Eugene in Lane County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
Genesis of a City
Eugene and Mary Skinner emigrated in 1845 to California, and then moved north to settle temporarily in Polk County. The Skinners selected a Donation Land Claim here at the head of the Willamette Valley in 1846 and Eugene, together with hired hands, built a small, one-room cabin. The Skinners moved into their “new home in the far off west” in May 1847, and “for 4 months less 3 days,” Eugene recalled, “Mary never saw the face of a White woman, or child excep[t] our own....”
Like many pioneers, the Skinner were industrious. They hired men to till the prairie and plant wheat, established an orchard, and in April 1851, Eugene Skinner began platting a town. From modest beginnings at Skinner’s Butte, the city of Eugene emerged as the largest town in the upper Willamette Valley.
A Place of Refuge
...Oct 1846 moved into the House…. On the 8th day of November/46 I left
Letter to the Surveyor General of Oregon (1851)
A small pole cabin… the first sign of civilization we had seen in traveling 2,000 miles. The little cabin, without door or window, looked homelike, indeed. Here several families, whose teams had become exhausted, were going to abandon their wagons and were making canoes to make the rest of the journey by water.
Recollection of 1846
...we left our cattle on Eugene Skinner’s donation land claim, where the city of Eugene is now located. Our oxen were so weak we had to leave them there, packing in what goods we could carry. As well as the women and children, on our mules and going on to Luckiamute…. My brother Jim, better know in later years as Judge Collins, with a man named Turnidge, stayed that winter in Eugene Skinner’s unfinished cabin to look after their cattle.
Frank M. Collins
Recollections of 1846
Location. 44° 3.642′ N, 123° 5.843′ W. Marker is in Eugene, Oregon, in Lane County. Marker is on Cheshire Ave, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Eugene OR 97401, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Eugene Skinner Settled Here in 1846 (here, next to this marker); The Applegate Trail (a few steps from this marker); Eugene Skinner (approx. 0.2 miles away); Site of First Cabin in Eugene (approx. 0.2 miles away); Shelton – McMurphey House (approx. 0.4 miles away); A.W. and Amanda Patterson Home (approx. 1.2 miles away); Patterson Home Site / Animal House (approx. 1.2 miles away); The Collier House (approx. 1½ miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Eugene.
More about this marker. These interpretive displays are two of four located in front of the Eugene Skinner replica cabin within Skinner Butte Park.
Categories. • Notable Buildings • Notable Places • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on April 25, 2018. This page originally submitted on April 24, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. This page has been viewed 57 times since then. Last updated on April 25, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on April 24, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 4. submitted on April 25, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. 5, 6, 7. submitted on April 24, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.