Labor Day Reflections


Labor Day was last Monday (September 4, 2023).  These photographs from the museum’s collection show Benton County workers from different periods in our history. 

 Carpentry work has employed many people, both in the past and today.  In this 1939 photograph, the men are demolishing part of the Hout house to make way for a new building. 

Demolition of the Hout house, Corvallis, Oregon, USA

During the 1940s, many Benton County residents found work at Camp Adair– first in construction and then working in the kitchen, among other activities.  

Man sanding the floor of ta bowling alley 
Gladys Mulkey of Philomath cutting cauliflower in the Camp Adair kitchen
Gladys Mulkey of Philomath, Oregon, cutting cauliflower in the Camp Adair kitchen.

During the 1940s and 1950s the logging industry expanded. These men are using a two-person chainsaw, similar to that on display at the Corvallis Museum, to cut down an old-growth Douglas fir.

Logging with a two-person chain saw

Oregon State University’s growth in the 1960s provided many jobs for locals as well as attracting new residents.

Oregon State University microbiology lab work
These people are working in the Oregon State University microbiology lab.

Driving a truck and working in an office are still common occupations. 

Dee Brown driving a logging truck.
Working in the Benton County Finance Department, 1986

The health care industry has been one of the largest in the Benton County industry for many years.  This photograph is from circa 1985.

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