Zorn-Macpherson Bill Collection, 1926-1932
Zorn, Henry, 1880-1971
Macpherson, Hector Carswell, 1875-1970
1926-1932 (inclusive), 1932 (bulk)
0.5 cubic foot
The Zorn-Macpherson Bill Collection consists predominantly of newspaper clippings, pamphlets, and broadsides pertaining to the Zorn-Macpherson School Moving Bill. The clippings are from newspapers throughout Oregon and include articles, editorials, and advertisements. The pamphlets and broadsides include items both in favor of and against the bill. The Collection also includes reports and statistics compiled by Oregon Agricultural College staff, information about the normal schools in Oregon, materials pertaining to higher education consolidation in other states, reports prepared for the Survey Commission, and correspondence.
In addition to information about this measure, the Collection includes materials pertaining to the re-organization of higher education in Oregon in the late 1920s through early 1930s, establishment of the Oregon State System of Higher Education, and appointment of William J. Kerr as Chancellor in 1932.
The Zorn-Macpherson School Moving Bill (official title: Bill Moving University, Normal and Law Schools. Establishing Junior Colleges.) was an initiative petition on the November 1932 general election ballot. The bill provided for the consolidation of the University of Oregon and Oregon State College at the Corvallis campus to form the Oregon State University; moving of the normal schools from Monmouth, Ashland, and LaGrande to the campus in Eugene; moving the law school from Eugene to Salem; closing of the normal school at Monmouth; and creation of junior colleges at Ashland and LaGrande. The Zorn-Macpherson initiative petition campaign was the largest and most expensive in Oregon educational history up to that time. The bill was resoundingly defeated by a vote of more than 6 to 1.
Henry Zorn was a farmer near Champoeg in Marion County and President of the Marion County Taxpayers Equalization League, one of the sponsors of the initiative petition.
Hector Macpherson was a faculty member in economics and sociology at Oregon Agricultural College from 1911 until 1926, when he resigned his faculty position to offer his services to the movement for reorganization of higher education in Oregon. He was elected to the State Legislature in 1927, 1929, and 1939.
The Zorn-Macpherson Petition, 1932: A Study of the Development of Higher Education in Oregon by J. David Cunningham (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Oregon) includes a detailed analysis of this initiative petition as well as biographies of Zorn and Macpherson.
The President's Office Records (RG 13), Board of Regents Records (RG 8), and the E.T. Reed Papers include materials pertaining to the reorganization of Oregon higher education in the late 1920s and early 1930s.
Several other repositories in Oregon include materials pertaining to this initiative. The Oregon Historical Society holdings include the Hector Macpherson Papers. The University of Oregon Special Collections and University Archives include other papers of Macpherson as well as the Zorn-Macpherson Initiative Petition Papers.
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