager to avoid war and facing domestic troubles at home, Britain gave in. The United States secured a vast empire—today's Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and western Montana.
Away, away with these cobweb issues of rights of discovery, exploration, settlement, contiguity, etc.... [The American claim] is the right of our manifest destiny to overspread and to possess the whole of the continent which Providence has given us for the development of the great experiment of liberty and federative self-government entrusted to us. It is the right such as that of the tree to the space of air and earth suitable for the full expansion of its principle and destiny of growth.
John L. O’Sullivan
New York Morning News
December 27, 1848
“Never! Never! We do not wish to leave our Country,” argued Daboe, one of the headmen of the Luckiamutes. His fellow leader, Scho-la-que, told the commissioners that his people, whose lands reached from Marys River to the Luckiamute, wished to remain “ in the land where their Fathers had lived, and where all their relatives and friends were buried.” Finally, the commissioners agreed. A treaty was signed on May 2, 1851, but the Senate declined to approve it. The Indians did not ceded their lands until 1855 when a new treaty was negotiated, signed, and ratified. They were removed to the Grande Ronde Reservation.
Your Great Father thinks you would be more happy and better off, if you would select a piece of land beyond the Cascade Mountains four your future Home; and sell the lands you now claim, to him, for which, he will pay you in money, Blankets, shoes,
Col. Beverly Allen
Speaking to the Luckiamute Band
April 30, 1851
Erected by Applegate Trail Coalition.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Roads & Vehicles • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Applegate Trail series list.
Location. 44° 33.306′ N, 123° 16.327′ W. Marker is in Corvallis, Oregon, in Benton County. Marker is on SW Avery Park Drive, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Corvallis OR 97333, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Kings Valley Millstone (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Incubator House & Poultry Building (approx. half a mile away); Oregon State University (approx. 0.7 miles away); Capitol of Territorial Oregon (approx. 0.7 miles away); First Congregational Church (approx. 0.7 miles away); Madison Avenue (approx. 0.7 miles away); The Corvallis Arts Center (approx. 0.7 miles away); Home of Fred J. Porter (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Corvallis.
Credits. This page was last revised on May 2, 2018. It was originally submitted on April 27, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. This page has been viewed 118 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on April 27, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 5. submitted on May 1, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 6. submitted on April 27, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 7. submitted on May 1, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 8. submitted on April 27, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.