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.

Portland's Black Belt: Motives and Means in Albina Real Estate, 1940-1990

May 22, 2017 7PM

NOTE: This program is one week early due to Memorial Day!

In 1960, Portland was the second-most segregated city on the West Coast, behind Los Angeles. Four of five Black residents lived in the Albina District. This presentation explores how the real estate industry, public officials, and citizens justified that spatial segregation. It traces the private- and public-sector mechanisms utilized to confine and re-shape Black settlement within Albina. A major motive for segregation was to enable financial exploitation of Black homeowners and renters, allowing housing-industry manipulators to extract wealth from the Black community.

Dr. Karen J. Gibson is an Associate Professor in the Nohad A. Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University. Her scholarship seeks to answer questions about the political economy of racial economic inequality in the urban setting.

Stories of Resistance to Japanese American Incarceration and Discrimination

March 27, 2017 7PM

In recognition of the seventy-fifth anniversary of Franklin Roosevelt’s Executive Order 9066, which sent 120,000 Japanese Americans to incarceration camps until after the conclusion of World War II, and the second annual Minoru Yasui Day, this program offers stories of those who stood against the incarceration and the racism faced by many Japanese Americans after the war. George Nakata grew up in Portland’s Nihonmachi and was incarcerated at Minidoka as a child. In his adulthood, Mr. Nakata has become a trusted story-teller, sharing many stories of incarceration from the community. Linda Tamura will highlight some of the Hood River, Oregon, residents who supported their Japanese American neighbors in the face of aggressive discrimination they faced after the war. We will read personal letters and proclamations from Oregonians to Governor Sprague in 1941 and 1942, both advocating for and resisting the exclusion and incarceration of Oregonian Japanese Americans.

On view will be Architecture of Internment: The Buildup to Wartime Incarceration, a traveling exhibit about the role of Oregonians in the decision to incarcerate Japanese Americans during World War II curated by Anne Galisky (Graham Street Productions).

Is Portland Ready for the Big One?Portland's Past and Future Earthquakes

February 27, 2017 7PM

In the Pacific Northwest of the United States, the Juan de Fuca plate is being subducted under the North American Plate at the Cascadia Subduction Zone. The lecture will discuss the hazards of and the preparedness for ground shaking, liquefaction, landslides, and tsunamis along the subduction zone. What are the differences of recurrence intervals for large earthquakes on the northern and southern margins?

Much of the region was not thought to be an earthquake region so earthquake building standards are fairly recent. How does the chance of crustal, plate, and subduction quakes affect building codes, emergency preparedness, siting of critical facilities, building of bridges, and transportation corridors in the region? What have we learned from recent subduction quakes around the world that can be applied to the Pacific Northwest? What can the region expect after a large quake?

More Than Reading, Writing and Arithmetic: the Former Oregon School for the Blind

January 30, 2017 7PM

Oregon School for the Blind operated in Salem, OR, from 1873 until 2009. Join us for a lively exploration of the history of this residential, State-run school and its specialized programming. Discover why OSB was so influential on its evolving student population and learn about its controversial closing. Panelists include Libby Provost, historian and curator of the exhibit "Oregon School for the Blind", historian Sara Paulson and Oregon School for the Blind alumnus Don Mitchell.

Libby Provost is a public historian and curator of the exhibit “Oregon School for the Blind.” Libby has worked as a historic preservation consultant in Portland, OR, for nine years, specializing in historic preservation and oral history. A third-generation Oregonian, she is currently employed as an architectural historian with Historical Research Associates, Inc.

Jumping Into Fire in 1945: Black Paratroopers in the Pacific Northwest

November 28, 2016 7PM

In 1945, an elite unit of the Army’s best trained paratroopers arrived at Pendleton Field as part of a highly classified mission, Operation Firefly. The all-black unit spent the next several months jumping and fighting forest fires throughout the Pacific Northwest. One of the “Triple Nickles” died on a fire jump near Roseburg, the first smokejumper to die in the line of duty. These men gained military fame as the first all-black “Airborne Infantry Firefighters.” Theirs is a unique story of patriotism, race, and service.

Speaker Robert Bartlett is a Vietnam War veteran and the son of Walter Bartlett, Sr., a WWII Army Air Corps veteran. Bob has nearly 30 years of university teaching and presentation experience. He holds a B.A. in Sociology from Colorado Mesa University, a M.A. in Sociology from Washington State University, and a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies from Gonzaga University. Bob is currently a Senior Lecturer at Eastern Washington University in the Department of Sociology/Justice Studies and serves on the Humanities Washington Speakers Bureau. He is an Associate Member of the National Smokejumpers Assoc. and the 555th Parachute Infantry Association, the “Triple Nickles.”

Harmony and Hysteria: Azalea Peet, Margaret Peppers and the Japanese American Camps of WWII

October 24, 2016 at 7pm (one week earlier than usual!)

United by a common dedication to education and social welfare in the realm of organized religion, Azalea Peet of Gresham and Margaret Peppers of Seattle found their convictions challenged amid the rising tide of anti-Japanese sentiment in the months after Pearl Harbor.

When the House Select Committee Investigating National Defense Migration held its hearings in Portland in February, 1942, Peet was the only person to speak out on moral grounds against the forced removal of west coast Japanese Americans. A few months later, Episcopal Deaconess Margaret Peppers accompanied her incarcerated congregation as it moved from Camp Harmony in the Seattle outskirts to Camp Minidoka in Idaho. Eventually, Azalea Peet lived and served in a farm labor camp populated by Japanese Americans in Nyssa, Oregon, while working there with women and children as part of a federated church ministry. In her own way, each woman demonstrated courage in the face of frequently hostile public opinion.

National Park Roads: A Legacy in the American Landscape

September 26, 2016 7PM

U.S. National Park Service roads have made national wonders and historic sites available for generations of visitors. National parks roads determine what most people see and how they see it, but parks road development epitomizes the central challenge of national park management: balancing preservation and access in America’s most treasured landscapes. While the roads have been celebrated for providing access to many of America’s breathtaking landscapes, they have also been criticized for bringing pollution into the wilderness. Dr. Tim Davis, National Park Service historian, highlights the unique qualities of parks roads, details the factors influencing their development, and shows how debates about when, where, how, and why to construct them helped determine the nature and meaning of America’s national parks. Of special interest to local audiences, he explores the Historic Columbia River Highway’s influence on national park road design. The centennial of the National Park Service is August 25, 2016, making this year an ideal opportunity to reflect on the breathtaking natural wonders across our nation.


Keeping Unity in the Community: Portland's Good in the Hood Festival, Its Motivation and Achievements

August 29, 2016 7PM

Good in the Hood is an annual North Portland multicultural festival established in 1995 by community leaders, musicians and staff of the Holy Redeemer Catholic School. Amidst a backdrop of elevated gang activity, its mission was to bring together residents, businesses and organizations throughout the city to engage in great music, food and resources and promote unity among neighbors and neighborhoods. Good in the Hood held its 21st annual event this past June.

A panel discussion with founders & key organizers of this iconic annual multicultural event featuring:

Sister Jane Hibbard, standout principal, Holy Redeemer Catholic School and community builder extraordinaire

Norman Sylvester, aka The Boogie Cat, Oregon Music Hall of Fame blues & soul guitarist, singer, and composer

Stew Dodge, legendary Portland concert sound man and musician

Adrianna Carr, Development Director, Sisters of the Holy Names and a master of bringing ideas to life