The Jason Lee House - Salem, Oregon
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member ddtfamily
N 44° 56.063 W 123° 01.577
10T E 497926 N 4975661
Marker describing the history of the Jason Lee House
Waymark Code: WMH44Y
Location: Oregon, United States
Date Posted: 05/19/2013
Published By:Groundspeak Regular Member silverquill
Views: 2

This marker describes provides background information about this historic house, built in 1841. The text reads:


This house was originally built for Reverend Jason Lee (June 28, 1803-March 13, 1845) and was located at 960 Broadway, near the intersection of Broadway, Liberty and High Streets. It was the place where he carried out the work of running the Mission until he left in December of 1843. In 1844, when Rev. Gary divested the assets of the Willamette Mission, the house was sold. It went on to house Salem's first post office and its second store; it served as the Oregon Territory's first treasury, and as Marion County's first courtroom. The Jason Lee House was moved to this site in 1965.

Built in the winter of 1841, with lumber from the newly constructed Willamette Mission saw mill, the Jason Lee House has the distinction of being one of the oldest frame houses still standing west of the Rocky Mountains. Between 1841 and 1844, this house served as the Mission's headquarters, as a meeting place during the formation of the Provisional Government, and as an apartment house for four families.

Although built for Lee, four families occupied this house, two families on each floor, with eight adults and eight children total. It is difficult for us to imagine living in such small spaces, with all aspects of daily life occurring here from sleeping, preparing food and eating, to working, playing and personal hygiene.

Photo Captions:

  • The Jason Lee House shortly after being moved to Mission Mill Museum and restored.
  • Rev. Jason Lee, head of the Methodist Mission to Oregon.
  • The Jason Lee House as it stood at 960 Broadway Street, ca. 1930. The wing jutting out to the left and the porch on the right were added in the 1880s by Judge R. P. Boise.

  • Click a photo to enlarge

Historic Topic: Pioneer

Group Responsible for placement: Historical Society

Marker Type: City

Region: Willamette Valley

County: Marion

Web link to additional information: [Web Link]

State of Oregon Historical Marker "Beaver Board": Not listed

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