The Willamette Valley (/[invalid input: 'ɨ'][invalid input: 'ɨ']/) is a 150-mile (240 km) long valley in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. The entire valley is in the state of Oregon. The valley contains the political and cultural areas of Oregon. It is home to about 70 percent of its population.  This includes Portland, its largest city, and Salem, the state capital. The Willamette River flows the entire length of the valley. The valley is surrounded by mountains on three sides - the Oregon Coast Range to the west, the Cascade Range to the east, and the Calapooya Mountains to the south.
The valley's many waterways are important to the economy of Oregon. They continuously put highly fertile alluvial soils on the valley's broad, flat plain. The valley was widely publicized in the 1820s as a 'promised land of flowing milk and honey'. Throughout the 19th century it was the destination for the oxen-drawn wagon trains of people on the Oregon Trail.
References[change | change source]
- William G Loy; James E. Meacham; Aileen R Buckley; et al., Atlas of Oregon, 2nd Edition (Eugene, OR: University of Oregon, 2001), p. 35
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