Executive Committee Administration

Legislative Message, 1845

Source: Oregon State Archives, Oregon Provisional and Territorial Records, 1845, Calendar No. 1384.


Future of Oregon

Messages – Governor (Executive Committee)


To the Honorable Legislative Committee of Oregon,


While it becomes us at all times as descendants of civilized and enlightened nations to offer up our grateful acknowledgement to the Divine being for his protecting care especially are we called upon at this time to do form the consideration of the fact that our infant Colony existing among savages. And in the midst of conflicting political [claims] it has been blessed with peace and prosperity far beyond our original expectations.

Having had the pleasure of presenting the message at each of the two sessions of the legislative committee held in 1844 in which we so fully expressed our views in relation to political conditions we exceedingly regret that in consequence of the absence of the executive elect it has become our duty now to direct your attention to such subjects as we consider important to the interests and well being of Oregon.

The … we feel that … affairs in processing such a [formidable] condition as simply to support the well directed industry of our citizens affords us great satisfaction while the judgments with which the legislative committee [enacts] have for the most part…. And the prosperings with which our laws have been obeyed encourage us to rely with confidence upon you (who have been [elected] by the people at this time) for the adoption of … as our present circumstances seem in wisdom to demand.

While we deem it important to invite your attention to the necessity of a revision and amendment of the Organic and other Legislation that have already been adopted and the framing of others that you may deem necessary at this time, we would not conceal the fact that great difficulty might arise from too much Legislation whereby the amiable settlement of the questions under consideration by the Government of the United States and Great Britain relative to their respective claims to Oregon might be….

The inadequacy of the revenue to meet the -[current]- expenses of the Government --renders it necessary that … should be prepared to pay … upon the Treasury. And to [provide for] the unavoidable expenses of the Country.

We sincerely recommend that such a system of [retrenchment] should be adopted in the administration of the Government as may be thought [consistent] with its efficacy especially in the Judiciary Department.

We [deem it necessary] that the law requiring two [deputies] of the Court a year to hold in each County be so amended to require only …. whole Colony.

The land claim Law so amended at the last session of this house we deem inefficient in some of its most important features as not affording sufficient foundations to young men and [such as are occasionally enjoyed in one harvest] and the [pursuits for securing] the portion of land to which by our laws they are entitled.

For the documents necessary to guide you in apportioning the representation of the Counties respectively we refer you to the enumeration list in the Clerk’s Office.

By an act passed at the last session of this house the Executive was authorized … to contract for the building of a jail for which purpose 1500[?] Dollars was appropriated in carrying out the funding of said act, 1067[?] dollars only has been expended.

The act passed the last session of this house requiring a vote to be taken at the general Election for or against the call of a convention has been complied with and the result is a majority of votes against holding said convention.

We deem it important to call your attention to the fact that sickness and diseases of a most loathsome and distressing nature exists among the various tribes of Indians in this Colony. And that … and unjust applications are made by said Indians to a few individuals for supplies of medicine and medical assistance until it has become a heavy and unsupportable tax upon [us]. We would therefore suggest to you the propriety of taking this matter into your consideration.

In conclusion Gentlemen: While the [cheery] prospects of a smiling and abundant harvest which is about to yield to our industrial farmers an ample [remuneration] for their labor and the enjoyment of the necessaries and luxuries of refined society. We must refrain from …and material prejudices should exist among us to such an extent as to endanger our Community. We confidently believe however that there is sufficient virtue and intelligence in our Colony to secure the administration of the laws of our provisional Government until the brown stripes and bright stars of our beloved country … shall raise a triumph throughout the length and breadth of our beautiful Oregon.

Oregon City June 24th 1845

O. Russell

P.G. ?

Executive Committee of Oregon

State Archives • 800 Summer St. NE • Salem, OR 97310

Phone: 503-373-0701 • Fax: 503-378-4118 • reference.archives@state.or.us