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Calendar No. 130
108th Congress Report
1st Session 108-66
McLOUGHLIN HOUSE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE ACT
June 9, 2003.--Ordered to be printed
Mr. Domenici, from the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources,
submitted the following
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 733]
The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, to which was
referred the Act (H.R. 733) to authorize the Secretary of the
Interior to acquire the McLoughlin House National Historic Site
in Oregon City, Oregon, and to administer the site as a unit of
the National Park System, and for other purposes, having
considered the same, reports favorably thereon with an
amendment and an amendment to the title and recommends that the
Act, as amended, do pass.
The amendments are as follows:
1. Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in
lieu thereof the following:
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; DEFINITIONS.
(a) Short Title.--This act may be cited as the ``McLoughlin House
Addition to Fort Vancouver National Historic Site Act.''
(b) Definitions.--For the purposes of this Act, the following
(1) City.--The term ``City'' means Oregon City, Oregon.
(2) McLoughlin house.--The term ``McLoughlin House'' means
the McLoughlin House National Historic Site which is described
in the Acting Assistant Secretary of the Interior's Order of
June 27, 1941, and generally depicted on the map entitled
``McLoughlin House, Fort Vancouver National Historic Site'',
numbered 389/92,002, and dated 5/01/03, and includes the
McLoughlin House, the Barclay House, and other associated real
property, improvements, and personal property.
(3) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of
SEC. 2. MCLOUGHLIN HOUSE ADDITION TO FORT VANCOUVER.
(a) Acquisition.--The Secretary is authorized to acquire the
McLoughlin House, from willing sellers only, by donation, purchase with
donated or appropriated funds, or exchange, except that lands or
interests in lands owned by the City may be acquired by donation only.
(b) Map Availability.--The map identifying the McLoughlin House
referred to in section 1(b)(2) shall be on file and available for
inspection in the appropriate offices of the National Park Service,
Department of the Interior.
(c) Boundaries; Administration.--Upon acquisition of the McLoughlin
House, the acquired property shall be included within the boundaries
of, and be administered as part of, the Fort Vancouver National
Historic Site in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.
(d) Name Change.--Upon acquisition of the McLoughlin House, the
Secretary shall change the name of the site from the ``McLoughlin House
National Historic Site'' to the ``McLoughlin House''.
(e) Federal Laws.--After the McLoughlin House is acquired and added
to Fort Vancouver National Historic Site, any reference in a law, map,
regulation, document, paper, or other record of the United States to
the ``McLoughlin House National Historic Site'' (other than this Act)
shall be deemed a reference to the ``McLoughlin House'', a unit of Fort
Vancouver National Historic Site.
Amend the title so as to read, ``A bill to authorize the
Secretary of the Interior to acquire the McLoughlin House in
Oregon City, Oregon for inclusion in Fort Vancouver National
Historic Site, and for other purposes.''.
PURPOSE OF THE MEASURE
The purpose of H.R. 733 is to authorize the Secretary of
the Interior to acquire the McLoughlin House National Historic
Site in Oregon City, Oregon, and to administer the site as part
of the unit of the National Park System known as the Fort
Vancouver National Historic Site.
BACKGROUND AND NEED
The McLoughlin House National Historic Site in Oregon City,
Oregon was once home to Dr. John McLoughlin. Dr. McLoughlin was
chief factor of the British Hudson's Bay Company based at Fort
Vancouver on the Columbia River. He crossed the Rockies in 1824
and established Fort Vancouver in 1825. Dr. McLoughlin supplied
American pioneers with the goods they needed to settle and
survive at their new home in Oregon. A fur trader, developer,
doctor, and mayor, Dr. McLoughlin became known as the ``Father
of Oregon'' and the McLoughlin House was restored to honor his
life and accomplishments.
The McLoughlin Memorial Association was formed in 1909. In
1910, the Association opened the McLoughlin House as a museum.
Since that time, the house has been visited by thousands of
individuals each year. In 1941, Congress designated the
McLoughlin House a National Historic Site and it continued to
operate under the direction of the Association. When Fort
Vancouver National Historic Site was established in 1948, the
National Park Service (NPS) entered into a formal agreement
with the Association to work cooperatively together.
In 2000, the Association approached the NPS concerning the
possibility of the agency assuming administration of the site.
The Association lacks appropriate funds to maintain the
historic houses and has asked that the NPS acquire the site and
assume responsibility to ensure the future care of the Historic
Site with the Association remaining active in an advisory
H.R. 733 was introduced in February 2, 2003 and passed the
House of Representatives by voice vote on April 8, 2003.
Companion legislation, S. 601, was introduced by Senators Smith
and Wyden on March 12, 2003. The Subcommittee on National Parks
held a hearing on H.R. 733 and S. 601 on May 13, 2003.
At the business meeting on May 21, 2003, the Committee on
Energy and Natural Resources ordered H.R. 733, as amended,
The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, in open
business session on May 21, 2003, by a voice vote of a quorum
present, recommends that the Senate pass H.R. 733, if amended
as described herein.
During the consideration of H.R. 733, the Committee adopted
an amendment in the nature of a substitute. The amendment
deletes congressional findings, and makes other clarifying and
technical changes. The amendment is explained in the section-
by-section analysis, below.
Section 1 designates the title of the bill as the
``McLoughlin House Addition to Fort Vancouver National Historic
Site Act'' and defines terms used in section 2.
Section 2 authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to
acquire the McLoughlin House and contains necessary
COST AND BUDGETARY CONSIDERATIONS
The following estimate of costs of this measure has been
provided by the Congressional Budget Office:
H.R. 733--McLoughlin House Addition to Fort Vancouver National Historic
H.R. 733 would authorize the National Park Service (NPS) to
acquire the McLoughlin House National Historic Site (NHS) in
Oregon by purchase, donation, or exchange. The site, which
consists of two historic houses, is currently owned and
operated by a nonprofit organization. Upon acquisition, the
site would be administered by the NPS as part of the Fort
Vancouver National Historic Site.
Based on information provided by the NPS and by the
McLoughlin Memorial Association, CBO estimates that
implementing H.R. 733 would cost about $3 million over the next
five years, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts. We
estimate that about $500,000 of this amount would be used to
purchase the two buildings during the next year or two, and
that about $1 million would be spent to repair and restore them
over the following few years. We estimate that the cost of
operating the site as part of the Fort Vancouver NHS would be
about $300,000 annually beginning in 2004 or 2005, also
assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts. Finally, CBO
estimates that an additional $2 million would be spent after
2008 for further renovation and development. Enacting H.R. 773
would not affect direct spending or revenues.
This legislation contains no intergovernmental or private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal
The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Deborah Reis
and Jenny Lin. This estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine,
Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
REGULATORY IMPACT EVALUATION
In compliance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee makes the following
evaluation of the regulatory impact which would be incurred in
carrying out H.R. 733. The bill is not a regulatory measure in
the sense of imposing Government-established standards or
significant economic responsibilities on private individuals
No personal information would be collected in administering
the program. Therefore, there would be no impact on personal
Little, if any, additional paperwork would result from the
enactment of H.R. 733, as ordered reported.
On May 12, 2003, the Committee on Energy and Natural
Resources requested legislative reports from the Department of
the Interior and the Office of Management and Budget setting
forth Executive agency recommendations on H.R. 733. These
reports had not been received at the time the report on H.R.
733 was filed. When the reports become available, the Chairman
will request that they be printed in the Congressional Record
for the advice of the Senate. The testimony provided by the
National Park Service at the Subcommittee hearing follows:
Statement of Sue Masica, Associate Director for Park Planning,
Facilities, and Lands, National Park Service, Department of the
Mr. Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to present the
Department of the Interior's views on S. 601 and H.R. 733,
similar bills that would authorize the Secretary of the
Interior to acquire the McLoughlin House National Historic Site
in Oregon City, Oregon, for inclusion in the Fort Vancouver
National Historic Site in the state of Washington. H.R. 733
passed the House on April 8, 2003.
The Department supports both S. 601 and H.R. 733, if
amended in accordance with this statement. We believe that the
McLoughlin House National Historic Site, which is currently an
affiliated area of the National Park System, would be an
appropriate addition to Fort Vancouver National Historic Site,
but we think that the legislation should be clarified with
respect to the name change that would need to be made to the
McLoughlin House if it is acquired by the National Park
The McLoughlin House is located in Oregon City, Oregon,
southeast of Portland, along the dramatic Willamette River
Falls. It was the home Dr. John McLoughlin built and lived in
from 1847, after his retirement from the Hudson's Bay Company's
operations at Fort Vancouver, until his death in 1857.
John McLoughlin is one of Oregon's most revered historical
figures. Known as the ``Father of Oregon,'' he played a major
role in the transformation of Oregon Country from British-
controlled fur-trapping territory to United States-controlled
agricultural settlement lands in the early to mid 19th Century.
Born in Quebec, McLoughlin moved west, became involved in the
fur trade, and came to preside over the vast territory claimed
by Hudson's Bay Company and its operations headquartered at
Fort Vancouver, in what would become the state of Washington.
McLoughlin served as Chief Factor of Fort Vancouver from 1825
until 1845, and under his leadership the fort became the center
of political, cultural, and commercial activities in the
Pacific Northwest. He was instrumental in maintaining peace
between Great Britain, which claimed the territory, and the
settlers who came to Oregon Country from the United States, and
the Native American tribes in the region.
As the fur trade declined and American settlers began
arriving to settle in Oregon Country in large numbers,
McLoughlin turned his attention to providing aid and supplies
to them. These migrants had reached the end of their arduous
journeys along the Oregon Trail, and many were sick, starving
and ill-equipped to begin a new life. He aided them despite the
Hudson's Bay Company's policy of discouraging agricultural
settlement in the region.
When McLoughlin retired from the Hudson's Bay Company in
1845, he bought land he had claimed for the company across the
Columbia River, in Oregon City, which was beginning to emerge
as a center of industry and commerce. He built an elegant home
where he and his wife Marguerite continued to help new settlers
in need. Because of McLoughlin's generosity, his house became
know as the ``house of many beds.'' After becoming a U.S.
citizen in 1851, McLoughlin became Mayor of Oregon City and
increased his acts of philanthropy throughout the region.
The McLoughlin House has retained its historic integrity as
one of the earliest examples of its architectural style in the
Pacific Northwest. It was moved from its original location
elsewhere in Oregon City nearly a century ago because of
industrial encroachment and now sits on land McLoughlin donated
to Oregon City. The McLoughlin House National Historic Site,
which also includes the home of Dr. Forbes Barclay, an
associate of McLoughlin's, serves as a focal point for
education and tourism in the Portland area and is used to teach
students about the early European settlement of the Pacific
Northwest. The site continues the story that begins at Fort
Vancouver of the settling of Oregon Country facilitated by John
The McLoughlin House was designated a national historic
site in 1941 by the Department of the Interior, making it the
first such site in the western United States. That same year,
the Department entered into a cooperative agreement with the
McLoughlin Memorial Association, which had owned and managed
the site since 1909, for operation of the home. In 1966, the
responsibility for providing assistance to the site was
delegated to Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. The house
and grounds maintenance, as well as curatorial assistance, at
the McLoughlin House is currently provided by staff at Fort
Although we are unaware of any formal action that
designated the McLoughlin House an affiliated area of the
National Park System, the National Park Service has considered
this site one of its affiliated areas for many years because of
the 1941 designation and cooperative agreement. Affiliated
areas are significant properties that are neither federally
owned nor directly administered by the National Park Service
but which receive technical or financial aid from the National
Park Service. Some have been designated as affiliated areas by
Congress; others, like the McLoughlin House, have been
designated national historic sites by the Secretary of the
Interior under the authority of the Historic Sites Act of 1935.
As part of the General Management Plan revision for Fort
Vancouver National Historic Site, the National Park Service
studied the possibility of adding the McLoughlin House National
Historic Site to Fort Vancouver and found that because of the
strong thematic connection to the fort and the feasibility of
managing this unit, it would be an appropriate addition. There
is broad support for this action. The proposal to add the
McLoughlin House to Fort Vancouver National Historic Site was
generated during public scoping meetings on the General
Management Plan held in Oregon City. Support is also evident
from the comments the National Park Service received earlier
this year during the public comment period on the Draft General
Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement. We expect
to finalize the revised General Management Plan by the end of
If S. 601 or H.R. 733 is enacted and funds are made
available for acquisition of the McLoughlin House, the National
Park Service would acquire the site and the contents of the
McLoughlin House and Barclay House. The estimated acquisition
cost of the historic site real property is $445,000. The
furnishings and artifacts from the two houses, estimated to be
worth more than $200,000, would be donated to the National Park
Service by the McLoughlin Historical Association. Oregon City,
which owns the land used for the McLoughlin House site, would
donate a permanent easement to the National Park Service in
order to provide the Service with the access needed for the
management, protection, and public use of the site. A proposal
for this donation, incidentally, was approved through a 2001
referendum supported by more than 80 percent of the Oregon City
voters. We estimate that operation and maintenance of the site
would add $285,000 to Fort Vancouver's approximately $1 million
annual operation and maintenance costs, an increase of about 28
The McLoughlin Memorial Association would continue to play
an important role at the McLoughlin House site. The Association
plans to use most of the proceeds from the sale of the house,
not including a small portion needed to pay off debt, to
establish an endowment fund to assist in the long-term
preservation of the site and development of educational
programs throughout the Portland/Vancouver region. The
Association also plans to pursue private-sector support for
educational programming, site preservation, and other
activities to support the site.
While we support the intent of both bills, we recommend
amending the legislation to ensure that once the McLoughlin
House National Historic Site is added to Fort Vancouver
National Historic Site, the McLoughlin House no longer has
``national historic site'' in its title. We are concerned that
without a clarification in the language, we would be creating a
national historic site within a national historic site. Along
with the clarifying language, we would like the legislation to
reference a revised map for the McLoughlin House. We would be
pleased to work with the committee to amend the bill's
Mr. Chairman, that concludes my testimony. I would be glad
to answer any questions that you may have.
CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW
In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee notes that no
changes in existing law are made by the Act H.R. 733, as