Work begun by Professor F.G. Young of the University of Oregon was the inspiration for the establishment of the Oregon Historical Society, which was incorporated on Saturday, December 17, 1898 in the lecture room of the Portland library (The Sunday Oregonian, 18 December 1898).
Professor Young was asked to give an outline of his plan. This he did briefly, referring to similar societies in other states, but especially to that of Wisconsin, as affording the best model. He then called upon L. B. Cox to give the legal aspect of the matter. He responded by suggesting the mode of organization under existing state laws. A board of 10 directors was then elected . . .
Harvey W. Scott, former editor and part owner of The Oregonian, was elected president of the nascent society, and Portland was selected as the permanent place of business.
The Oregon Historical Quarterly has been published continuously since 1900, and since 1929 the society has published over 150 books on Oregon history, politics and culture, as well as biographies, field guides and exhibit catalogs.