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The speaker is a 58-year-old White man with a college education from Pendleton, Oregon; he was recorded in 1967.



County: Umatilla
State: OR

Commentary:
Located in the foothills of the Blue Mountains, Pendleton serves as the county seat of Umatilla County and has a present-day population of about 16,600. Pendleton???s motto, ???The Real West,??? celebrates its agricultural and ranching history and evokes colorful tales of the gold rush and famous outlaws. The city is home to the Pendleton Woolen Mills and the Pendleton Round-Up, still one of the country???s premiere rodeos. In this segment the speaker provides details supporting the characterization of Pendleton as one of the last Wild West towns.
Inf: Very interesting. We had a few desperados. We had one named Hank Vaughan. Uh, the highlight of his career was when two of the, he and another roughneck, uh, held on to a handkerchief and exchanged gunshots. Hank lived in spite of having four bullet wounds.

FW: They held onto either end o???

Inf: ???of a handkerchief and [FW: That???s pretty close range] exchanged-, and, uh, he lived in spite of four gunshot wounds. Um, his desperado actions was explained later by the fact that he was a narcotics addict.

FW: In 1900 [Inf: In 1900], in those???

Inf: In 1900, why, uh, narcotics could be bought over the counter.

FW: Uh-huh. Mm-hmm.

Inf: And, uh, we had, uh, just a few addicts. We had lots of Chinese here at the, uh, at that time.

FW: The Chinese population has really dwindled since then. Inf: Oh, it, uh, yes. They came with the advent of the railroad, principally, and there was, there must???ve been two or three hundred of them at one time [FW: Mm-hmm]. And very interesting people. Uh, I found ???em interesting because some fifty years ago, or fifty-five years ago, an elderly man named Vincent was mayor of the town. And he helped in the interest of the Chinese, uh, who sometimes didn???t understand local ordinances or laws. And he took care of their interests. And for more than fifty years after that, the younger Chinese after the old ones were all dead, were instructed that, uh, their duties, each year for fifty years, he was delivered a dinner for six on his birthday [FW: Hmm]. He had presents during the year, about every other month [FW: Uh-huh]. After all the old men are dead, and even the very young ones are here, but they maintained that continually [FW: Mm-hmm]. Isn???t that interesting?

FW: That was very nice, yeah.

Inf: Well, interesting people.

FW: I notice there are a lot of other nationalities here. Yeah?

Inf: Not too many. We have a, a lot of Indians of course, and they live in the reservation. These are fairly well-to-do Indians because they own wheat lands, which they lease to farmers on a share basis.

FW: Mm-hmm. They don???t farm them?

Inf: They don???t farm them, very few, about two is all [FW: Mm-hmm]. The rest, uh, they???re not inclined to farming, and, and they???re not going to [FW: Mm-hmm]. The Indians were never agricultural, except the Mandans. And???

FW: Who are the Mandans?

Inf: Well, the Mandans were back near the Sioux. And, uh, had gone from being a nomadic people back to a great deal of farming [FW: Mm-hmm]. And they were killed, uh, by uh, uh, epidemics brought in by the White man. Nearly wiped out by-, by, uh, smallpox [FW: Hmm]. They were outstanding Indians.

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