Merlin S. Eltzroth Papers, 1971-2005

Overview of the Collection

Eltzroth, Merlin S.
Merlin S. Eltzroth Papers
1971-2005 (inclusive)
1983-2005 (bulk)
0.4 cubic foot, (1 box)
Collection Number
MSS Eltzroth
The Merlin S. Eltzroth Papers consist of field notes compiled by Eltzroth about first and second recorded sightings of birds that are rarely seen in Oregon and a personal history, Here, There and Eltzwhere, written by Eltzroth. Eltzroth earned a BS degree in Wildlife Science from Oregon State University in 1974.
Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Research Center
Special Collections and Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
Telephone: 5417372075
Fax: 5417378674
Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Merlin S. Eltzroth moved to Corvallis in 1971 and earned a BS degree in Wildlife Science from Oregon State University in 1974. He specialized in non-game bird biology and was a volunteer in wild bird rehabilitation and protection, especially of hawks, owls, and other birds of prey. In 1985, he was instrumental in the passage of Oregon laws to protect all native non-game bird species and received honors from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for his work. In early 2005, he received the first Homer Campbell Award for conservation and the environment fromm the Audubon Society of Corvallis. He served as president of the Audubon Society of Corvallis and founded the Oregon Field Ornithologists and published articles and booklets about birds of Oregon.

Eltzroth retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1971 after serving in both World War II and the Vietnam War. He graduated from Ohio University in 1947. Merlin S. and Elsie K. Eltzroth were married in June 1943. Merlin was born in Philadelphia in 1922, grew up in Ohio, and died in Corvallis on October 7, 2005.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Merlin S. Eltzroth Papers consist of field notes about birds rarely seen in Oregon and an autobiography written by Eltzroth in 2005.

The field notes document the first and second recorded sightings in Oregon of birds that are rarely seen in the state. They are based on Eltzroth's personal observations, published sources, and accounts from other birders. The notes include details on the date and location of the sighting and the observer. Information from these records was developed into a database by the Oregon Department of Fisheries and Wildife, that was transferred to the Oregon Natural Heritage Program.

Eltzroth's autobiography, Here, There, and Eltzwhere, presents a chronological personal history of Eltzroth's family, education, military service, and life in Corvallis, Oregon. He describes his involvement with the birding community in Corvallis; his experiences as an older student at Oregon State University (OSU) in the 1970s; friendships with OSU faculty; participation in OSU classes as a guest lecturer; highlights of OSU athletics; and bird-related research that he conducted in collaboration with OSU researchers.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

Merlin S. Eltzroth Papers, Oregon State University Archives, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Acquisition Information

Materials were donated to the Archives in 2008 and 2009.

Related Materials

The Bluebird Habitat Research Records document the Bluebird Trail project of the Audubon Society in Corvallis which was led by Elsie Eltzroth. Additional information about academic and research programs in fisheries and wildlife at Oregon State University are available in the Fisheries and Wildlife Department Records (RG 190) as well as the Spotted Owl Management, Policy, and Research Collection.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Adult college students--Oregon--Corvallis.
  • Bird watching--Oregon.
  • Birds--Conservation--Oregon.

Personal Names

  • Eltzroth, Elsie K.

Corporate Names

  • Oregon State University--Students.
  • Oregon State University. Dept. of Fisheries and Wildlife.

Family Names

  • Eltzroth family.

Geographical Names

  • Corvallis (Or.)