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Dr. John McLoughlin


The story of the life of Dr. John McLoughlin comprises largely the history of Oregon beginning in the time of joint-occupancy of the Oregon Country, and continuing until after the boundary treaty dividing the Oregon Country between the United States and Great Britain, the establishment of the Oregon Territorial Government, and the passage of the Oregon Donation Law. It relates directly to events in Oregon from 1824 until the death of Dr. McLoughlin in 1857, and incidentally to what occurred in Oregon as far back as the founding of Astoria in 1811.

Prior to the Treaty of 1846 between the United States and England fixing the present northern boundary line of the United States west of the Rocky Mountains, what was known as the "Oregon Country" was bounded on the south by north latitude forty-two degrees, the present northern boundary of the states of California and Nevada; on the north by latitude fifty-four degrees and forty minutes, the present southern boundary of Alaska; on the east by the Rocky Mountains; and on the west by the Pacific Ocean. It included all of the states of Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, and parts of the states of Montana and Wyoming, and all of the present Dominion of Canada between latitudes forty-nine degrees and fifty-four degrees forty minutes, and west of the Rocky Mountains. Its area was approximately four hundred thousand square miles, an area about twenty-five per cent, greater than that of the original thirteen colonies at the time of the American Revolution.

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