After graduating from Union High School, Merton Davis attended Oregon Agricultural College from 1915 though 1917, where he studied agriculture and architecture. He was a member of Kappa Sigma. He enlisted in the Navy in 1917 and served in World War I in Naval Aviation in Porto Corsino, Italy. After the war, he returned to North Powder, Oregon.
Eleanor Grace Hall, also from Union, attended OAC from 1915 to 1917; she studied music. When Eleanor was a student, she was a member of the Madrigal Club, which was formed in the fall of 1909 "for the combined purposes of the study of part song and operas and pleasure" (The Orange, 1917, page 75). In 1917, she was the president of the club. She was also a member of the Alpha Chi Omega fraternity.
Having met in college, the two were married on October 9, 1919, when Merton returned from World War I. In 1924, they founded the Texaco Service Station in Union, Oregon. After Merton's father, Alonzo Benjamine Davis, passed away in 1938, the two assumed responsibility for the family ranching business; they sold the station in 1947 and ranched full-time until their retirement in 1967.
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