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Jason S. Elder U.S. Forest Service Diary, 1908-1909
- Elder, Jason S.
- Jason S. Elder U.S. Forest Service Diary
- 1908-1909 (inclusive)19081909
- 0.02 cubic feet, (1 box)
- Collection Number
- MSS Elder
- This diary logs the daily activities of United States Forest Service Ranger Jason S. Elder between December 1, 1908 and April 30, 1909. Elder served as the District Ranger for the Fremont National Forest's Paisley District, located in south central Oregon. His diary documents day-to-day work including creating maps, overseeing forest land use, managing improvement projects, and interacting with community members.
Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Research Center
Special Collections and Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
- Access Restrictions
This collection is open for research.
Biographical NoteReturn to Top
Jason S. Elder was born near Shedd, Oregon on March 17, 1871. In April 1907, he was appointed Forest Guard for the Paisley Ranger District. In 1908, Elder was promoted to Deputy Forest Ranger, a position he held until 1920. He died in Portland, Oregon on January 4, 1936. Elder Creek and the Elder Ranger Station, located in the Paisley Ranger District, were named after him.
The Fremont National Forest was officially established on July 1, 1908 on the site of the Goose Lake/Fremont National Forest Reserve. Located in south central Oregon, the forest extended into both Klamath and Lake counties, covered more than one million acres, and included five ranger districts: Warner, Dog Lake, Bly, Paisley, and Silver Lake. In 2002, the Fremont National Forest merged with the Winema National Forest to form the 2.3 million acre Fremont-Winema National Forest.
Content DescriptionReturn to Top
The Jason S. Elder U.S. Forest Service Diary is comprised of handwritten day-by-day accounts of Elder's work as the United States Forest Service (USFS) District Ranger for the Paisley District, a section of the Fremont National Forest in south central Oregon. The diary includes daily entries dating from December 1, 1908 to April 30, 1909. While often brief, they include descriptions of his activities, document his extensive interactions with USFS personnel and Paisley-area community members, and record weather conditions.
During the winter months, Elder's activities included generating and tracing maps of his district, overseeing and documenting timber sales, and managing land use permits. His entries also document travel to local communities and ranger stations, including an extended trip to the Silver Lake Ranger Station in February and March 1909, during which time he worked on the creation of a forest atlas.
In the early spring, Elder oversaw the beginning construction of a wagon road between the towns of Paisley and Bly, Oregon, conducted a homestead inspection, and performed maintenance on the Paisley Ranger District boundary. He also scouted land for a reservoir to be constructed in the Chewaucan Valley by the Portland Irrigation Company. Many of Elder's entries during the spring of 1909 address issues of livestock (cattle and horses) grazing on USFS land. During this time, Elder managed grazing permits, scouted forest land for trespassing livestock, served notices of trespass, and conducted herd counts. Elder also recorded numerous interactions with local ranchers, both positive and negative.
Of note, the first page of the diary indicates that the entries span the years 1909-1910, though dates on individual entries indicate a 1908-1909 span. It is believed that the 1908-1909 range is correct.
Use of the CollectionReturn to Top
Jason S. Elder U.S. Forest Service Diary (MSS Elder), Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.
Administrative InformationReturn to Top
This diary was acquired in 2007 by the Oregon State University Archives as part of the Gerald W. Williams Collection (MSS WilliamsG). It now resides independently in the Oregon State University Libraries Special Collections and Archives Research Center.
The Jason S. Elder U.S. Forest Service Diary was discovered in the attic of the decommissioned Paisley Ranger Station in December 1970. The diary was eventually acquired by U.S. Forest Service historian Gerald W. Williams and transferred to the Oregon State University Archives as part of the Gerald W. Williams Collection. It now resides independently in the Oregon State University Libraries Special Collections and Archives Research Center.
This diary was accessioned as part of the Gerald W. Williams Collection (MSS WilliamsG). It has since been separated from that collection and processed independently.
Other materials documenting the history and work of the United States Forest Service include the United States Forest Service Video Workshop Videotapes (FV 264), Forest Service Equipment Development Center Photograph Album (P 311), Gerald W. Williams Papers (MSS Williams), C. C. Hall Photograph Album (P 301), and the George W. Peavy Papers (MSS Peavy).
Maps of the Fremont National Forest can be found in the Forest Type Maps of Oregon (MAPS ForestType), National Forests in Oregon Maps (MAPS USFS), Gerald W. Williams Map Collection (MAPS WilliamsG), and the Lehi F. Hintze Geological Reconnaissance Maps of Oregon (MAPS Hintze). Photographs from the Fremont National Forest are located in the Edwin Russell Jackman Photographic Collection (P 089).
For additional information about Jason S. Elder and the U.S. Forest Service's operations in the Fremont National Forest, see the History of the Fremont National Forest published by Melva M. Bach in 1981, available via ScholarsArchive@OSU.
Names and SubjectsReturn to Top
- Public lands--United States--Management.
- United States. Forest Service.
- Fremont National Forest (Or.)
- Paisley (Or.)
Form or Genre Terms