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James W. Loewen (1942-2021)

We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague and remain committed to the work he began.



Basic Information

Type of Place
Independent City or Town
Metro Area
Politics c. 1860?
Don’t Know
Unions, Organized Labor?
Don’t Know

Sundown Town Status

Sundown Town in the Past?
Was there an ordinance?
Don't Know
Don’t Know
Year of Greatest Interest
Still Sundown?
Surely Not

Census Information

The available census data from 1860 to the present
Total White Black Asian Native Hispanic Other BHshld
1920 2701 0
1930 2975
1940 3579 0
1950 4793 0
1960 5072 0
1970 6361
2000 12459 11621 22 69 222 173

Method of Exclusion

  • Threat of Violence
  • Reputation

Main Ethnic Group(s)

  • Unknown

Group(s) Excluded

  • Black


A National Guardsman stationed in Dallas, Oregon in the 1980s writes that a black colleague told him how he was visited by the KKK the night before and not to tell anyone but the 20 foot high cross they burnt in his front yard was accompanied by several voices he recognized from right in the Dallas Unit. He also said that ever since he moved into Dallas, about 3 mounths before, he had received about 10 phone calls and notes on his rented house’s door. The notes and calls he had, up until that time, written off as pranks from teenagers. Something (the pranks) that happened quite a lot in Dallas according to another friend, who had lived in Dallas for 10 plus years. My friend was told by one of the notes that only Salem and Portland might tolerate his kind in this state and to stay 10 miles minimum from any town with a “dragon” for a mascot if he didn’t want to be hanged just for practice by the KKK. He had a white wife and the two of them were still shaking when I went to visit them two months later in Salem where they moved.

Another Dallas resident writes:
“After living in Dallas for about 9 years I have heard some things from long time residents about the bad old days, i.e. the hanging tree in front of the courthouse, the local high school team being named the “Dragons”, and the fact that Dallas was a sundowner town.

email 3/2008

A former recent Dallas resident who said that black people wouldn’t necessarily be run out, but that they would not be made to feel welcome there. The origin of the HS dragon mascot may only be a coincidence, although many residents think it has KKK connections.

Dallas, OR has joined The Inclusive Communities Partnership of the National League of Cities.