Oregon Cultural Memorials
Part of out OCHC mission is the creation, maintenance, and ongoing visibility for appropriate memorials to significant artists and writers of the Pacific Northwest. To date, we've installed the following:
The Penny Avila bench at the Metro Washington Park Zoo, with which the poet created a statewide children's poetry contest
The Hazel Hall poetry garden adjacent to her home on NW 22nd place, the locale in which she wrote dozens of poems that appeared in major national publications.
The Charles Erskine Scott Wood bust and plaque in the Wilson Room of downtown Portland's Central Library, honoring his renaissance career as author, artist, and attorney, and his key role in making Portland libraries public.
The John Reed bench in the SW corner of Portland's Washington Park near his birthplace and childhood home, honoring the world-famous journalist.
Currently plans are being developed that include the following proposed memorials:
Journalist Louise Bryant, in sites significant to her life and career on two continents - Portland, New York City, and Paris
Dean of western writing Ernest Haycox, on the Portland bus mall in front of his office on SW 5th Avenue downtown
Poet Elizabeth Henley, at the Wheatland Ferry just north of Salem, the setting of her most famous poem
Popular historian Stewart Holbrook, by his long-term residence in NW Portland
Chef-extraordinaire James Beard, born in Oregon in 1903, near his lifelong vacation home in Gearhart on the Oregon Coast
We've already begun fundraising for the Bryant and Henley memorials, and have cached several thousand $$ away toward their creation. Please help underwrite this suite of high-quality efforts to honor those who helped forge the milieu in which all of us live and today's creative artists operate. Even when working in new media that didn't exist scant decades ago, artists and their audiences continue to draw inspiration and vital perspective from the lives and creative works of our predecessors.
In addition we encourage your visit to a wide range of existing sites. They include: the lovely Beverley Cleary Children's Park just west of Grant High School; the newly installed Opal Whiteley sculpture in downtown Cottage Grove; murals for both Homer Davenport and Charles Alexander's Bobbie a Great Collie, in downtown Silverton; many homes on the National Register of Historic Places, including the former residences of Ernest Haycox and Hazel Hall in Portland and the Joaquin Miller residence in Canyon City; the graves of such distinguished figures as Sam Simpson, in Portland's Lone Fir Cemetery, and Frederic Homer Balch and Alfred Powers in the Lyle, Washington cemetery just across the Columbia near the mouth of the Klickitat River.
Many more locales of note are worthy of visiting, and many individuals and cultural settings deserve to be memorialized. We welcome your suggestions and any information that you can provide. Please use the Join/Suggestions category under Reach Us to fill us in.