State Of Jefferson - Southern Oregon & Northern California Secede From The Union!
Dead serious! Called the Secession movement of 1941, and they elected their own governor and petitioned the Federal government, requesting to become the 49th state, the State Of Jefferson.
"If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them, will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered." -- Thomas Jefferson
This movement began in revolt against Sacramento, California and Salem, Oregon. Citizens in Northern California and Southern Oregon felt that they were not receiving help from their states in road building and a host of other broken promises while the states showered money on the heavy population centers.
Five Oregon counties and three California counties joined together to form what they hoped would be a state made up of people with similar interests, lifestyles and geographic location. Feeling they were being ostracized by their current state governments, secession seemed the solution.
The state seal consisted of two X's on the bottom of a gold pan. The X's were to indicate that the secessionists felt "double crossed" by their respective state capitals.
The go ahead vote came from Yreka, California, and they had senators and judges from all of the mountainous counties of both states, and John Childs (a judge from Crescent City, California) was elected governor.
Voting was conducted throughout the eight counties, and the unanimous choice for naming the new state was "Jefferson," as Thomas Jefferson most closely reflected the independence that had formed our great country in the first place and they felt the rest of the nation was slowly leaning away from original Constitution and Bill of Rights. The State Of Jefferson citizens committee was formed in Yreka, California which was named the temporary state capital.
STATE OF JEFFERSON official flag.
Citizens committees from Yreka stopped all traffic going in both directions on Highway 99, and handed out information to all passersby about the secession movement and solicited support from all residents within the new states' boundaries.
The news was huge in California especially because of the massive population center around Hollywood. Naturally, with the media of the time frantically looking for any news items that would put them in the forefront of the industry, this one promised to be it! The San Francisco Chronicle had a reporter covering the daily events. His name was Stanton Delaplane and his constant and accurate reporting of all the surrounding events was front page for weeks. Eventually earning him the Pulitzer Prize.
The movement grew strength and the big newsreel companies from Hollywood came up to record the growing rebellion. Everything was to kick off a national blitz on December 8, 1941. Well, when Pearl Harbor was attacked on the 7th, the State Of Jeffersonceased to exist, as the country was more important than anyone's individual grievances.
Evidently the Japanese must have been worried about leaving the secessionists out of the war, so to make them feel that they were still a part of the U.S., they attacked them. On September 9, 1942, Nobuo Fujita dropped bombs near Brookings, Oregon.
Issues were resolved, as the timber and minerals of the State Of Jefferson were needed for the war effort and the mountain country got its' roads and development!
As Thomas Jefferson once stated, "...a little rebellion now and then is a good thing...!"
Part II will follow when research is complete on the "current secession movement."