Emily & Vic Logan Fund

Victor “Vic” Logan was born in Emmett, Idaho, on September 20, 1901. The last of four children of William John Logan and Elizabeth Jane Milligan, he attended schools in Boise, Idaho, and Umatilla, Oregon. The first of his family to enter college, Vic worked his way through Willamette University, graduating in 1924 with high scholastic honors and track records that were not bested for forty years. Emily Harris Price Logan, born in Worcester, Massachusetts on December 28, 1903, was the third of five children of Wayland Gorham Price and Minerva Evans Trafford. She graduated from Northfield Academy and first taught at the House of the Pines in Norton, Massachusetts. After further teaching, Emily became director of the Olivia James Settlement House in South Boston. This facility offered education and recreation for new immigrants, the poor, and the unemployed, addressing social needs still familiar today.

Emily and Vic with daughter Allison upon her graduation from Corvallis High School in 1948.
Emily and Vic with daughter Allison upon her graduation from Corvallis High School in 1948.

In 1928, Vic and Emily married in Westport, Massachusetts. Pursuing graduate studies, Vic achieved a master’s and Ph.D. in organic chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1938. He earned these degrees and supported a growing family by teaching and coaching basketball at Milton Academy in Massachusetts. Following his doctoral work, Vic began a career in higher education in the chemistry department of Eastern Oregon College of Education. In LaGrande he also directed the Civilian Pilot Training Program. Many of his students flew in World War II, and he soon felt compelled to serve, so in 1942 joined the United States Navy as a lieutenant. With her husband overseas in World War II, she moved with her family to live with her sister in New Jersey and work for the Bakelite Corporation.

After military duty and two years in the South Pacific, often being “Pops” to younger squadron members, the Logan family returned to Corvallis where Vic joined the faculty at Oregon State College. He taught chemistry for twenty-two years, co-authored a standard textbook, and retired a full professor. His former students often recalled his influence on them to seek public service careers. Throughout his years in Corvallis, Vic was energetically involved in many interests. These included his founding of the Naval Reserve Research Unit, participating in Sigma Xi honorary society, originating summer institutes for science teachers from across the country, and working for the NAACP and for Democratic precincts. He retired as a captain from the Naval Reserve, then joined the Retired Officers Club of Corvallis.

Emily worked to extend the influence of the Red Cross and Junior Red Cross, a dancing school, and other community improvement programs. She was a founder and president of the League of Women Voters in Corvallis, two-term president of the Oregon League, and a member of the Benton County Committee on Youth and Children. Her political interests were diverse. Named by Governors Douglas McKay and Paul Patterson to their committees on prisons and parole, she ran for the state legislature in 1958. Her candidacy was ahead of Benton County’s readiness for a female Democratic representative, but her courage and capabilities opened opportunities for other women to gain office locally and elsewhere in Oregon. Appointed as a public member of the State Industrial Accident Commission by Governor Mark Hatfield, Emily was later asked by Governor Tom McCall to serve on the Planning Committee on Vocational Rehabilitation. She was a long term Democrat and precinct person, appointed by four Republicans to serve the state, and was elected an alternate delegate to the 1968 Democratic National Convention. These public endeavors were honored by Theta Sigma Chi when they named her among the Women of Achievement for 1960. In 1969 Emily received the Oregon State Employees Association Distinguished Service Award for more than forty-four years of service to her community, government, and co-workers. The Emily Logan Democratic Women’s Club was later named on her behalf.

In 1954, Emily and Vic embarked overseas to teach at Kasetsart University in Bangkok, Thailand, where they both worked with Thai students and faculty as Kasetsart grew into one of Thailand’s leading institutions. Returning to Corvallis two years later, they continued the Thai connection, welcoming countless Thai visitors into their home for meals and parties, eventually greeting the sons and daughters of earlier Thai friends.

Emily died May 24, 1976, leaving a legacy of rare standards of excellence and faith in the effectiveness of citizen participation. Following Emily’s death, Vic endeavored to continue family and friend relationships through travel and correspondence while living at Samaritan Village in Corvallis. He toured the Soviet Union with OSU alumni, visited his daughters Allison Logan Belcher in Portland and Betty Jane Logan Narver in Seattle, celebrated the bicentennial events by an east coast trip, and delighted in his six grandchildren, seeing two of them graduate from college. To keep in touch with a wide circle of his and Emily’s friends, he wrote Christmas letters to more than 125 people.

Vic died on Christmas Day, 1986. His family and friends felt it was appropriate to establish the Vic and Emily Logan Scholarship in their honor. This scholarship reflects their beliefs in good citizenship, government, and equality of all individuals. Their affection, humor, compassion, and joyful zest also deserve commemoration. Each year this scholarship is therefore offered to assist a graduating senior of Corvallis High School who displays a notable interest in American history, foreign affairs, or the political process, to further his or her studies at any higher education institute in Oregon.

Donate to the Emily & Vic Logan Fund