From January through June 2018, the Oregon Historical Society was proud to host Racing to Change, presented by the Oregon Black Pioneers. Now, thanks to our partnership with Visiting Media, students and history enthusiasts across Oregon and beyond can experience the exhibit online. This exhibit illuminates Oregon’s vibrant black community and their courage, struggle and progress amongst a larger context of discrimination and displacement during the civil rights movement in Oregon in the 1960’s and 1970’s.
From June 2013 through February 2014, the Oregon Historical Society was proud to showcase Windows on America, the first ever public display of the world-class Mark Family Collection. Now, thanks to a new partnership with Visiting Media, students and history enthusiasts across Oregon and beyond can experience the exhibit online! Visitors to the virtual exhibit can experience the same content offered in the physical exhibit, as well as new digital enhancements. Get up close to artifacts, read text panels, hear recordings of historic documents, and go behind the scenes of some of the exhibit’s treasures in videos with OHS Executive Director Kerry Tymchuk.
Famous for his forceful language and political skill, Governor Tom McCall has remained the name and face of Oregon’s remarkable legacy of environmental lawmaking. His environmental efforts were not the earliest in the state, nor were his achievements his alone; but he provided people with a compelling and ambitious narrative that emphasized citizen responsibility to protect the land and its resources. This narrative continues to inform many aspects of lawmaking and advocacy in Oregon.
Reproductions of hand-tinted glass lantern slides from the early 1930s document how flax was grown and processed to make fabric. The slides from the Oregon Historical Society’s Portland Public School (PPS) Collection were shown to schoolchildren to illustrate various Oregon industries and, in this case, children learned about making towels and napkins at the Oregon Linen Mill in Salem.
The images in this exhibit are scans from the KOIN and KPTV 16mm news film collections held at the Oregon Historical Society (OHS) Research Library. Every three frames of 16mm film represents 1/8 of a second — or just faster than the blink of an eye. These stories represent, in part, the day-to-day events that helped shape Portland from 1969 to 1981.
The photographs in this exhibit show how Portland General Electric (PGE) used photography to promote its business over a span of more than 85 years. The images, all taken from the OHS Research Library, address the way in which PGE used photography to define and promote its various audiences: workers, engineers, managers, and customers.
At the turn of the 19th century, Portland was still the metropolis of the Pacific Northwest, and its buildings reflected a sense of urban grandeur rivaling the great cities of North America. As the twentieth century progressed, many of these buildings fell victim to changing needs, economic imperatives, and a growing decentralization of urban life. While the Oregon Historical Society’s Davies Family Research Library holds thousands of images of lost Portland, few are so evocative of the city’s past grandeur as these postcards, created from re-touched and hand-colored photographs.
The 1920s heralded the era of the Modern Woman, a more adventurous and independent type open to new possibilities. The new exhibit Mirror on the Modern Woman depicts some of these Modern Women, young and old, at work and at play. The exhibit features fifteen photographs from the 1920s and ’30s selected from the Oregon Historical Society Research Library’s collection of negatives from the Oregon Journal newspaper.
Call it the Clearing, Stumptown, City of Roses, P-Town, PDX, Ripcity, Bridgetown, or Little Beirut—Portland answers to them all. The city sits on the Willamette River, both sleepy and overwrought, dominating Oregon in population and voting trends. Obama loved it, George H.W. did not, Teddy Roosevelt slept here, and the Queen of Romania stopped by for dinner.
The people of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde represent almost thirty different tribes and bands that the U.S. government removed to the Grand Ronde Reservation in the nineteenth century. The history of the reservation—and how so many western Oregon Native people came to reside there—is long and complex. With support from the Spirit Mountain Community Fund, the Oregon Historical Society is working with scholars in an ongoing effort to create Oregon Encyclopedia entries on the people, places, and events connected to the history of the Grand Ronde people. Included in this new online exhibit are recently published entries by E.A. Schwartz, Kenneth Ames, David Lewis, Robert T. Boyd, Henry Zenk, William Lang, Dan Boxberger, Yvonne Hadja, and Chuck Williams. OHS archival material connected to the history of the Grand Ronde have been digitized and published on the OHS digital history websites.
In many ways, the story of Fred G. Meyer and Fred Meyer, Inc. mirrors the story of the expansion and development of the city of Portland from a small, rugged, Western town to a booming metropolis. Follow the story of Fred Meyer from its humble beginnings to its expansion across the West.