Stumptown Stories

Meet us downtown for The OE's new public history series in Portland at the historic Rialto Poolroom and Bar. Free and open to the public; must be 21 or over.

A.E. Doyle“The Portland of A.E. Doyle.”
Presented by Philip Niles
In collaboration with the Architectural Heritage Center

Tuesday, December 13, 2011
7:30 p.m.
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave
Free and open to the public. Must be 21 or over.

Architect A.E. Doyle left his mark on Portland. The Benson Hotel, Civic Stadium, Meier and Frank, the Pacific Building—these structures and dozens more are reminders of Portland’s rapid growth in the early 20th century and, significantly, how architectural design during that period identified and legitimized institutions and the social structure of the growing city. Historian Phil Niles examines the stages of Doyle’s development as an architect, the evolution of his style, and how his career reflected—and furthered—Portland’s growth.

Philip Niles is a professor of History Emeritus at Carleton College, where he taught for thirty-three years on the history of Europe between the Fall of Rome and the Renaissance. He grew up in Milwaukie and returned to the Portland area after retirement. He has since turned his research talents to the history of the Clatsop Indians, A.E. Doyle, and early 20th century Portland. He is the author of Beauty of the City: A.E. Doyle, Portland’s Architect and is currently working on a book about Portland’s early merchants he calls “The Dinner Party.”
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Past Stumptown Stories

 

tom burns"Tom Burns: the Most Arrested Man in Portland"
Presented by Peter Sleeth

Tuesday, November 8
7:30 pm
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave, Portland

Free and open to the public
Must be 21 or over.

The watch shop and bookery on SW Fourth and Ankeny, just off Burnside in downtown Portland, was a popular gathering place for the city’s more radical residents during the early 20th century. Its proprietor, Tom Burns, held meetings in the basement for his friends and fellow Socialists, reacting against the economic inequalities that plagued the country. Tom Burns walked his talk: he wrote pamphlets, letters, and newspaper articles; held speeches, strikes, and rallies; and was regularly arrested for his efforts, leading to his title: the Most Arrested Man in Portland. Reporter Peter Sleeth, whose family knew Burns, brings insight to this dynamic and largely unremembered Portland radical.
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Strike"Real Class Warfare: The Great 1934 Longshore Strike in Portland."
Presented by Michael Munk

Tuesday, October 11
7:30 pm
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave, Portland
Free and open to the public
Must be 21 or over.

On May 9, 1934, thousands of longshoremen along the West Coast walked off the job, beginning an eighty-two-day standoff between the International Longshoreman’s Association (ILA) and company owners. In Portland, the strike split the city in two: sympathetic citizens rallied around the workers, offering food, shelter, and transportation; those opposed to the strike—including Henry Corbett, Amedee Smith, and Henry Cabell—formed the Citizens Emergency Committee and called on President Roosevelt to stop the strike with federal troops. Michael Munk, political scientist and local expert on radicalism in Oregon, sets the stage for one of the most important strikes in 20th-century Oregon and examines how the determination of thousands of men and their supporters in 1934 influenced the shape and strength of unions in the years to follow.
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revolutions Rural Revolution: Lesbian Intentional Communities in Southern Oregon”
Presented by Heather Burmeister

Tuesday, September 13
7:30 p.m.
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave

Free and open to the public. Must be 21 or over.

In the 1970s, hundreds of intentional communities claimed Oregon as home, including numerous lesbian separatist communities. Communities with names like WomanShare, Rootworks, and Cabbage Lane dotted the landscape along the I-5 corridor between Portland and San Francisco. Their goals included the complete disruption and change in the patriarchal system, and the creation of a sustainable egalitarian feminist community. Heather Burmeister will present her interviews with women involved in this utopian effort and examine the reasons why women left their homes in Portland and other urban areas as part of the back-to-the-land movement, how the experience changed them, and what they brought back with them to the city.
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equi poster“The Stormy Petrel of Portland”: the story of Dr. Marie Equi
Presented by Heather Mayer

Tuesday, August 23
7:30 p.m.
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave

Free and open to the public. Must be 21 or over.

Among the many fascinating people in Portland’s Progressive Era history, Dr. Marie Equi stands out. She was a suffragist, an advocate for labor rights, and a vocal political agitator against World War I, imperialism, and profiteering. As a medical doctor, she treated mostly women and children in the Portland working-class neighborhoods—often for free—and was one of the few Portland physicians to provide birth control and abortions. She was also openly gay—a fact that came up in her indictment by the federal government for “sedition” for her anti-war activities when the U.S. prosecutor called her an “unsexed woman.” Heather Mayer presents the story of this remarkable woman and her influence on one of the most politically charged periods in Portland history—and on the health and well-being of our city’s early labor class residents.

Heather Mayer is a part-time instructor at Portland Community College, and is currently working on
her dissertation, “Beyond the Rebel Girl: Women and the Industrial Workers of the World in the Pacific
Northwest, 1905-1924.”
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mercer poster

“Craftsman Style and the Great Boom—Building Portland’s Classic Arts & Crafts Neighborhood in the Early 20th Century”
Presented by Jim Heuer and Robert Mercer

Tuesday, August 9
7:30 p.m.
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave

Free and open to the public. Must be 21 or over.

Portland’s population and wealth exploded in the years immediately after the Lewis and Clark Exposition of 1905, and style-conscious citizens turned to local architects to bring “modern” ideas to life in the new streetcar neighborhoods stretching out from downtown. The result of this creative work can be seen in the rich trove of surviving Arts & Crafts era homes in the neighborhoods of Irvington, Piedmont, Willamette Heights, Laurelhurst, and Ladd’s Addition. The lecture will be illustrated with the presenters’ collection of both historic and modern photographs of these homes and their interiors. (This program was previously presented at the Architectural Heritage Center.)

Jim Heuer and Robert Mercer bought an Emil Schacht-designed Craftsman Style home in 1999, which launched them on a journey of discovery revealing the rich treasure of Craftman and Arts & Crafts Style residences in Portland. They have identified hundreds of previously unattributed works by local architects like Emil Schacht, Joseph Jacobberger, and Alfred Faber, all pioneers in Craftsman and other period styles. They are active in Portland’s Architectural Heritage Center where they have lectured on these and other architects of the period. Jim has written articles for American Bungalow Magazine and is a regular photographic contributor to articles and websites on homes of the period.
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L&C“The rich fruits of human effort”: Portland’s 1905 World’s Fair and its Rose Festival Legacy
Presented by Dr. Carl Abbott

Tuesday, June 21, 7:30
Rialto Poolroom and Bar
529 SW 4th Ave
Portland

“Shall not Portland have her feast of Roses?”

For a little over three summer months in 1905, the city of Portland hosted the Lewis & Clark Exposition, a World’s Fair designed to promote the city’s and state’s economic and cultural opportunities. Over a million and a half visitors walked the elaborate grounds in Northwest Portland, visiting exhibits like the Palace of Agriculture and the impressive Forestry Building—a 72-foot-high, 200-foot-long structure made entirely of unpeeled Douglas-fir. The story of Portland’s Exposition tells us much about the civic goals of its planners and how their efforts that summer affected the cultural, social, and economic development of Portland and the state, including the woman’s suffrage movement, massive irrigation projects, international trade, and the “progress” implied by the pioneering spirit of the state’s non-Native settlers. None of the buildings from the Exposition remain and the landscape has dramatically changed, but at least one legacy from the Fair has stayed with us for over 100 years: the Portland Rose Festival. Join Dr. Carl Abbott, an expert on the Lewis and Clark Exposition, and learn more about the origins of one of Portland’s most colorful traditions.

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