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5 Fun Facts About May 23 In Oregon History

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1. The first store in Oregon to sell electricity was established on May 23, 1889, in the city of Baker City. Previously, electricity was not widely available in Oregon, and the store's introduction of electric lighting was a major milestone in the state's technological development.

2. On May 23, 1913, the State of Oregon passed the nation's first minimum wage law. The law established a minimum wage of $0.10 per hour for women and children, and was designed to counteract the exploitation of workers by unscrupulous employers.

3. The famous Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood opened to the public on May 23, 1938. The lodge, which was built as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project during the Great Depression, is now a popular destination for skiers, hikers, and visitors to the Mount Hood National Forest.

4. On May 23, 1952, the city of Salem experienced a major flood, caused by heavy rains and melting snow. The flood forced more than 600 residents to evacuate their homes, and caused extensive damage to buildings and infrastructure throughout the city.

5. May 23, 1977, marked the beginning of the notorious Rajneeshpuram commune in central Oregon. Led by the guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, the commune was controversial for its perceived cult-like practices and its clashes with local authorities. The Rajneeshpuram ultimately disbanded in the mid-1980s after a series of legal troubles and scandals.
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