We currently have a mini-archives exhibit all about squirrels on display on the first floor of the library. There are tidbits of info about our infamous squirrels, including a petition that went to Governor McCall in the 1970s to declare the squirrels an endangered species near Willamette University and the Oregon State Capitol Building. Two separate Willamette Collegian articles are highlighted that accused Longview, Washington of stealing squirrels. These two articles started the controversy surrounding the squirrel-napping.
Did you know that Willamette University’s squirrel population is made up of grey squirrels? The grey squirrels were brought as a gift for the school in the 1880s. Unfortunately, grey squirrels are an invasive species to the Pacific Northwest and displace red squirrels.
Thank you Kate Kerns, intern in our Archives and Special Collections, for pulling this exhibit together with materials from our Archives and Special Collections. A special thank you to Sybil Westenhouse for investing in experiential learning through the Sybil Westenhouse Archives Excellence Fund.