This image circa 1890s shows members of the Flowers family at their Portland area farm.

New digital images reveal the lives of early Black Oregon residents

The Oregon Historical Society recently released a new set of digitized historical images of some of the state’s earliest Black residents. The photographs provide a rare look into the lives of Black pioneers.

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Remembering the first female mayor of Troutdale, Oregon

110 years ago, voters elected part-Indigenous community activist Clara Latourell Larsson as Oregon’s second female mayor — just one year after women achieved the right to vote statewide.

Oregon counties once used poor farms to care for their neediest residents

Oregon once required counties to take care of their neediest residents. For decades, relief institutions known as "poor farms" operated throughout the state. They provided food, shelter, medical care and sometimes burial services. The treatment of residents varied widely, with some poor farms providing refuge for those in need while others operated more like prisons.

Physician, lesbian, radical labor activist – the passions of Portland’s Dr. Marie Equi

Born in 1872 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, Marie Equi grew up in a working-class immigrant family and labored in the town’s textile mills to help support the family. As a young woman, she self-studied her way into medical school and received her degree in 1903. But her life took a hard left into radical politics after she made her way to Oregon.


From historical biographies to issues and events that have shaped our state, "Oregon Experience" is an exciting television series co-produced by OPB and the Oregon Historical Society. The series explores Oregon's rich past and helps all of us — from natives to newcomers — gain a better understanding of the historical, social and political fabric of our state. Each show brings to life fascinating characters — both familiar and forgotten — who've played key roles in building our state into the unique place we call home.