Tonight, Know Your City, the aptly-named non-profit dedicated to connecting people to place —  and formerly the Dill Pickle Club, who we’ve long known and loved and learned from — is making moves. 
On a day-to-day basis, they organize tours, lectures and youth programs and preach the gospel of the Pacific Northwest come rain or, occasionally, shine. 
Now, they’re getting ready to mobilize their message — literally, they want to buy a kiosk on wheels and bike it around town — but need a little help from their friends. Join them tonight for A Night in the Alley as they promote “Kiosk Awareness,” or do their best to gather support for their latest and greatest initiative. If you can’t make it, their Kickstarter campaign has more information on their mission and message, and it’s the place to go to pitch in. Make haste though, Internet friends, as this golden opportunity to lend a hand to professional lend-a-handers ends on Kickstarter November 28. And perhaps most importantly, you could get pickles. 

Tonight, Know Your City, the aptly-named non-profit dedicated to connecting people to place —  and formerly the Dill Pickle Club, who we’ve long known and loved and learned from — is making moves. 

On a day-to-day basis, they organize tours, lectures and youth programs and preach the gospel of the Pacific Northwest come rain or, occasionally, shine. 

Now, they’re getting ready to mobilize their message — literally, they want to buy a kiosk on wheels and bike it around town — but need a little help from their friends. Join them tonight for A Night in the Alley as they promote “Kiosk Awareness,” or do their best to gather support for their latest and greatest initiative. If you can’t make it, their Kickstarter campaign has more information on their mission and message, and it’s the place to go to pitch in. Make haste though, Internet friends, as this golden opportunity to lend a hand to professional lend-a-handers ends on Kickstarter November 28. And perhaps most importantly, you could get pickles. 


Vanport was a city of public housing — hastily planned and built — in Multnomah County, Oregon. The second largest town at the time in Oregon, and the largest public housing project in the nation, it was constructed in ‘43 to house workers of the Kaiser Shipyards during wartime, and was home to over 40,000 people, almost half African American. After the war ended, more than half of Vanport’s residents moved on, but many remained and an influx of WWII vets helped the makeshift city hang on.
Dramatically, and without warning, Vanport was roundly destroyed by flood this day 65 years ago when a section of the dike retaining the Columbia River collapsed during a flood. Fifteen people were killed and the city itself was completely underwater by nightfall, leaving all of its inhabitants homeless.
Oregon has a gnarly history of racist housing discrimination, and that legacy lives on today in so many subtle and not-so-subtle ways. At the time that Vanport existed, its cultural, racial and linguistic diversity rivaled that of present-day New York City. It was an anomaly, a firecracker, a happy accident, a big mistake, a setup for disaster, and, predictably, not well-protected by its government. The lack of care and attention paid by the county when Vanport flooded mimics the much-derided bumbles of our federal government when Katrina hit New Orleans.
The city, now vanished, has an incredible and rare history — read up on it today when you have some time, and let us know what you think, or if you were there and you have a story, send it along. For more in-depth reading, swoop up a box set of Oregon History comics by Know Your City (formerly the Dill Pickle Club) — Portland’s Black Panthers, Oregon feminism and the history of Chinatown are yours for the learning.

Vanport was a city of public housing — hastily planned and built — in Multnomah County, Oregon. The second largest town at the time in Oregon, and the largest public housing project in the nation, it was constructed in ‘43 to house workers of the Kaiser Shipyards during wartime, and was home to over 40,000 people, almost half African American. After the war ended, more than half of Vanport’s residents moved on, but many remained and an influx of WWII vets helped the makeshift city hang on.

Dramatically, and without warning, Vanport was roundly destroyed by flood this day 65 years ago when a section of the dike retaining the Columbia River collapsed during a flood. Fifteen people were killed and the city itself was completely underwater by nightfall, leaving all of its inhabitants homeless.

Oregon has a gnarly history of racist housing discrimination, and that legacy lives on today in so many subtle and not-so-subtle ways. At the time that Vanport existed, its cultural, racial and linguistic diversity rivaled that of present-day New York City. It was an anomaly, a firecracker, a happy accident, a big mistake, a setup for disaster, and, predictably, not well-protected by its government. The lack of care and attention paid by the county when Vanport flooded mimics the much-derided bumbles of our federal government when Katrina hit New Orleans.

The city, now vanished, has an incredible and rare history — read up on it today when you have some time, and let us know what you think, or if you were there and you have a story, send it along. For more in-depth reading, swoop up a box set of Oregon History comics by Know Your City (formerly the Dill Pickle Club) — Portland’s Black Panthers, Oregon feminism and the history of Chinatown are yours for the learning.


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