Baker City, Oregon
Gloria Brothers, 78, of Newberg died Friday, Aug. 23, 2002, at her home.
Attrell’s Funeral Home of Newberg was in charge of arrangements with inurnment in Valley View Memorial Park in Newberg.
Mrs. Brothers was born Nov. 1, 1923, in Port Angeles, Wash., the daughter of Evah and Edgar C. Newall. The family resettled in the Newberg area where landmarks like Newall Road and others record the family’s influence in the community.
After graduation from high school in Vancouver, Wash., she attended the University of Oregon to obtain a degree in English. She was a member of Delta Delta Delta sorority.
She married Samuel A. Brothers Dec. 16, 1945, in Newberg. After a year in Roanoke, Va., during which she taught English at the National College, they returned to Newberg to establish a hardwood floor contracting business. In 1953, Mrs. Brothers joined the Newberg Graphic newspaper where she served as society editor until 1957.
For the next three years, she and her husband were active miners on gold claims in Baker County, after which her husband began a long career in the pressroom of The Oregonian in Portland. In 1964, Mrs. Brothers rejoined the Newberg Graphic as assistant to the publisher, a post she held until 1983.
Still an ardent miner, she joined Western Consolidated Mines Inc. of Baker City in 1986, serving as vice president, corporate secretary and member of its board of directors. For many years until her death she maintained dual residences in Sumpter and Newberg. She traversed many miles of mining land in the Blue Mountains on foot and had an unswerving love and respect for the land.
Although Mrs. Brothers enjoyed homemaking, she was much more comfortable in hiking boots than house slippers.
And though she could fill a room with laughter, her more serious side was marked by dedication to the plight of those she saw as bullied by bureaucracy. Always diplomatic, she left no doubt in people’s minds about her opinions on issues affecting the small-scale miner and state and federal abuse of individual rights.
It was her perceived need to bring an organized presence into the political and judicial arenas that led her to become a co-founder of the Eastern Oregon Mining Association, which she served for many years as an officer and board member. Chuck Chase, executive director of EOMA and a longtime association colleague of Mrs. Brothers, termed her death “an immeasurable loss” to the organization.
Chase recalled that when federal authorities banned cabins on mining claims, it was Mrs. Brothers who took up the fight. Brothers vs. U.S. Secretary of the Interior, although unsuccessful in federal court, gave notice that miners were ready to defend their rights, Chase said.
Mrs. Brothers also was an active member in the American Association of University Women and a member of Sixth Church of Christ, Scientist in Portland.
Mrs. Brothers is survived by a son, Ladd Brothers of Newberg; a daughter, Brooke Mill of Gautier, Miss.; and a brother, Edgar Newall of Baker City.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Samuel, in 1994.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, September 13, 2002
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor