Continuing with our Yesterday's Voices series, we were joined by Norma Hamilton Cochran today. Norma's family has deep roots in Oregon. Her paternal great-grandfather, Jesse Stump, originally from Illinois, purchased 800 sheep in Independence, Missouri, and drove them to the Airlie area in Polk County in 1852. He married Martha Davidson whose family had settled in nearby Suver and they established their farm on the Luckiamute River. Their daughter, Jessie Belle Stump would go on to marry Clarence Sloane Hamilton, and their son Ralph would later marry Mary Claire Davis and become Norma's father.
She was very enthusiastic about the Mickey Mouse Club which met each Saturday at the Elsinore Theatre. This popular club boasted 3000+ members, aged 2 to16, and had its own page in the Oregon Statesman newspaper in 1936. Each week the children were treated to a talent show or presentation, cartoons, a continuing serial movie, a newsreel, and other activities.
Today, Norma and her second husband Robert live at Capital Manor. This vivacious, creative lady leads their Fiber Arts group, as well as dabbling in other artistic media. She has spent many hours collecting, preserving, and sharing family history materials, yet another legacy she will leave to those she loves. She truly is a Salem treasure, and we are so pleased to have been able to spend time with her.