Letters to the Editor Winter 2022

Marjory Ramey (second from left) and fellow Ducks Derek McBride (left), Alyssa Bui, and Mike Henningsen graced the Autumn cover

Thanks for Unthank Hall . . . and Marge Ramey

Scott Dunlap, BS ’92 (finance), and I really enjoyed reading about the exciting new DeNorval Unthank Jr. Hall, and it was a delight to see “cover girl” Marjory Ramey, longtime UO housing director, on the Oregon Quarterly cover (Autumn 2021). As lifelong Ducks, it is wonderful to see good people recognized for their lasting impact on our beloved campus.

Diane Dunlap, PhD ’80 (educational policy and management)

Ellicott City, Maryland


What a nice surprise to see Marge Ramey on the cover of the autumn Oregon Quarterly! She was a delight when, 50 years ago, she interviewed me for an RA position, and she continues to be an encouraging inspiration. Thank you, Mrs. Ramey!

Sondra Twedt Higgs, BA ’74 (Romance languages)

Portland, Oregon

Making Boo-tiful Music

Just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed the article “Ghost Stories” in the Autumn 2021 issue. My mother, Martha, worked at the UO in the late 1970s until her retirement. She worked in the “physical plant,” as it was known back then.

Her assignment was to clean Gerlinger and Gerlinger Annex, next to the Pioneer Cemetery. She did the graveyard shift (no pun intended). There was many a morning she’d come home from work and tell us kids about the “Phantom Bagpiper” she had heard that night.

To this day, I wonder if there was really a phantom, or just someone who enjoyed playing bagpipes in the middle of the night.

Carmen M. Bradbury

Springfield, Oregon

Remembering the “Cardboard Castle”

The recent publication of Oregon Quarterly was a good example of what it should look like. The articles were well written, with great photographs.

The article “Then and Now” was good, but it left out some history of the University of Oregon. Many of the old buildings were described, when they were built and when they were replaced, but one building wasn’t even mentioned. I am speaking of the “Veterans Dorm.” It had several names, but it was commonly called the “cardboard castle.” The building was never meant to be a permanent structure, but it served the needs the university was faced with after World War II. I personally believe that a special article with photographs needs to be a part of the next issue.

Alan C. Brunk, BA ’59 (architecture)

Toutle, Washington

Millennials on the Rise

Thank you, Quarterly, for the vibrant reader dialogue generated by Anne Helen Petersen’s take on Millennials (“Boosting the ‘Burnout Generation,’” Spring 2021).

I’m saddened to see fellow alums scolding Millennials with sarcasm (“Who forged their signatures on financial aid applications?”) or chastising their “obsession with how celebrities live” (as if previous generations weren’t obsessed with the lives of Elizabeth Taylor, the Beatles, or Michael Jackson.) Most concerning is the alum who lectures students to simply manage their money better and avoid debt.

Ironically, these letters only reinforce Petersen’s belief that “Americans are very good at brushing things under the table instead of addressing some of the larger problems that we have” when it comes to race, economics, and equality. We can only hope that as Millennials assume the reins of power in the coming years, they will do better than we have in addressing the flawed social and economic policies that have shaped their young lives.

Dan Field, JD ’90

Portland, Oregon

Promoting Pioneer Father

The Autumn 2021 feature, “Transforming our University,” describes 16 projects that should bring pride to all. But I was saddened not to see a 17th project: “The statue of the Pioneer Father was restored to its place of honor on 13th Avenue, surrounded by holly, ivy, and fir seedlings. At the ceremony, President Schill praised the founders of the university and reminded that we stand today on the shoulders of those who came before. The crowd applauded politely . . . ”

James W. Eyres, BA ’66 (economics)

San Francisco, California

We want to hear from you. Submit your letters by email to quarterly@uoregon.edu, at OregonQuarterly.com, or by mail to Editor, Oregon Quarterly, 5228 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-5228. Published letters may be edited for brevity, clarity, and style.

Photo By Dustin Whitaker, University Communications

CORRECTION: Muscovy ducks are native to Central and South America, although they can also be found in New Zealand, Australia, and elsewhere. An article in the Autumn 2021 issue included an accidental misstatement.