The Morse Horses – MUSE display at the Eugene Public Library

MUSE has again offered its members an opportunity to decorate a display case in the youth and children’s room of the Eugene Public Library. The exhibit runs from July 15th to August 30th. This exhibit has three dolls feeding and grooming their horses. As was true in real life, the blonde doll represents Nancy, the redhead is Judith, and, of course, the brunette is Amy. This year’s exhibit brings WMHPC some additional fun, child-friendly miniatures for future displays at the Farm. One of our favorite photos is of a teenage Nancy confiding in a friend while her head is resting on her horse. It is a photograph that says it all – that family loved and cared for their horses.

“Much of the girls’ time growing up on the farm was spent helping their parents care for and groom the horses and the ponies. The whole family knew how to ride horses well enough to win show and racing competitions at the County and State Fairs. Summer time was grand fun for the Morse Clan. They rode their horses all over the South Eugene Hills when much of the land was still pastures, meadows and woods. The farm provided lots of quiet and serene corners to have uninterrupted reading time – plenty of time to read about horses.

“Christmas time brought the whole family together before the hearth fire. They would read Christmas stories like The Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Then they would get all bundled up and go for horse carriage rides around the neighborhood.

“Life on the farm was a joy for Nancy, Judy and Amy year ‘round. They felt and expressed an abundance of gratitude for their beautiful, graceful and beloved Morse Horses.”


OpenHouse2015_MLee  OpenHouse2015_display

(L-R) Morse’s granddaughter, Melanie Lee (left),  speaks with a visitor at the Open House. Morse horse artifacts display at the 2015 Open House.

Horses, Clues and Ice Cream: Open House 2015

The Wayne Morse Family Farm’s May 17 celebration of Historic Preservation Month brought new looks and experiences: Indoors were enhanced house tours and exhibits with a special focus on the Morse family horses. Family photos and horse records donated by WMHPC Board Member and eldest Morse grandchild Melanie Lee offered a special glimpse of the family’s love of horses and competition at horse shows. Visitors to the study had their first look at Wayne Morse’s Senate Floor chair, a recent gift from eldest Morse grandson Peter Eaton. Younger guests and their families had a new opportunity to learn about the Morse family and their beloved farm through a history clues hunt around the yard and family home.

After tours and the clues hunt, visitors relaxed on the front lawn enjoying the mild afternoon weather. They experienced a typical visit with the Morse family, with an ice cream social and plenty of discussion about horses, history and politics!

Thanks to all who joined us for a wonderful afternoon. We’re especially grateful to Prince Puckler’s Ice Cream and to Costco for their assistance with the ice cream social.



Morse’s Senate chair has been returned to the Senator’s former home in Eugene.

 The Chair

The Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation recently received Senator Morse’s chair that he used on the Senate floor from 1945 to 1968. We are very grateful to Peter Eaton for this generous gift. Peter is the eldest grandson of Wayne Morse and serves on the advisory board at The Wayne Morse School of Law and Politics at the University of Oregon. Our board also greatly appreciates his advice in our own mission of promoting and preserving the legacy and history of Senator Morse.

Each senator picks the chair they want to use when they begin their term and it is in amazingly good condition considering his years on the senate floor. Staffers were not allowed to sit in the senators’ chairs on the floor. The grandchildren, however, took great delight in being allowed to play on them. Peter Eaton was the grandchild who took the most pleasure in this so it was not by accident that he had the chair for many years.

The leather has some cracks which are easily repaired. This handsome piece now sits behind the original desk in the study at the Wayne Morse Family Farm. It is one of the most important pieces of his history ever to be procured by our board. KEZI in Eugene aired a news story and interview with Melanie Lee, eldest grandchild of Senator Morse, on April 29. We were very proud to display the chair for the first time at our May 2015 Open House.


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 annually recognize and help support an Oregon student who has demonstrated or may be inspired by the Senator’s legacy of public service, integrity, strong principles and independence. Approximately 1,000 students each year have applied for the scholarship since its inception. We’re working to build an endowment for this $1,000 scholarship, ensuring its availability in coming years to deserving Oregon students.

Donors can help in two tax deductible ways: (1) Making a direct contribution for the Legacy Scholarship. (2) Purchasing a granite paver at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza at the Lane County Courthouse in Eugene. A 4 by 8 inch brick-sized inscribed paver costs $165; a large 12 by 12 inch inscribed paver $750. Limited quantities are available.

Non-paver contributions can be sent to Wayne Morse Historical Park Corporation, 595 Crest Drive, Eugene, Oregon 97405, ATTN: Legacy Scholarship. For further details about pavers, contact us at (541) 682-5380.

Read more about the program on our scholarship page.

Finding Wayne Morse in Eugene

Use our guide, “On the Trail of the Tiger,” to discover Wayne Morse sites in Eugene by downloading this PDF (2 legal size 8.5×14 pages/550k). All offer opportunities to learn about a remarkable Oregonian and to reflect on his legacies.

Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza

Plan a visit to The Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza at the Lane County Courthouse at East 8th Avenue and Oak Street in Eugene.  It honors Senator Morse, whose career epitomized for supporters and opponents alike political integrity and courage, and provides a location for thoughtful civic discourse. There amid the pavers and plaques highlighting Morse contemporaries and events in his lifetime one also can gain a wealth of wisdom in the quotations and lessons in 20th Century American history and politics.

To read more about the Plaza and its history, click here.