Harvey W. Scott

Information
A photo of the Portland monument of Harvey Scott

Harvey Scott, 1933, bronze on a basalt pedestal

Location

Summit of Mount Tabor in Mt. Tabor Park

Creation and Dedication

Made by artist Gutzon Borglum, the statue was gifted to the city by Scott’s wife. It is in the City of Portland and Multnomah County’s Public Art Collection, courtesy of the Regional Arts & Culture Council.

Vandalism/Removal

The statue was vandalized with red paint in May and November 2019. In October 2020, following the national protests against police brutality and racism, the statue was toppled and damaged. It was removed by the City on October 20, 2020, and put in storage. On February 20, 2021, a bust of York, an enslaved Black member of the Lewis and Clark expedition, by a then-anonymous artist (now known to be Todd McGrain), appeared on the pedestal. On July 28, the bust was torn down and irreparably damaged.

Current Status

It is a contributing resource in a historic district (subject to City Council Demolition Review and possibly Historic Resource Review). As a contributing resource in a National Register historic district, the district would need to be updated if this monument were removed permanently. This monument is part of the City of Portland and Multnomah County Public Art Collection, courtesy of the Regional Arts & Culture Council. It is currently in storage, in need of repair.                                                                                                     

Noted Issues:

Harvey W. Scott was editor of The Oregonian newspaper from 1866 to 1872. Later in his career he purchased stock in the paper and returned as editor-in-chief. His editorials strongly supported the Union and the newly emerging Republican party during the Civil War. While many have celebrated Scott for his contribution to journalism, people have begun to question his legacy. In October 2022, The Oregonian published evidence that Scott’s 40-year tenure as the newspaper’s editor was an era when “overtly racist words” were commonly published in its pages[1].

Prior to his tenure at The Oregonian, Scott served as a volunteer in the Yakima War in Washington, violating the treaty rights of Yakama, Walla Walla, Umatilla, and Cayuse Indians.

The artist who made this statue, Gutzon Borglum, also made the Mount Rushmore National Memorial. As noted in multiple sources, including John Taliaferro’s history of Mount Rushmore, Borglum was affiliated with the Ku Klux Klan.

[1]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harvey_W._Scott