The Peony Farm in Oregon, which opened in the 1980s as a popular destination for peony lovers, was among a number of properties that fell under the influence of white supremacists, according to the Oregon Department of Justice.
The DOJ announced Thursday that it has begun investigating the farm, which it labeled a symbol “of white supremacy.”
Peonies, which are a native to Europe, are also grown on Oregon’s Eastern Oregon coast.
In 2013, Oregon Gov.
Kate Brown signed a law requiring the state to provide peonies to Oregon State University to provide for the study of the genetic makeup of the species.
Brown’s bill also prohibits the use of peonies in any kind of marketing, advertising or trade, including for cosmetic purposes.
The Oregon Department Of Agriculture said in a statement that the farm was “a symbol of our state’s history of white supremacist activity, including a number that were owned and operated by the KKK.”
The farm’s owner, Robert E. Brown, who died in 2013, was known to the FBI for his anti-Semitism and racist statements.
In a 2014 interview with The New York Times, Brown said, “It’s just a question of how you make a living.
I don’t want a Jewish owner, but I do want a Jew-owned farm.
It’s just the way we live our lives here.”