Skip to main content

Travis Cross papers

Identifier: WUA039

Scope and Contents

The Travis Cross papers contain material related to the work Cross did for Mark Hatfield and personal materials that cover the years 1950-2004. Because Cross filled a variety of roles in his work with Oregon Secretary of State and Governor Hatfield, the materials in the collection are wide ranging in scope. Correspondence and memos covering the years 1950-1968 detail campaign strategy, office procedures for the governor’s staff, detailed analysis of contributor approaches, and personal reflections.

Additionally, there are copies of speeches given by Hatfield, campaign materials for the different campaigns Cross worked on for Hatfield, transcripts of talk programs, and audio and visual recordings of interviews and speeches given by Travis Cross.

Materials covering the years 1968-1975 include correspondence with clients Cross worked for as a public relations consultant, his work as a volunteer on the 1972 campaign for President Richard Nixon, and for various Republican fundraising campaigns. Correspondence from this time includes letters from Governor George Romney, Nelson Rockefeller, John Lindsay, and Gerry Frank.


  • 1950-2004


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

These materials are open to researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

Library acts as “fair use” reproduction agent.

For further information, see the section on copyright in the Regulations and Procedures of the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library.

Copyright Information: Before material from collections at Willamette University Archives and Special Collections may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permission. Persons wishing to quote from materials in any collections held by University Archives and Special Collections should consult the University Archivist. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Biographical / Historical

William Travis Cross was born in Salem, Oregon in March 1927. Graduating from North Salem High School in 1944, he went to Stanford University and majored in Political Science but left in 1945 to join the Navy and fight in World War II. Returning to the United States in 1946, he attended Willamette University for two years, then went back to Stanford to complete his Political Science degree in 1949. It was while Cross was studying at Stanford that he met and became friends with Mark Hatfield.

Cross returned to Willamette University in the fall of 1949 to become Director of Information and Alumni Affairs. One year later he moved to Eugene to work as the assistant to the Chancellor of Higher Education, University of Oregon, where he served for seven years.

After Mark Hatfield became the Oregon Secretary of State, Cross joined his staff, serving in various capacities during Hatfield's two years as Secretary of State and eight years as the Governor of Oregon. Cross was Hatfield’s press agent, chief political adviser, legislative liaison, and deputy – to name but a few of his roles during those years.

Cross moved on to do freelance public relations work in 1968 when Hatfield became a United States Senator. Among his clients were George Romney (Governor of Michigan), the United States National Bank, and the Columbia Broadcasting System. In March 1969 Cross joined the University of California as Vice President for University Relations where he served for six years.

Cross and his family moved back to Portland in 1975. For the next seventeen years, he worked in public relations at St. Vincent Hospital, retiring in 1992. Cross battled Parkinson’s disease for over 20 years and died from complications in 2004.


14 Linear Feet (14 boxes)


The Travis Cross papers contain a variety of materials related to the work Cross did for Mark Hatfield as well as personal materials that cover the years 1950-2004.


Materials retain original order whenever possible. Otherwise, materials are arranged in alphabetical or chronological order.

Physical Location

Mark O. Hatfield Library

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Beverly J. Cross, 2006.
Guide to the Travis Cross papers, 1950-2004
Finding aid processed by Rose Marie Walter.
© 2013
Description rules
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Willamette University Archives and Special Collections Collection Descriptions

Mark O. Hatfield Library
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 United States