Sherman County eNews #142


  1. We Are All Self-Made

  2. 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree + Ornaments – Willamette National Forest

  3. History Tidbits:  Memorial Day: Wyman John French (1922-1945)

  4. Sherman County Modifies Housing Programs 

  5. World Wide Knit In Public Day, June 9

  6. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

“A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself within. The essential causes of Rome’s decline lay in her people, her morals, her class struggle, her failing trade, her bureaucratic despotism, her stifling taxes her consuming wars.” ~Durant

1. We Are All Self-Made

Do you know anyone who is a self-made man or woman – a self-made person? Do you know what that means to you? Let’s look at this subject today, and keep in mind your definition of “self-made” while you read.

From time to time, we hear someone describe him- or herself as “self-made.” What they usually mean is that their success wasn’t because they were born to wealthy, successful parents who set them up in life and work. Typically, they managed to succeed in spite of great odds. This is a generally accepted definition of self-made.

A few years back, when Lou Tice was giving a talk to a group of business people, he asked all the “self-made” folks to stand up. About 25 percent of the audience stood. Lou told them that every one of them should have been on their feet. You see, in the final analysis, all of us are self-made. Sure, some of us get off to an easier start, and some of us are fortunate enough to have had parents or others who helped us recognize and use our talents.

But success is not a matter of luck, or talent, or of being gifted. More than anything else, success is a matter of belief and persistence. If you don’t believe you can succeed, no amount of talent or money or good parenting will help you. (How many second-generation businesses have you seen fail?) If you do believe you can succeed and refuse to give up no matter how hard the struggle, no obstacle, setback, or disadvantage will stop you anyway.

George Bernard Shaw said it perfectly: “People are always blaming circumstances for what they are. But the people who get on in this world are those who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, they make them.”

So, has your definition of “self-made” changed in these last few minutes? Do you want to start making the circumstances you want? Alright then. Take charge of your life by taking accountability for being who you are! And if you don’t like what you see, you do have the power within you to change it. ~The Pacific Institute

2. 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree + Ornaments – Willamette National Forest

tree.evergreenThe Sweet Home Ranger District of the Willamette National Forest has been chosen to provide the 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas tree. The tree will be cut in early November and prepared for the 3,000-mile coast-to-coast journey that will trace the Oregon Trail in reverse and include a series of community celebrations throughout Oregon and across the U.S. 

The journey will culminate with the official tree lighting on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building in early December. Seventy smaller companion trees will also be sent from the forest to Washington, D.C. to decorate government buildings and public spaces this December. Additionally, Oregonians will contribute 10,000 handmade ornaments, to be created throughout 2018. See:

FIND YOUR ORNAMENT! In celebration of the 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas tree, we are hosting an ornament hunt in the Willamette National Forest to inspire and increase outdoor recreation, connect you to beautiful public lands, and to win prizes. 

Two hundred glass ornaments are hidden along non-wilderness trails on the Willamette National Forest for lucky adventurers like you to find!

In addition to a keepsake ornament, over 120 prizes will be awarded and all entrants who submit their ornament tag I.D. will be enrolled in a sweepstakes for the grand prize: 

A round trip for two to Washington D.C. to attend the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree lighting and festivities.  

So get out there today and find an ornament! The contest runs from Memorial Day weekend to October 2nd 2018, the anniversary of the National Trails System Act.

 3. History Tidbits:  Memorial Day: Wyman John French (1922-1945)

American-Flag-StarQuips from the Column, These Things We Note, and Selected Editorials Published in the Sherman County Journal, 1931-1966 by Giles French, Binfords & Mort, Publishers, Portland, Oregon 1966.

6-1-1945 Sherman County Journal

Wyman John French (1922-1945) by Giles L. French

”Dear Son,

”This is Memorial day. It has been three months and three days since you got that bit of shrapnel in your chest over there in Holland and died for your country.

”A lot of things have happened since then and I know with your interest in public affairs you would like to know of them, although they mean nothing to you now. The bit push that started a day or two before you died was successful and Germany gave up early in May, but not until her armies and Berlin had been taken by Joe’s men.

”Had you gone on into Germany you would have seen some very shocking things, or so we are told. The Germans had treated those who disagreed with them very badly, starving them and overworking them.

”We are hearing much about it because it makes good copy – and exciting pictures – and because it fits well into the general picture that is painted for us. It strengthens the propaganda that we were fighting to end all such cruelties, or, at least, the regime that did it.

”I know that if you and Carl – who was killed ten days after you were – had felt that you were fighting to end all governments that practiced cruelty you would have had but momentary regret at the fatal results to you.

”But you didn’t feel that way. You had read too much history and knew that wars decide nothing except who shall live and who shall die. No ideology was ever destroyed by a war, but many have been strengthened thereby. You wouldn’t have fought to make the Germans or anyone else accept our ideal of democracy, for you were too liberal for that.

”I remember you saying that the young men you were going to fight against were probably about the same as you were, in that they hoped they would come out of it alive and be able to go on living at some peaceful pursuit, raising a family and making a place for them in the world. There was no hate in you. Maybe there was no hate in the fellow who shot you.

”Had you believed all the idealistic propaganda of the wartime, you would be surprised to learn the Russians are marching Germany prisoners back to the Ukraine to rebuild that destroyed country. For a man who has lost his life for justice and freedom and the pursuit of happiness, that would have come as a shock. We of the democratic nation are doing a fine job of not letting our left hand know what our right is doing.

”The man who sent you to war is dead, too. His end came about a month before Germany’s did. There is a conference being held in San Francisco to make up a plan for world order, but no one has a lot of confidence in it. Most people you meet think there will be another war in 20 to 25 years and that any kind of order, good or bad, would last until a new crop of people grow up – and no longer. You see, we are pretty pessimistic.

”The hills are green now, although the spring has been cold and backward; the cattle are fat and sleek and the grain is growing well since we had big rains the first of the month. There will be a good crop and big money again for the farmers. Everybody is doing well, with wages high and profits big because of the war.

”This is your first Memorial day as a memorialee instead of a memorialor. We had a program on the courthouse lawn and dedicated an honor roll with the names of all you boys on it. Those of you who have died have a place under a gold star. There will be many words said about you on future Memorial days. I do hope, and I know you would, that something will have come from your death. I know you did not expect it and neither do I. But you are never going to have to worry about it.

”Your grave over there in the low hills of Holland seems pretty far away, son, especially on this day, and your mother and I would like to be able to stand beside it a few moments and think about you.

”The high hopes we had that you had so far justified are there with you in foreign soil. The little men who yapped about the necessity of the war are quieter now as they contemplate the pictures of our overseas graveyards; the swaggering ones who glorify war will soon be in eclipse. What will persist forever and ever is the quietness, the silence of your brave young voices. What you could have done in the world will go undone and the world has lost that. It has had another lesson on might, on the value of power.

”The town is just the same. We and the neighbors go about our tasks as before. There is nothing else to do. We stay in our habits of work and play. Our pleasure that the European war is over comes from the relief that no more will be shot, not from the hope that there will be a new world to live in.

”The simple things are what interest us; life, death, food and shelter, hopes and fears. The wrangling of nations brings us misery more often than joy.

”We’ll be remembering you, son. And every day we can see you swing up the walk toward home in that long-legged stride you had. And your whistle sounds above the rattle of the job press when there is a moment of calm in the office.

”So-long, son,


4. Sherman County Modifies Housing Programs 

ShermanCoLogoSherman County recently expanded its grant programs offered to address challenges with inadequate housing stock in the County.  After hearing many stories of new local employees who would like to live in Sherman County but can’t find housing, Sherman County explored options to help spur the development of additional rental housing. To address this, the County created two new housing grant programs.

The New Rental Housing Development Grant program provides $10,000 per unit for construction of new rental housing. Houses must be stick-built or new manufactured homes that are at least double-wides on a foundation. Additionally, the grant recipient must agree to keep the new house as a long-term rental for at least five years and each qualifying rental unit constructed must be self-contained.

In acknowledgement that dilapidated and vacant houses create blight in communities and that the investment required to bring existing housing up to standards needed for a family to live in them is a barrier, Sherman County developed a Housing Rehabilitation Grant program. This grant is for non-owner occupied, stick-built housing and is up to 20% of approved project costs, not to exceed $20,000. The Court updated the program to limit $50,000 of the purchase price of a home as eligible matching funds for the home owner’s contribution to the project. This change will go into effect June 30, 2018. The dwelling must meet FHA/VA habitability standards once the rehabilitation is complete.

Due to feedback from mortgage providers regarding their ability to provide construction to permanent mortgage bridge loans for housing, the County has discontinued their Construction Loan gap financing program. However, Mid-Columbia Economic Development District (MCEDD), has unique loan funds set aside for the development of Attainable Housing, serving the middle housing market of 60-120% median family income. For more information about these programs, contact Carrie Pipinich Sherman County’s Economic Development Coordinator with MCEDD, at 541-296-2266 or

5. World Wide Knit In Public Day, June 9

lana-architetto-francesc-01Bring your chairs and your knitting or crochet on June 9th, World Wide Knit in Public Day, and join us in front of Sage Mountain Primitives in Moro, Oregon, for a fun day of socializing. We will be providing a lunch, dessert, coffee and tea. ~Deena Johnson, Sage Mountain Primitives

6. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

bird.owl.bookThe Federalist blog

Prager U.: America’s 2nd War of Independence

Map: Hometowns of Americans who died for U.S. since 9/11

Media Bias/Fact Check

Words. Animate. Language.