Charter GSOC member Lon Hancock was first to discover vertebrate fossils in the Oregon's Clarno Formation

Charter GSOC member Lon Hancock was first to discover vertebrate fossils in the Oregon's Clarno Formation

By Viola L. Obserson, GSOC President 1984. Reprinted with permission from Oregon Geology, Oregon Dept. of Geology and Mineral Industries, December 1979.

Paleontologists the world over know of the work of Alonzo Wesley "Lon" Hancock (1884-1961). Professional men from the universities and museums of the world came to his door to study the fossils he found. He considered himself an amateur, attained no college degrees, and published no scientific papers, but the fossils his persistence enabled him to find have been the subjects of numerous papers, master's theses, and doctoral dissertations. And part of the geologic history of ancient Oregon has had to be rewritten because of his discoveries.

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Oregon Gems of the Rice Museum

Oregon Gems of the Rice Museum

Rice Museum curator Leslie Moclock is in charge of the museum’s education curriculum. In the course of her educational presentations, she finds that kids always ask deceptively tricky questions like, “Why are minerals the color that they are?” Moclock enjoys this part of her work because answering these questions opens doors to doing research. Examples of research topics she has pursued include two famous Oregon gemstones, opal (notably from Opal Butte in Morrow County) and sunstones (from Ponderosa and Plush area mines). 

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Nominating Committee Results

The following slate of officers has been selected by this year’s nominating committee:

President Paul Edison-Lahm
Vice President Sheila Alfsen
Secretary Carol Hasenberg
Treasurer Dawn Juliano
Director, 3 years Megan Faust
Director, 2 years Julia Lanning
Director, 1 year Larry Purchase

Nominations are closed for this year’s slate of officers. The slate of officers will be voted on and approved at the February monthly meeting.

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Helicopter Trip to Mt. St. Helens

Helicopter Trip to Mt. St. Helens

A small party of GSOC members braved the iffy weather on September 9, 2017, to take a new view of Mt. St. Helens, aboard a helicopter owned and piloted by Hillsboro Aviation Company, on a trip of geologic discovery organized by Sheila Alfsen. The flight was launched from North Fork Survivors tourist complex on Spirit Lake Highway east of Toutle, Washington.

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High School Teacher Emphasizes the Scientific Method in his Geoscience Class

High School Teacher Emphasizes the Scientific Method in his Geoscience Class

Frank Hladky, registered geologist who worked for DOGAMI (Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries) for 22 years, came to talk to GSOC about how he used his geological background to transform himself into a high school science teacher. He has been teaching high school in southern Oregon for over a dozen years now and is a member of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers.

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Future Solar Eclipses in Oregon

Future Solar Eclipses in Oregon

We will never see another total eclipse in our lifetime unless we leave Oregon, however eclipsewise.com has links to small scale world maps, each showing paths all eclipses in a chosen 20-year interval, with the date of each.

If the above website yields a date you are interested in, use the following Nasa Eclipse Website map with the exact date substituted for yyyymmdd. This will display a Google map with the eclipse path that you can zoom in on.

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New Info on the Origin of Bimodal Volcanism on Oregon’s High Lava Plains

New Info on the Origin of Bimodal Volcanism on Oregon’s High Lava Plains

April’s Friday night lecture was given by a truly distinguished Oregon geologist and highlighted recent research into an area that has long intrigued geoscientists about Oregon. Dr. Grunder has led a team of researchers, including PSU’s Martin Streck, exploring the possible origin of the magma that has peppered Oregon’s High Lava Plains geologic province in the last 12 million years. This magma includes both rhyolite and basalt eruptions in a swath of territory between Steen’s Mountain region to the southeast and Newberry Volcano to the northwest. 

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Thomas Condon's Fossil Collection

Thomas Condon's Fossil Collection

Professor Emeritus and Condon Collection Curator Dr. William Orr spoke to GSOC on May 12 about Thomas Condon’s fossils. This collection was assembled for teaching and reference and ranks with the best collections for stratigraphic continuity and taxonomic breadth. Many specialists from around the world come to the University of Oregon to study its fossils.
Photo: Thomas Condon with his pals Dr. Bill Orr (left) and GSOC President Rik Smoody (right).

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Climbing Through Cascades Geology

Climbing Through Cascades Geology

GSOC Past President Bo Nonn delivered the 82nd Annual GSOC banquet speech on March 12 to a fascinated crowd at Ernesto’s Italian Restaurant in Beaverton. He has a unique perspective on the geology of the Cascade Mountains: he has witnessed it in person by climbing all 16 Cascade peaks more than once, and has received several certificates of achievement from the Mazamas, as well as being a climbing instructor with that organization.

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Speaker Mike Collins Provides Dramatic Visualizations of Hotspot Evolution

Speaker Mike Collins Provides Dramatic Visualizations of Hotspot Evolution

Mike Collins, a retired administrator in manufacturing, and an avid mountaineering and geology enthusiast, presented his slide show “Flood Basalts, Hot Spots, and Spreading Centers and the Creation of the Western Landscape,” to a full house last month at the GSOC Friday night lecture. His show was based upon a manuscript he has produced explaining the evolution of the Western landscape in terms that non-technical people can understand. It is lavishly illustrated with scratchboard drawings that he has drawn, which take the reader back to scenes he describes in the book. 

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February Board Meeting Notes

President Bo Nonn called the meeting to order at the home of Rosemary Kenney. We thank Rosemary for having graciously hosting our board meetings since 2000. Board members present constituting quorum were Rik Smoody, Dawn Juliano, Paul Edison-Lahm, Marty Muncie, Larry Purchase, Janet Rasmussen, and Sheila Alfsen. Other members present included Carol Hasenberg, Dave Olcott, Jane Walpole, Peregrine Edison-Lahm, and Doug Rasmussen. The minutes from our December meeting were approved. 

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