Biographical Sketch of Asa Lovejoy

Portrait of Asa L. Lovejoy

Signature of Asa L. Lovejoy

Asa L. Lovejoy 

Born 1808 
Died 1882 
Clackamas County delegate

Asa Lawrence Lovejoy was born in Groton, Massachusetts, on March 14, 1808. He attended both Cambridge and Amherst colleges. He studied law and was admitted to the bar.

Lovejoy came to Oregon in 1842​ where he practiced law in Oregon City. He had a land claim along the Willamette River, and in 1845, with Francis W. Pettygrove, laid out sixteen blocks as a town site. He and Pettygrove then engaged in a famous coin toss to determine the name of the city. Lovejoy lost the toss, thus the city was given the name Portland rather than Boston.

He was the mayor of Oregon City in 1845, and an adjutant general in the Cayuse War of 1847-48. Lovejoy served in the provisional legislature from 1844 to 1848. In 1849, he served as speaker of the house and in 1851 he was elected a member of the council (senate) and a representative from 1854-56.

Lovejoy was a delegate from Clackamas County to the constitutional convention serving on the Committee on the Legislative Department and as chair of the Committee on Boundaries.

He remained active in numerous business interests until his death on Sept. 10, 1882.