VANCOUVER, Wash. — Washington State University Vancouver will present an evening commemoration, “Remembering Vanport,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 11, in the Student Services Building auditorium.
“Remembering Vanport” is a two-hour event that recognizes the historic significance of the Vanport community that was destroyed in the flood of 1948. The event will include a screening of the short film “Vanport, A Survivor’s Tale” and will be followed with a panel discussion by flood survivors.
Vanport, the largest public housing project in U.S. history, was created to accommodate wartime workers in the shipping industry and was the first multiethnic community in the Portland (Ore.) metropolitan area. During World War II, Vanport was the focus of a large wave of African-American migration to the Pacific Northwest. To date, the Vanport community, the circumstances surrounding the flood that destroyed it and the subsequent dispersion of ethnic groups remain important aspects of Pacific Northwest and African-American history.
The event is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the blue lot for $1.50. The event is sponsored by the Center for Social and Environmental Justice at WSU Vancouver, the Vancouver National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Sabin Community Development Corporation and is endorsed by Vancouver for Peace.