Editor’s Note: In many respects, this declaration seems to be more one of autonomy rather than secession that would lead to outright independence. Since this declaration is not widely accessible on Internet, it’s uncertain if it represents the views of many (or any) of those seeking to realize the republic, or state (some want a republic, others a state), of Jefferson. This effort apparently began all the way back in 1941, and at first was made up of several southwestern Oregon counties, and then eventually also a number of California counties in the northern part of the state. Formal declaration or no, there has been some actual movement toward independence, with, for instance, the Siskiyou County, CA, board of directors actually voting to secede from California and join with some Oregon counties.

Declaration of Independence by the People of the Free State of Jefferson

WHEREAS, due to over one hundred and fifty years of neglect, disregard and mis-management by the existing state governments of Oregon and California, and due to the need to preserve unparalleled natural resources, including the most scenic seascapes, forests, mountain ranges and farmland on the planet Earth, with the need to guarantee free access for all to wild rivers, forests, beaches and coastlines, 

WE THE PEOPLE of the counties of Curry, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Siskiyou, Modoc, Del Norte, Shasta, Humboldt, Trinity, and Lassen, foreswearing violence in any form, do hereby SECEDE peaceably from the aforesaid States, but not from the United States of America, and hereby DECLARE a government unto ourselves, comprising all assets of the afore-mentioned counties, to be forever known as the State of Jefferson, with its own State Legislature to be duly formed and elected pursuant to a Congress of the People; moreover, 

WE, THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF JEFFERSON, do hereby petition the Legislatures of the States of Oregon and California, and also the Congress of the United States of America, beloved country to whom we remain loyal and steadfast citizens, to accept forthwith and recognize our State of Jefferson as a free and independent State, and as a full member of the United States of America. 



Image source: Christopher Phillips

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