Kenneth R. Coleman

Kenneth Coleman is a writer, musician, and Pacific Northwest historian. He is the author of Dangerous Subjects: James D. Saules and the Rise of Black Exclusion in Oregon. He earned his MA in history from Portland State University in 2014, and his current research interests include settler colonialism, class formation, and racism in pre-statehood Oregon.

Author's Entries

  • Cockstock Incident

    The Cockstock Incident in 1844, also known as the Cockstock Affair, was the most significant occurrence of violence between white immigrants and the Oregon Country’s Indigenous residents prior to the Whitman murders in 1847. The confrontation resulted in three deaths and contributed to the formation of the Oregon Rangers, the …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Dorothea Lange in Oregon

    One of America’s best-known photographers, Dorothea Lange captured some of the most evocative and recognizable images of Oregon during the Great Depression. From 1935 to 1939, she worked as a field investigator and photographer with the Resettlement Administration, a New Deal agency that was subsumed by the new Farm Security …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Hill Military Academy

    Hill Military Academy was a prominent military school in Portland, Oregon, during the first half of the twentieth century. The school’s founder, Joseph Wood Hill (1856-1930), modeled the private boys secondary school after similar institutions in the United States. Hill, like other proponents of military training for young boys at …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • James D. Saules (1806?–1850s)

    James D. Saules was a Black American sailor and musician who arrived in Oregon in 1841 as part of the U.S. Exploring Expedition. He ran a freight business on the Columbia River and was known for playing the fiddle at social events. By 1843, Saules faced racist attitudes when …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Oregon Rangers

    The Oregon Rangers, an organized militia based in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, was the first nonindigenous armed force in the Pacific Northwest. The Provisional Government created the unit on March 9, 1844, to protect the nascent Anglo-American community from potentially hostile Indigenous groups in the aftermath of the Cockstock Incident. The …

    Oregon Encyclopedia

  • Ralph James Salisbury (1926-2017)

    Ralph James Salisbury was an Oregon poet, author, editor, and teacher. He is the author of eleven books of poetry, including Rainbows of Stone (2000), an Oregon Book Award finalist; three books of short fiction; and a memoir, So Far, So Good (2013). His work reflects his Native …

    Oregon Encyclopedia