From ONE Archives Collection: The personal papers of W. Dorr Legg are now available for researchers By Michael Oliveira
W. Dorr Legg's papers primarily document his life before the existence of ONE, Inc. The papers include Legg's writings, correspondence, and records from Legg's careers as a landscape designer, professor at Oregon State, and as a Christian Science practitioner. After graduating college simultaneously earning a Bachelor of Music in piano and a Master of Landscape Design degrees, he moved to New York. While he lived in White Plains, New York, 1933-1935, he served on the board of the Church of Christ, Scientist, and chaired the Lecture Committee. He also joined the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). After he relocated to Oregon as a professor of Landscape Design at Oregon State University, he contributed to the creation of a Christian Science group for the students, a local chapter of the ASLA, a committee to improve the landscaping of the college, and a regular tour of local gardens. He also helped establish a Christian Science Church in Corvallis, Oregon, and became a Christian Science practitioner.
During World War II, the college's plummeting enrollment and his father's failing health necessitated his return to Michigan. Legg cared for his father and assisted in the management of the family business until his father's death in 1949. Freed from his duty to family, Legg sought a more tolerant environment to live without being harassed for his homosexuality and his relationship with Marvin Edwards, who is African American. He and Edwards relocated to Los Angeles where they enjoyed the more progressive climate and dynamic social life. When Edwards returned east after being unable to find suitable employment, Legg met Merton Bird. Together they formed the Knights of the Clock, an interracial community organization that survived for a few years in the early 1950s. Legg would go onto join the Mattachine Society and become one of the founders of ONE, Inc.
Included in his collection are Legg, Crosby, and Cross family papers and photographs dating back to the mid-nineteenth century along with Legg's and John Nojima's personal photographs. Their photographs document their lives from after they met in 1960 to Legg's death in 1994.