Oregon City Interpretive Center aka End of the Oregon Trail, or the Covered Wagons April 22, 2023 Tour and Lunch
We initially wanted to do this tour in 2020. Then came COVID. Since then, every time I would call, I’d get a message saying they were closed due to COVID restrictions… They finally reopened earlier this year.
We scheduled our tour for April thinking we would certainly have decent Thunderbird weather by then. Instead, it has been much colder and much wetter than the averages all winter long-plus, requiring all but the very brave to keep their Thunderbirds warm and dry in their garages.
With the promise of a rare dry day, the first mid-60s day of the year, five Classic Thunderbirds – one top-down! (mine) – and one retro-Bird, plus assorted other vehicles ventured out into a bit of light drizzle and wet pavement the morning of April 22, 2023. The weather turned out to be great the rest of the day. Twenty-two of our members participated in this event.
The interpretive center is located at Abernathy Green, named for early settler and businessman George Abernathy, in Oregon City, the location of the official End of the Oregon Trail – or at least of the Barlow Road route – about 175 years ago.
We were greeted by our docent, John. He first led us to the theater where he gave us a roughly half hour history lesson of the area, beginning in the 1500s. Once we got to the migration of the pioneers coming west along what became known as the Oregon Trail, John started a very nicely done video presentation. In a Disney-like fashion, we even had a couple of short talks by John McLoughlin of the Hudson’s Bay Co., who was a tremendous help to the pioneers that arrived in Oregon City. After the video, we headed for another section of the museum to view artifacts from the migration era. John was available to answer our questions.
Following the tour, we headed east along scenic Clackamas River Dr. to the Carver Hanger where we all enjoyed a very nice lunch.
Text above and photos below courtesy Jim Sweet.
The photos below of John McLoughlin Jim took during a presentation look like a hologram, however the museum assures Jim that it is a projection on a flat screen. Pretty amazing technology!