Wayne Morse Integrity in Politics Award Winners Announced
The Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation is pleased to announce the co-recipients of the Wayne Morse Integrity in Politics Award for 2018. The co-recipients are Oregon’s U.S. Senator Ron Wyden and U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley.
Honoring the legacy of U.S. Senator Wayne Morse (1944-1968), whose family home in Eugene, Edgewood Farm, has become a city park and historical landmark, this award recognizes elected officials who demonstrate the highest level of integrity, and a willingness to take principled action on behalf of the public good, even at considerable political cost.
“At a perilous moment in our national project, Oregon is privileged to have you in the United States Senate,” wrote WMHPC board president, Johnny Earl, to this year’s award winners. “You strive to find legislative solutions beyond narrow partisan interests and carry forward Oregon’s independent spirit…Your long records of public service are combined with early advocacy for working families and senior citizens in our state.”
Details for an Award Presentation and Reception for the Senators will be announced at a later date.
2018 Open House and New Exhibits
Edgewood Farm was at its best for the Annual Historic Preservation Open House on May 20. The green manicured grounds of the Morse family home and the newly mown adjacent former horse and Devon cattle pastures welcomed guests for house tours, our traditional ice cream social, and music by Not Applikable and the Invisible Arts Project.
In the exhibit room new displays about Wayne Morse debuted. Wayne Morse Fierce Independent focuses on cartoons from the Senator’s political cartoon collection and discusses his independence, his commitment to put principle above politics and his switching parties. Making Democracy Work: Wayne Morse, the NAACP and Civil Rights explores the Senator’s long relationship with the NAACP and his efforts to bring the rights and privileges of the Constitution to the Black citizens of our nation. Featured in the latter are his 1947 remarks to the NAACP at the Lincoln Memorial, where President Truman gave the first address by a U.S. President to the NAACP, and his Report to Oregon after he participated in the 1963 March on Washington and sat on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to hear Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and other civil rights leaders. These exhibits will remain on view for the next year.
A temporary display appeared upstairs on the Morse family dining table about the Morse family’s love of horses and the Senator’s award winning favorite horse, Spice of Life. Featured was one of the Senator’s saddles which recently came to the WMHPC from Amy Morse Bilich, his youngest daughter, and her family.
A very special thanks to Prince Puckler’s for providing the afternoon’s ice cream.
Some features of the 2018 Morse Open House: display of Morse’s saddle and historical photos family horses and performance by Rati Dangarembwa the the musical group Not Applkable.
WMHPC Awards Seventh Legacy Scholarship
WMHPC was pleased to award our 2017 Morse Legacy Scholarship to Sunshine Navarro, who grew up in rural Junction City with her parents and grandparents. She graduated from Sheldon High School where she established and led the Green Club. She currently attends Lane Community College, majoring in Psychology.
An activist, Sunshine worked with 350 Action and with Friends of Trees. She has picked up garbage in city parks and volunteered at the Circle of Children, an outdoor education camp at Triangle Lake. She is now in training with Cahoots (Crisis Assistance Helping Out on the Streets). Besides her studies and activities, she works at a local grocery market.
Sunshine is an amazing young woman who has faced the challenges of growing up in poverty and sometimes being homeless. Her personal experience has influenced her to work hard and succeed. She is determined to contribute positively in society. She and her mother, Melissa Flores, attended our October Board meeting. Sunshine’s presentation inspired us. We have confidence she will continue to be a beacon for others to follow.
Julie Mertes and Tony Vezina, former Legacy Scholarship recipients, traveled down from Portland for the scholarship announcement. They brought the Board up to date on their activities and shared how the scholarship impacted their lives.
WMHPC has been busy this year! Visit our events page to see what we’ve been doing.
WAYNE LYMAN MORSE
Wayne Lyman Morse is celebrated for his legacies of independent judgment and integrity throughout his public service as a renowned federal labor arbitrator and four-term United States Senator from Oregon. He led the University of Oregon’s School of Law for 14 years, where he was the nation’s youngest law school dean at the time of his appointment…
…The causes that Wayne Morse spoke about so eloquently continue to dominate our national debate. His words and vision provide ongoing inspiration for all who seek to carry on his commitment to public service, integrity, world peace and the rule of law.
Read more about Morse in our biography by clicking on this PDF link (22 pages/325k).
WAYNE MORSE LEGACY SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM
The Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation established the Wayne Morse Legacy Scholarship in 2011 to recognize and help support an Oregon student who seeks access to higher education and has demonstrated or may be inspired by the Senator’s legacies of public service, integrity, commitment to principle and independence. Seven outstanding students have been selected thus far – attending Portland State, Oregon State, the University of Oregon and Lane and Portland Community Colleges. Read more about the Legacy Scholarship program and scholarship recipients on our scholarship page.
We’re working to secure long-range funding for the Legacy Scholarship. Donors can help in two tax deductible ways: (1) Making a direct contribution for the scholarship. Contributions can be sent to Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation, 595 Crest Drive, Eugene, Oregon 97405, ATTN: Legacy Scholarship. (2) Purchasing a granite paver at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza at the Lane County Courthouse in Eugene. A 4-inch by 8-inch brick-sized engraved paver costs $250; a 4-inch by 15-inch paver costs $500; a 15-inch by 13-inch paver costs $750 and a 23-inch by 15-inch paver costs $1000. All proceeds but the engraving costs go to the Legacy Scholarship fund. Limited quantities of each size are available. For further details about pavers, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (541) 682-5380.
FINDING WAYNE MORSE IN EUGENE
Wayne Morse Family Farm
Edgewood Farm on Crest Drive was the home of Wayne Morse and his family from 1936 to 1974. Formerly a working cattle and horse farm, it is currently a 26-acre multi-use City of Eugene Park, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The house and farm are also supported, in interpretive and preservation efforts, by the Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation. For history about the Farm and the Morse family home check our National Register page. Information about the Park including rentals of the picnic shelter and the house which are administered by the City of Eugene is available on our Park page.
Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza
The Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza honors an Oregonian whose career epitomized, for supporters and opponents alike, political integrity and courage and provides a location for thoughtful civic discourse. Amid the pavers and plaques highlighting Wayne Morse’s contemporaries and events in his lifetime, one can gain a wealth of wisdom in the quotations as well as lessons in 20th Century American history and politics. Plan a visit to the Plaza at the Lane County Courthouse, East 8th Avenue and Oak Street, Eugene. To read more about the Plaza and its history, click here.
On the Trail of the Tiger
Discover additional information on the Park and Plaza as well as other Wayne Morse sites in Eugene by downloading our tour brochure, “On the Trail of the Tiger,” PDF (2 legal size 8.5×14 pages/550k). Each site offers opportunities to learn about a remarkable Oregonian and reflect on his legacies.