R.V. Short was a local citizen and member of the first Oregon Constitutional Convention

by: SPOKESMAN PHOTO: JOSH KULLA - The RV Short Heritage Fir in Wilsonville is found in the Merryfield neighborhood off Camelot Street. The Oregon State Heritage Tree Program honored one of the Wilsonville’s most prominent landmarks Friday, when it inducted the Robert Valentine (R.V.) Short Heritage Fir Tree into the official state roster of heritage trees.

The towering Douglas fir stands on the remnants of R.V. Short's original donation land claim at Merryfield Park in Wilsonville.

Oregon Travel Experience (OTE), the Oregon Heritage Tree Committee and the city of Wilsonville hosted the public event, with Wilsonville Mayor Tim Knapp and R.V. Short’s great-grandson Doug Anderson sharing the history and the treasure behind the notable citizen and the tree that bears his name.

Heritage Tree Committee member and former Wilsonville Mayor Charlotte Lehan was a featured speaker along with OTE's CEO, Kyle Walker.

While most other Douglas fir trees near this location were logged to create farmland, the R.V. Short fir remained as a landmark. As a land surveyor, Short surveyed claims throughout the northern Willamette Valley and in 1850 created the first plat of Portland. Short was a member of the first Oregon Constitutional Convention, the first Yamhill County Surveyor and a State Legislator.

The R.V. Short Heritage Tree possesses an impressive set of statistics. At approximately 300 years old, the fir now stands 119 feet tall with a circumference of 16 feet and 1 inch. Its crown spreads 55 feet.

OTE oversees the official Oregon Heritage Tree Program and is a semi-independent state agency located in Salem with a focus on transportation-related services. OTE builds programs that help drive new traffic into nearby communities, contributing to local economic prosperity. The agency manages 29 rest areas across the state, permits highway logo signs and administers to two heritage programs: Heritage Trees and Historical Markers.

The exact location of the tree requires a short walk or wheelchair ride from street parking along Southwest Camelot Street in Wilsonville.

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