Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Benton County Circa 1920

The newest Benton County Historical Museum's exhibition, Circa 1920-- Roaring into the Modern Age, is now open in the downstairs gallery.  You'll learn about events from the period 1914 to 1925 which affected local residents.  You'll also see changes in fashion, music, art, and household operation.

What was Benton County like at the start of this period?  According to the 1910 U. S. Census, Benton County had 10,663 residents, most of whom (93%) were native-born whites. Men (5729) outnumbered women (4934).  Here's a photographic tour of the county in the early 1900s.

Corvallis was the largest city, with 4,552 residents, or 43% of the county's population. The photo looks north along 2nd Street. 
Corvallis, Oregon
Philomath, with 505 residents, was the second largest incorporated city. In 1914, as now, Marys Peak dominated the skyline to the west. 
Philomath and Marys Peak, Benton County, Oregon
Although Monroe did not incorporate until 1914, it had a number of houses and the Monroe Roller Mill whose water tower appears in the back of this 1912 photograph looking towards the Long Tom River.
Monroe, Oregon
A number of other small groupings of homes scattered across the county.  Some were in King's Valley.
Kings Valley, Oregon
In spite of being home to 2 colleges, Oregon Agricultural College (now Oregon State University) and Philomath College, Benton County was largely agricultural.  This 1915 photo shows the McClelland Farm just west of Philomath. 
Come to the museum to see some additional photographs of Benton County's cities. I will also feature other period photographs in future posts. 

By Martha Fraundorf, Volunteer for Benton County Historical Society, Philomath, Oregon


  1. new pics I have not seen, YAAY!!! The Flynn house and barn. Those houses with Marys Peak in the background. Awesome. Thank you.

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