World War I service medal

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Before the war

Defense Council Square marker

Active service

Home front

After the war

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State Archivist Seal
An exhibit by the
Oregon State Archives

Oregon at War! American soldiers marching through gas shelled French town.
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State Council of Defense for Oregon
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The U.S. flag was prominent in many patriotic campaigns promoted by the council

  State Historian Cornelia Marvin worked to save the Oregon's war history
  Francis Coon of Corvallis, who served in naval aviation, is one of tens of thousands documented in the personal military service histories
  The Oregon flag represented the state's control of life on the home front in unprecedented ways during the war
   

World War I presented challenges that existing state agencies were not well equipped to meet. Certainly, the Oregon National Guard played a central role in the state's response to war. But there were legal and practical limits to its powers. Oregon needed the ability to address a wide range of home front issues with speed and flexibility, unencumbered by the status quo and engrained institutional barriers.

The defense council existed for only a short time during the war but it took on the vital job of coordinating a myriad of efforts on the home front. And it left a legacy of personal military service histories that provide an invaluable window into the experiences of nearly 36,000 Oregonians who went to war.

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Rising to the times
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The council in context: an overview
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A busy agenda
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Securing the historical record

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About the images delta
The U.S. flag was prominent in many patriotic campaigns promoted by the council; State Historian Cornelia Marvin worked to save the Oregon's war history; Francis Coon of Corvallis, who served in naval aviation, is one of tens of thousands documented in the personal military service histories; The Oregon flag represented the state's control of life on the home front in unprecedented ways during the war.

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