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September 2011

Mexican American Activism in Oregon

Join Sonny Montes and Glenn Anthony May—plus special guests John Little and Jose Romero—for a conversation about the past, present, and future of Mexican American activism in Oregon.

Thursday, Sept. 29, 4 pm, Oregon State University, MU Journey Room
Friday, Sept. 30, 3:30 pm, University of Oregon, 110 Law School

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Sonny Montes was at the center of the birth of Oregon’s Chicano movement, focused on the struggle for survival of the Colegio Cesar Chavez, a small college in Mt. Angel, Oregon, with a largely Mexican American student body.

John Little is the former executive director of the Valley Migrant League, an organization that played a vital role in stimulating the development of a Mexican American community in Oregon. Jose Romero, co-founder with Sonny of the Colegio Cesar Chavez, was one of the two leaders of the successful movement to rename a major Portland street in honor of Cesar Chavez.

Glenn Anthony May's new book, Sonny Montes and Mexican American Activism in Oregon, provides a needed account of the Mexican American community in Oregon during that time period while it deepens our understanding of the Chicano Movement in Oregon and beyond.

Read an excerpt from the book.

Restoring the Elwha

Finding the River cover On Saturday, September 17, 2011, the demolition of Washington's Elwha River dams begins. This ambitious dam removal—mandated by a landmark federal case in 1992—marks a new phase in the history of the Elwha River—and in the history of rivers in the United States. Read more about the removal here and here.

We're pleased to announce the publication, later this fall, of a long-term environmental and human history of the river by Jeff Crane. Finding the River: An Environmental History of the Elwha describes the long struggle to remove the dams and explores the rise of a river restoration movement. Jeff had a few comments to share at this historic moment:

"Removing man's monuments to progress in order to improve nature, advocates of Elwha River and fisheries restoration prove that competing constituencies and interest groups can negotiate a new ethical and ecological middle ground. Aldo Leopold wrote, 'We shall hardly relinquish the shovel.' On the Elwha River it was put to good use more than once."

Preorder copies.

Read an excerpt from the book.

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