Sherman A. Washburn photographs, 1962  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Washburn, Sherman A., b. 1917
Sherman A. Washburn photographs
1962 (inclusive)
0.32 cubic feet, (31 photographs in 2 folders)
Collection Number
Org. Lot 327
This collection contains original photographs taken by Sherman A. Washburn, a documentary producer who also worked for the Oregon State Board of Health and who edited the Oregon Health Bulletin, documenting the the living and working conditions of migrant laborers in Washington, Polk, and Jefferson counties in Oregon in 1962.
Oregon Historical Society, Davies Family Research Library
Davies Family Research Library
Oregon Historical Society
1200 SW Park Avenue
Portland, OR
Telephone: 503-306-5240
Fax: 503-219-2040
Access Restrictions

The collection is open to the public.

Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Sherman A. Washburn (b. 1917), a native of California, graduated from Humboldt State College (now Humboldt University) in Arcata, Calif.) and went into radio broadcasting at Eureka, Calif., before moving to Portland, Oregon, in 1941 to work for stations KGW and KGX. He moved into television broadcasting as the entire news department at Channel 12 when it went on the air in March 1955. Washburn joined Channel 6 in 1961 as a documentary producer, including his first about air pollution, “How Now Brown Cloud.” In 1961, he also went to work for the Oregon State Board of Health and remained on the job until he retired in 1979. His work included publication of the Oregon Health Bulletin, which involved both reporting and photography. Washburn has been active in community affairs, chairing the Oak Grove District 2 Sanitation District board and serving on the Oregon City School Board.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

In 1962, Sherman Washburn accompanied Don Parker of the Occupational Health Section of the Oregon State Board of Health to several western Oregon migrant labor camps to document those where conditions were acceptable and those where conditions were poor. His Spanish language capability allowed him to communicate with the migrant laborers. The resulting article “We Are People,” illustrated with his photographs, appeared in the Oregon Health Bulletin for August 1962 (vol. 40, no. 8). Washburn’s empathy for the migrant workers led him to make their plight the focus of a project for a social science course he took at Portland State University in 1962. He assembled the original photographs, a typescript report, and a copy of the bulletin article into an oversize album, titled “Sanitation in Migrant Labor Camps." Included in the album are images and text on the Tankersley and Van Domelin farms, Washington County, Or.; the Horst Ranch, Polk County, Or.; and the Culver Labor Camp, Jefferson County near Madras Or.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

The Oregon Historical Society is the owner of the materials in the Research Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the Research Library before any reproduction use. The Society does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.

Preferred Citation

Sherman A. Washburn hotographs, Org. Lot 327, Oregon Historical Society Research Library

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

Container(s) Description Dates
Over B/1 Album Pages 1-15
Includes typescript report, copy of Oregon Health Bulletin, and photographs with captions and further text: Tankersley Farm and Van Domelin Farm, both in Washington County, Or.
Over B/2 Album Pages 16-27
Includes photographs with captions and further text: Horst Ranch (or Green Villa Farms), Polk County near Independence, Or., and Culver Labor Camp near Madras, Or.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Agriculture--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Farms--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Mexican American migrant agricultural laborers--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Migrant agricultural laborers--Housing--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Migrant agricultural laborers--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Migrant labor--Oregon--Photographs.
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Photographic prints.