Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission

                               Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission

Literary Oregon, 100 Books, 1800 - 2000


The List

In celebration of the Oregon State Library’s Centennial, the Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission has chosen 100 books from the years 1800 to 2000 that exemplify the best of Oregon’s rich literary heritage. The books were featured in an exhibit “Literary Oregon, 100 Books, 1800 – 2000."

The purpose of the project is to reintroduce Oregonians to our finest authors and encourage them to read the books on the list. “These hundred books speak to the quality of our literary community over time, our rich culture, and the influence of our amazing landscape,” said Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission President David Milholland. The list includes novels, poetry, memoirs, literary non-fiction, and children’s books. Oregon’s best-known authors, including Beverly Cleary, William Stafford, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Jean Auel, all have books on the list, in addition to lesser-known authors whose works deserve to be rediscovered.

“We hope Oregonians will take this list and head straight to their local library or bookstore, and start reading,” said State Librarian Jim Scheppke. “We also hope that we can encourage publishers to reprint books that have gone out-of-print and are not as easy to find as they should be.”

Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission members spent many months narrowing down the list to 100. In the end it was necessary to pick only one book for each author, a difficult task when considering the work of authors such as Ken Kesey or Don Berry.