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.

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.

Workers in the Wine Industry: Stories of the Labor that Supports one of Oregon's Most Successful Industries

August 25, 2014 at 7PM

Workers in vineyards and cellars provide the labor that is necessary to craft Oregon's internationally recognized wines. As in other agricultural industries, many of those laborers are of Latino heritage, including many recent immigrants to the United States. Two people intimately involved with the work that makes Oregon wines truly remarkable will offer first-person accounts about their work. Jesus Guillén followed his father from Mexico to the Oregon vineyards in 2002, falling in love with the state on arrival. Beginning as a vineyard worker, he quickly began to learn English and study winemaking, working his way up to become Head Winemaker of White Rose Estate in 2008. Leda Garside had worked in community health for many years when she joined Tuality Healthcare in 1992. As she began to focus more of her work on migrant health care, leaders in the local wine industry were exploring ways to better serve the healthcare needs of vineyard workers. They hired Leda to run the fledgling ¡Salud! program in 1997, and she continues in the role today, providing health care to thousands of workers and families that make Oregon's award-winning wines possible. In addition to the presentations, information about the Oregon Wine History Archive at Linfield College will be available. This program is offered in collaboration with the Oregon Historical Society's summer exhibit Clink! A Taste of Oregon Wine.

Foodlandia: How Portland Cooked Up America's Most Original Food City

July 28, 2014 at 7PM

How did a place called Stumptown rise as America's great new food city? Portland Monthly food critic and author Karen Brooks was the first to identify the "Portland food school," a scene of spirited chefs, dogged farmers, plucky innovators and adventurous diners all in it together. Their inspiring philosophy, pioneering entrepreneurial models, and surprising rise-to-stardom stories run through her restaurant reviews and ninth book, The Mighty Gastropolis: A Journey Through America's New Food Culture. Karen will chronicle the rise of a citythat defied the gods of gastronomy and why it matters.

The Camp Without a Fence: Nikkei Farm Laborers in Malheur County During WWII

June 30, 2014 at 7PM

On May 20, 1942, the War Relocation Authoritygranted permission for 400 Japanese and Japanese Americans to move from the Portland Assembly Center to Malheur County, Oregon, to provide critical labor for that year's sugar beet crop, which numbered more than 12,000 acres. From May until October, the majority who volunteered for beet labor were housed in a Farm Security Administration tent camp, just outside the town of Nyssa, on the Snake River. It was the first such labor camp created during the World War II incarceration of Nikkei. By the end of 1945, thousands, nearly 12 percent of the 120,000 incarcerated during the war, worked in the beet fields across the Pacific Northwest and Rocky Mountain states. Speaker Morgen Young is a consulting historian and the project director for "Uprooted: Japanese American Farm Labor Camps During World War II," a traveling exhibition sponsored by the Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission.