Cedar panels in Special Collections

Special Collections & University Archives

Cedar panels in Paulson Reading Room

Clough cedar panelThe Paulson Reading Room includes two large works carved from inch-thick Oregon cedar. Art Clough was the designer and lead carver, assisted by Ross McClure and apprentice Jim de Broekert. Each of the works is a triptych with a bottom frieze. At the center of each panel is a mountain framed by tall conifers, with a bridge-like span of mist depicting events of previous eras.

West triptych (shown at left)

Left panel: "Trails in the shadow of Mount Hood." Forest telephone lines being installed; a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) trail improvement crew at work; a government mule pack train; recreational hikers. In the mist above, pioneers with covered wagons cross the Barlow Trail on the south slope of Mount Hood.

Central panel: "Halcyon days at the foot of Mount Jefferson." A tourist campoground with CCC camp improvement crew at work. In the mist span, Indians and fur traders negotiate.

Right panel: "Below the spires of Three-Fingered Jack." A CCC crew constructs a lookout tower, with an old "crows nest" lookout atop a tree beside it. In the mist railway surveyors and their pack animals are at work.

Frieze: "Release of youth from Depression conditions." Scenes of urban poverty and desperation.

East triptych

Left panel: "Mount Washington." A road crew replacing a trail. In the mist, frontiersmen meeting mounted Indians.

Central panel: "The Three Sisters." People relaxing at a CCC construction camp, with a mapping class. In the mist, a work crew getting a wagon over a trail.

Right panel: "Mount Thielsen." Construction of a bridge, with government mules fording the deep river below. In the mist, a stagecoach traveling at speed.

Frieze: "Release of youth from Depression conditions." Scenes of urban poverty and desperation.

Other Resources:

Register Guard Article,"Oregon History in Cedar," April 5, 2012, by Bob Keefer

Oregon Quarterly, "Stories Carved in Cedar," Summer 2013, Vol. 92, no. 4,  by Kenneth O'Connell

Created by nhelmer on Jun 18, 2012 Last updated Jun 4, 2013