History Pub

Developed by Holy Names Heritage Center, History Pub is a collaborative program of the Heritage Center, Oregon Historical Society, and McMenamins. Programs feature a presentation by an expert from fields including history, journalism, and women's studies. Whenever possible, individuals who participated in or were affected by the events share their memories as part of the program. The voices of historical participants add a unique perspective to the discussion of these important issues.

History Pub is designed to increase public understanding of historical events that have shaped the past and their continued implications for the present and future. The series explores lesser-known historical events and the important roles minority groups have played in the Northwest and encourages participants to consider the ways social, cultural, and political forces affect individuals, communities and physical places.

The series is held at the historic McMenamins' Kennedy School in northeast Portland. Where else can you hear fascinating history while enjoying a slice of pizza and a frosty pint of handcrafted ale? History Pub appeals to a broad audience and is also family-friendly. This innovative program typically draws a crowd of 150 people each month.

World War II Veterans Tell Their Stories

May 18, 2015 at 7pm (one week early!)

Paul Meyer served in the US Army 70th Division "Trailblazers" unit from Oregon as a machine gunner. He fought in the "Operation Nordwind," the southern part of the Battle of the Bulge, was injured and carried out on a stretcher, and eventually was taken to recover in a hospital in England. Art Sorenson fought with the 104th Infantry Division as part of the second Allied advance across France, Belgium, and into Germany. He experienced fixed bayonet combat and spent time as a prisoner of war. Sorenson was awarded a Purple Heart, Silver Star Medal, and two Bronze Star Medals. Ellen Johnson Thronson, RN, served in the United States Navy Nurse Corps at the Puget Sound Navy Yard and the Naval Air Station in San Diego. After completing special training in psychiatric nursing, she worked in hospital psychiatric departments caring for combat veterans suffering from "battle fatigue."

Coffee Adventures From The Rose City: Portland's Pioneer Roasters to Today's Craft Coffee Movement

April 27, 2015 at 7pm

April's program features an exclusive talk by and with Portland's foremost coffee industry experts. An introductory presentation will be followed by a Q&A in which the audience can talk with the people who have made Portland's successful coffee industry what it is today. Free coffee samples, provided by the Oregon Coffee Board. Speakers include Kelsey Mutter, Martyn Leaper, Michael Boyd, Dan Welch, Brian Dibble and Bruce Miletto. Mark Stell will serve as moderator.

"Night Life: Clubs, Restaurants and the Music"

March 30, 2015 at 7pm

Explore the vibrant music and night life in Portland's African American community during the 1940s and 1950s through first-person accounts. Speakers include Ben Johnson, Bill Rutherford and Jim Thompson. This program is presented in collaboration with a special exhibit at the Oregon Historical Society, A Community on the Move: Black Portland during the 1940s and 1950s. This month's History Pub is organized in partnership with Oregon Black Pioneers.

Rethinking the Columbia River Treaty: Will We Get the Future Right This Time?

February 23 at 7pm

The Columbia River Treaty of the 1960s between the United States and Canada is perhaps the classic example of a "benefits-sharing" international river treaty. Canada built three large storage reservoirs in the upstream portion of the Columbia River Basin, and for fifty years, the two nations have cooperated in system operations to provide flood control and power generation benefits downstream. Even so, the people who negotiated the Treaty designed it for a particular future, and the future turned out much different than expected. An opportunity to rethink this arrangement has arisen because of provisions in the Treaty. Representatives of the two nations need to ask themselves again: Are there new ways to cooperate on the Columbia River and bring greater total benefits to the people of the region?

John Shurts is General Counsel for Northwest Power and Conservation Council, and his recent work has included speaking and publishing on the Treaty. He has a PhD in American History from the University of Oregon as well as a law degree from the Lewis and Clark Law School.

C.E.S. Wood: Romancing Freedom

January 26, 2015 at 7pm

Soldier, attorney, poet, raconteur, artist and art patron, Charles Erskine Scott Wood was one of Oregon's most colorful citizens. A friend of Chief Joseph, Clarence Darrow, Emma Goldman, and Mark Twain, Wood's romance with freedom made him a passionate defender of civil liberties and a leading progressive voice of early 20th Century America. Wood left a profound, enlightening, and controversial legacy on Portland and the West Coast. The presentation includes a screening of the Oregon Experience film C.E.S. Wood. Presented by Laurence Cotton, historian, filmmaker and co-producer of C.E.S. Wood and Tim Barnes, poet and co-editor of Woodworks, The Life and Writings of Charles Erskine Scott Woods.

The Journey of the Pickathon Music Festival: Past, Present and Future

November 17, 2014 at 7pm

Pickathon founder Zale Schoenborn will discuss how exploring the nexus of art, design, community, sustainability and media came together to create something wholly unique in the world of contemporary music festivals.

Note: program is one week earlier due to Thanksgiving.

Economic Phoenix: A.B. Hammond, the Panic of 1893 and the Astoria and Columbia River Railroad

October 27, 2014 at 7pm

Greg Gordon is an assistant professor of Environmental Studies at Gonzaga University, having received his PhD in History from the University of Montana. His latest book, Money Does Grow on Trees:
A. B. Hammond and the Age of the Timber Baron explores the ecological costs of frontier capitalism. Although reviled in his home state, Montana businessman and railroad builder, A. B. Hammond was regarded as a hero in Oregon upon his completion of the long-awaited Astoria and Columbia River Railroad. This presentation will focus on Hammond's railroad and lumber enterprises activity in Oregon at the turn-of-the-century and how he turned one of the nation's worst depressions to his advantage.

"Behind the Curve: History, Science and the Politics of Global Warming"

September 29, 2014 at 7pm

In 1958, Charles David Keeling began measuring the concentration of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii. His project kicked off a half century of research that has expanded our knowledge of climate change immeasurably. Nevertheless, global society has yet to find the real solutions to the problem of global warming. Reed College professor of History and Environmental Studies Joshua P. Howe shows how exploring the history of global warming fom its roots as a scientific curiosity to its place at the center of modern environmentalism can help us to understand what has gone wrong in the national and international politics of global warming and how Oregonians have begun to buck this trend to do things right.