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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/385

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Marshall's Acquisition of Oregon

manded its possession even to the line of "fifty-four-forty-or-fight."

However, this criticism is of Marshall's conclusions, not of his facts. There they are for the reader to judge. Marshall asks no person to accept his conclusions.

But for Marshall's untimely death in 1906, undoubtedly he would have improved this crowning work of his life; perhaps revised some of his conclusions; probably given his book finer literary arrangement; certainly fixed himself more firmly as a foremost authority on Oregon history, as he is the very first authority on the Whitman legend. It will not be necessary for anybody else to disprove that legend.

Only 200 copies of the book have been printed. This has been accomplished through contribution of money by some twelve residents of Oregon and Washington, who saw the need of bringing to fruition the life work of Professor Marshall. This effort, headed by C. B. Bagley of Seattle, has been entirely successful.

Whitman Needs No False Glory.

Dr. Marcus Whitman needs no false glory; nor does the missionary cause which did great things for Oregon; neither does Whitman College—an ever growing monument to this patriot hero. Dr. Whitman will be an everlasting figure in Oregon annals; always will be honored by the gratitude of our people. But he was but one character among many, though indeed a foremost one, in occupation of Oregon. He did his duty as missionary, pioneer, citizen, and died a martyr's death at the hand of the savage. He did not "save Oregon," that is, he alone did not.

In company with other Americans, Whitman carried the claims of his country to this region, and with them won Oregon from the British. Occupation of Oregon and consequent possession by the United States belongs to no one man, but to many. Jason Lee and his associates, who settled in the Willamette Valley in the critical time are equal in honor to Whitman. Before these pioneers, and contemporaneous with