In May 1989, administrators at Western Oregon State College (now Western Oregon University) approached the Horner Museum with the idea that an oral history project be conducted with Paul Jensen. From 1989-1991, this project was carried out by the Horner Museum, with oral historian Jennifer Lee serving as interviewer and project manager. The resulting Paul H. Jensen Oral Histories collection is comprised of seventeen audiocassettes documenting the seven interviews that Lee completed with Jensen. The interviews trace the arc of Jensen's biography, from his youth growing up on a farm in Denmark to his educational pursuits in Norway, Canada and the United States. His later work for the U.S. government in Mexico and Alaska are also discussed in depth, as are his memories of interactions with Alaskan Eskimo communities and his opinions on Eskimo culture.
The collection also includes preliminary and final draft transcripts of each interview, though finalized transcripts free of annotations do not remain extant. Project files including correspondence, notes, research materials and permissions forms round out the collection.
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