Oregon State University Press

For fifty years, Oregon State University Press has been publishing exceptional books about the Pacific Northwest—its people and landscapes, its flora and fauna, its history and cultural heritage. The Press has played a vital role in the region’s literary life, providing readers with a better understanding of what it means to be an Oregonian. Today, Oregon State University Press publishes distinguished books in several academic areas from environmental history and natural resource management to indigenous studies.

Showing 91-120 of 389 items.

Hiking from Portland to the Coast

An Interpretive Guide to 30 Trails

Oregon State University Press

A guidebook for hikers, bikers, and equestrians, Hiking from Portland to the Coast explores the many trails and logging roads that crisscross the northern portion of Oregon’s Coast Range. Designed to showcase convenient “looped” routes, it also describes complete throughways connecting Portland to the coastal communities of Seaside and Tillamook. Each of the 30 trails described includes a backstory to help users appreciate the history and significance of the places through which they are traveling.

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Through a Green Lens

Fifty Years of Writing for Nature

Oregon State University Press

Robert Michael Pyle is the author of twenty books and hundreds of essays, stories, papers, and poems, but it is the occasional prose--the deeply personal essays that explored and indulged his immediate fascinations--that make up this selection of never-before-collected testimonies. Beginning with a 1965 cri de coeur written on mountain motel stationery, Through a Green Lens  ranges across broad territory of topic, vehicle, geography, populace, and politics, concluding with powerful forewords for two 2015 books. Pyle's half-century long view, acute and uncommonly attuned to the physical world, gives readers a remarkable window on the natural setting of our life and times.

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A Guide to Freshwater Fishes of Oregon

Oregon State University Press

This guide facilitates the identification of Oregon freshwater fishes with annotated keys and detailed color photographs and illustrations. It will be useful to professional biologists, sportsmen and anglers, and anyone curious about the freshwater fishes of Oregon.

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Where the Wind Dreams of Staying

Searching for Purpose and Place in the West

Oregon State University Press

Where the Wind Dreams of Staying is a personal memoir told through interwoven essays. Dieterle details his experiences in southeastern Washington, Utah, Nevada, Iowa, California, and Airzona. His restless search for purpose, identity, and place moves through cycles of success and failure, love and loss. He captures the emotional storms of a boy, and then a man, on a restless search for meaning in a place, or for a place with meaning.

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The Jewish Oregon Story, 1950-2010

Oregon State University Press

The Jewish Oregon Story traces the history of diverse Jewish Oregonians and their communities during a period of dramatic change. Drawing on archival sources, including a collection of over five hundred oral histories, the book explores how Jewish Oregonians both contributed to and were shaped by the “Oregon Story,” a political shift that fueled Oregon’s—and particularly Portland’s—emerging reputation for progressivism and sustainability.

Published in Cooperation with the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education

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Rivers of Oregon

Oregon State University Press


Rivers of Oregon captures the beauty and the intrinsic qualities of the state’s irresistible riverscapes like no other book has done. From the underwater view and from the refuge of riparian forests, from the seat of a canoe or raft and from distant mountain summits, readers will gain new perspectives on the extraordinary features that provide us with water, with life, and with scenes whose loss would leave us deeply impoverished.

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A Naturalist's Guide to the Hidden World of Pacific Northwest Dunes

Oregon State University Press

The Pacific dunes provide a unique habitat for plants, animals, and insects, and anyone who walks along the coast will want to have this illustrated reference handy. While written for the educated public, comprehensive data for biologists studying dune ecology are also included. This guide to exploring the dunes is detailed enough to be used by biologists and ecologists, accessible enough to serve as a field guide to hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. A Naturalist’s Guide to the Pacific Dunes belongs on every beach house bookshelf from California to Canada.

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A Week in Yellowstone's Thorofare

A Journey Through the Remotest Place

Oregon State University Press

The remotest place in the country, outside of Alaska, is a region in Yellowstone National Park ironically named the Thorofare, for its historic role as a route traversed by fur trappers. A Week in Yellowstone’s Thorofare is a history and celebration of this wild place, set within a week-long expedition that the author took with three friends in 2014.

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Ricky's Atlas

Mapping a Land on Fire

Oregon State University Press

On a visit to his uncle’s ranch in eastern Oregon, Ricky Zamora brings his curiosity and love of map-making to the arid landscapes east of the Cascades Mountains.  He arrives during a wild thunderstorm, and watches his family and their neighbors scramble to deal with a wildfire that grew from a spark of lightning. Joined by his friend Ellie, he sees how plants, animals, and people adjust to life with wildfires.  Designed for upper elementary kids, this sequel to the bestselling Ellie’s Log is based on actual historical, physical and ecological data about the region.

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Boundary Layer

Exploring the Genius Between Worlds

Oregon State University Press

In atmospheric science, a boundary layer is where the ground comes into contact with the air. In the Pacific Northwest, this boundary layer teems with lichens, mosses, ferns, fungi, and diminutive plants. It’s a universe in miniature, an unexplored territory that author Kem Luther calls the stegnon, the terrestrial equivalent of oceanic plankton. In Boundary Layer, Luther takes a voyage of discovery through the stegnon, exploring the life forms that thrive there and introducing readers to the scientists who study them.

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Holy Moli

Albatross and Other Ancestors

Oregon State University Press

Albatross live long. They spend the majority of their years airborne, gliding across vast oceans. In nesting season, they rack up inconceivable mileage to feed their chicks waiting on the islands of the Hawaiian archipelago. When Hob Osterlund happened upon a few courting albatross in Kauai, in 1979, she embarked on a personal journey that introduced her to the Hawaiian concept of ?aumakua— spiritual ancestors who occupy the physical forms of animals. This is the story of how the albatross – or Moli - guided Hob on her journey, back to the origin of a bargain she struck as a child.

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Ethnobotany of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians

Oregon State University Press

Very little has been published until now on the ethnobotany of western Oregon indigenous peoples.  Ethnobotany of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians documents the use of plants by these closely-related coastal tribes, covering a geographical area that extends roughly from Cape Perpetua on the central coast, south to the Coquille River, and from the Coast Range west to the Pacific shore, with a focus on native plants and their traditional uses.

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Reporting the Oregon Story

How Activists and Visionaries Transformed a State

Oregon State University Press

Oregon entered a new era in 1964 with the election of Tom McCall as Secretary of State and Bob Straub as State Treasurer.  Their political rivalry formed the backdrop for two of Oregon’s most transformative decades, as they successively fought for, lost, and won the governorship. Veteran Oregon journalist Floyd McKay had a front-row seat. As a political reporter for The Oregon Statesman in Salem, and then as news analyst for KGW-TV in Portland, McKay was known for asking tough questions and pulling no punches. His reporting and commentaries ranged from analysis of the “Tom and Bob” rivalry, to the Vietnam War’s impact on Senators Wayne Morse and Mark Hatfield and the emergence of a new generation of Portland activists in the 1970s. Covering the period from 1964 to 1986, McKay remembers the action, the players and the consequences, in this compelling and personal account.

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Living Off the Pacific Ocean Floor

Stories of a Commercial Fisherman

Oregon State University Press

In this authentic account of a seafaring life, Captain George Moskovita offers a highly personal and often humorous look at the career of a commercial fisherman. With an introduction and textual notes by Carmel Finley, an historian of science, and Mary Hunsicker, an aquatic and fisheries scientist, this book will be invaluable to fishery students and professionals interested in the biology, ecology, and history of oceans and commercial fishing. It will also have broad appeal to readers of Oregon history and maritime adventure, and anyone else who has ever stood at the western edge of the continent and wondered what life was like at sea.

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The Color of Night

Race, Railroaders, and Murder in the Wartime West

Oregon State University Press

The Color of Night will appeal to “true crime” aficionados, and to anyone interested in the history of race and labor relations, working conditions, community priorities, and attitudes toward the death penalty in the first half of the 20th century.

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Wild in the Willamette

Exploring the Mid-Valley's Parks, Trails, and Natural Areas

Oregon State University Press

Located between the population centers of Portland and Eugene, Oregon’s Willamette Valley boasts rich opportunities for outdoor recreation that are too often overlooked. Wild in the Willamette is a guidebook to the natural treasures of the mid-Willamette Valley, extending far beyond the familiar I-5 corridor. Sprinkled with natural history sidebars and infused with essays by notable local authors, it aims to connect residents and visitors with the best hiking, biking, and paddling opportunities the mid-Valley offers.

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Outsiders in a Promised Land

Religious Activists in Pacific Northwest History

Oregon State University Press

Outsiders in a Promised Land explores the role that religious activists have played in shaping the culture of the Pacific Northwest, particularly in Washington and Oregon, from the middle of the 19th century onward. The first book of its kind, it is destined to be an essential reference for scholars, activists, and religious leaders of all faiths.

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A School for the People

A Photographic History of Oregon State University

Oregon State University Press

A School for the People tells the story of OSU’s nearly 150 years as a land grant institution through more than 500 photographs, maps, documents, and extensive captions. A capsule history includes many of the iconic photographs associated with the university. Other chapters focus on themes such as campus development, the growth of academics, the evolution of research as a major focus of the university, campus life and organizations, and, of course, athletics.

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Numbers and Nerves

Information, Emotion, and Meaning in a World of Data

Oregon State University Press

The essays and interviews in Numbers and Nerves explore the quandary of our cognitive responses to quantitative information, while also offering compelling strategies for overcoming insensitivity to the meaning of such information. With contributions by journalists, literary critics, psychologists, naturalists, activists, and others, this book represents a unique convergence of psychological research, discourse analysis, and visual and narrative communication.

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Embracing a Western Identity

Jewish Oregonians, 1849-1950

Oregon State University Press

In Embracing a Western Identity, Ellen Eisenberg places Jewish history in the larger context of western narratives, challenging the traditional view that the “authentic” North American Jewish experience stems from New York. The westward paths of Jewish Oregonians and their experiences of place shaped the communities, institutions, and identities they created, distinguishing them from other American Jewish communities. Eisenberg traces the Oregon Jewish experience from its pioneer beginnings in the mid-nineteenth century to the highly concentrated Portland communities of the mid-twentieth century.

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Shaping the Public Good

Women Making History in the Pacific Northwest

Oregon State University Press

Drawing on her three decades of research and teaching and based on hundreds of secondary sources, Armitage’s account explores the varied ways in which, beginning in the earliest times and continuing to the present, women of all races and ethnicities have made the history of the Pacific Northwest. An accessible introduction for general readers and scholars alike, Shaping the Public Good restores a missing piece of history by demonstrating the part that women—“the famous, the forgotten, and all the women in between”—have always played in establishing their families and building communities.

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Marie Equi

Radical Politics and Outlaw Passions

Oregon State University Press

Marie Equi explores the fiercely independent life of an extraordinary woman. Born of Italian-Irish parents in 1872, Marie Equi endured childhood labor in a gritty Massachusetts textile mill before fleeing to an Oregon homestead with her first longtime woman companion, who described her as impulsive, earnest, and kind-hearted. These traits, along with courage, stubborn resolve, and a passion for justice, propelled Equi through an unparalleled life journey. 

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Honey in the Horn

Oregon State University Press

Set in Oregon in the early years of the twentieth century, H. L. Davis’s Honey in the Horn chronicles the struggles faced by homesteaders as they attempted to settle down and eke out subsistence from a still-wild land. With sly humor and keenly observed detail, Davis pays homage to the indomitable character of Oregon’s restless people and dramatic landscapes without romanticizing or burnishing the myths.

An essential book for all serious readers of Northwest literature, this classic coming-of-age novel has been called the “Huckleberry Finn of the West.” It is the only Oregon book that has ever won a Pulitzer Prize for fiction. With a new introduction by Richard W. Etulain, this path-breaking work from one of Oregon’s premier authors is once again available for a new generation to enjoy.

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At the Hearth of the Crossed Races

A French-Indian Community in Nineteenth-Century Oregon, 1812-1859

Oregon State University Press

Despite the force of Oregon’s founding mythology, the Willamette Valley was not an empty Eden awaiting settlement by hardy American pioneers. Rather, it was, as Melinda Jetté explores in At the Hearth of the Crossed Races, one of the earliest sites of extensive intercultural contact in the Pacific Northwest. Jetté’s study focuses on the “hearth” of this contact: French Prairie, so named for the French-Indian families who resettled the homeland of the Ahantchuyuk Kalapuyans. This history of French Prairie provides a window into the multi-racial history of the Pacific Northwest and offers an alternative vision of early Oregon in the lives of the biracial French-Indian families whose community challenged notions of white supremacy, racial separation, and social exclusion.

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A Man for All Seasons

Monroe Sweetland and the Liberal Paradox

Oregon State University Press

The life of prominent Oregon political leader Monroe Sweetland spans the spectrum of 20th-century America. Through seven decades, Sweetland experienced the economic collapse of the Great Depression, the unparalleled violence of a nation at war, the divisiveness of Cold War politics, and the cultural and political turmoil of the Vietnam War. Historian William G. Robbins illuminates the wrenching transformation of American political culture in A Man for All Seasons: Monroe Sweetland and the Liberal Paradox. Robbins’ portrait is holistic, exploring Sweetland’s socialist beginnings, inconsistencies in his politics—especially during the Cold War—and his regional and national legacy.

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Building a Better Nest

Living Lightly at Home and in the World

Oregon State University Press

For fifteen years, Evelyn Hess and her husband David lived in a tent and trailer, without electricity or running water, on twenty acres of wild land in the foothills of the Oregon Coast Range. When they decided to build a house – a real house at last – they knew it would have to respect the lessons of simple living that they learned in their camping life. They knew they could not do it alone. Building a Better Nest chronicles their adventures as they begin to construct a house of their own, seeking a model for sustainable living not just in their home, but beyond its walls.

What does it mean to build a better nest? Better for whom? Is it better for the individual or family? The planet? Green building and sustainable design are popular buzzwords, but to Hess, sustainable building is not a simple matter of buying and installing the latest recycled flooring products. It is also about cooperative work: working together in employment, in research, in activism, and in life. Hess is concerned with her local watershed, but also with the widening income gap, disappearing species, and peak resources. She actively works to reduce overconsumption and waste. For Hess, these problems are both philosophical and practical.

As Hess and her husband age, the questions of how to live responsibly arise with greater frequency and urgency. With unfailing wit and humor, she looks for answers in such places as neuroscience, Buddhism, and her ancestral legacy. Building a Better Nest will appeal to anyone with an interest in sustainable building, off-grid living, or alternative communities. The questions it asks about the way we live are earnest and important, from an author whose voice is steeped in wisdom and gratitude.

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Naked in the Woods

My Unexpected Years in a Hippie Commune

Oregon State University Press

In 1970, Margaret Grundstein abandoned her graduate degree at Yale and followed her husband to a commune in the backwoods of Oregon. Together with ten friends and an ever-changing mix of strangers, they began to build their vision of utopia. Naked in the Woods chronicles Grundstein’s shift from reluctant hippie to committed utopian. Grundstein, (whose husband left, seduced by “freer love”) faced tough choices. Could she make it as a single woman in man’s country? Did she still want to? Although she reveled in the shared transcendence of communal life, disillusionment slowly eroded the dream. Brotherhood frayed when food became scarce. Rifts formed over land ownership. Dogma and reality clashed.

Many people, baby boomers and millennials alike, have romantic notions about the 1960s and 70s. Grundstein’s vivid account offers an unflinching, authentic portrait of this iconic and often misreported time in American history. Accompanied by a collection of distinctive photographs she took at the time, Naked in the Woods draws readers into a period of convulsive social change and raises timeless questions: how far must we venture to find the meaning we seek, and is it ever far out enough to escape our ingrained human nature?

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Money Trees

The Douglas Fir and American Forestry, 1900-1944

Oregon State University Press

Money Trees is an interdisciplinary history of the crucial decades that shaped the modern American conception of the value of the forest. It begins with early 20th century environmental changes in the Douglas Fir forests of the Pacific Northwest, which led to increasing divisiveness and controversy among foresters. Brock balances this regional story with a national view of the intellectual and political currents that governed forest management, marshaling archival evidence from industry, government, and scientific sources.
 
An important contribution to environmental scholarship, Money Trees offers a nuanced vision of forestry’s history and its past relationship to both wilderness activism and scientific ecology. With fresh perspectives on well-known environmental figures such as Bob Marshall and Gifford Pinchot, it will add to the conversation among scholars in environmental history, history of science, and the history of the American West. It will be welcomed as a key resource across the spectrum of environmental studies, and by anyone interested in natural resources, land management, the role of science in environmentalism, and the modern wilderness movement.

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Environment and Society in the Japanese Islands

From Prehistory to the Present

Oregon State University Press

Over the long course of Japan’s history, its people profited from their rich natural environment while simultaneously facing significant environmental challenges. Over time, they have altered their natural environment in numerous ways, from landscape modification to industrial pollution. How has the human-nature relationship changed over time in Japan? How does Japan’s environmental history compare with that of other countries, or that of the world as a whole?

Environment and Society in the Japanese Islands attempts to answer these questions through a series of case studies by leading Japanese and Western historians, geographers, archaeologists, and climatologists. These essays, on diverse topics from all periods of Japanese history and prehistory, are unified by their focus on the key concepts of “resilience” and “risk mitigation.” Taken as a whole, they place Japan’s experience in global context and call into question the commonly presumed division between pre-modern and modern environmental history.

Primarily intended for scholars and students in fields related to Japan or environmental history, these accessibly-written essays will be valuable to anyone wishing to learn about the historical roots of today’s environmental issues or the complex relationship between human society and the natural environment.

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