MCL Blogs

Do you read Facebook or Twitter for news? Subscribe to a newspaper? Peruse websites? In an era of so many choices for information, how do you make a judgement about what's fact, what's slanted and what's just completely untrue? 

Here are some tips for evaluating what you are reading, listening to or viewing.  

  1. Consider the source. You can learn more about a website by clicking on the "About Us" link  that most provide, but don't stop there. Research the organization or author's credentials. If statistics are cited, see if you can find the source, and double-check that they are represented correctly.  
  2. Read beyond attention-getting headlines to check the whole article. If a statement is made, is a source given? Click through to check the sources, and do your own searching on those citations.
  3. Check the date. Sometimes old news stories resurface, and they might be out of date or inaccurate. If currency is important, limit your search to recent results
  4. Watch for bias, including your own. Check different sources to see how each treats a news item. Consider your own beliefs and perspectives and think about how that might change how you perceive what you are seeing. 
  5. Too weird to be true? If something seems implausible, see what fact-checking sites like Snopes, PolitiFact, and FactCheck have to say. 

For more about being a smart information consumer, check out the infographic, "How to Spot Fake News", provided by The International Federation of Library Associations. If you're more of a visual learner, take a look at the CRAAP test video from librarians at California State University. 

And remember, if you're looking for reliable information, get in touch with us. We're always happy to help.

 

Thư viện công cộng phản ảnh được điều tốt nhất trong mẫu mực của quốc gia Mỹ: một nơi tất cả mọi người đều được chào đón và an toàn để học hỏi, sáng tạo, thể hiện và tìm hiểu những phương cách làm cho cuộc sống của họ tươi đẹp hơn.

Hiện tại, một số lượng khá đông người dân và các cộng đồng đang gặp phải những bất ổn, bị phân biệt đối xử và không được xem trọng . Cùng một quốc gia, chúng ta cần phải giải quyết các câu hỏi, các thử thách lớn lao chúng ta đang gặp phải, trong việc xây dựng một liên hợp hoàn hảo hơn.

Thay mặt cho mỗi một nhân viên làm việc tại Thư viện Hạt Multnomah, tôi xin gửi những lời chân thành tâm đắc tới quý vị, những người chúng tôi phục vụ:

Thư viện Hạt Multnomah là một nơi an toàn. Quý vị được chào đón. Quý vị được trân trọng. Dù quý vị vẻ ngoài như thế nào, quý vị đang tin tưởng ở điều gì, quý vị sinh ra nơi nào, quý vị sử dụng ngôn ngữ gì; Dù cho quý vị yêu thương ai, khả năng như thế nào, tình trạng nhà ở ra sao hay bất cứ định dạng nào khác mà quý vị nhận, thư viện chúng tôi ở đây là để phục vụ quý vị.

Thư viện đã luôn luôn và sẽ mãi mãi là nơi mà mọi người được sống tự do, được là chính mình, được suy nghĩ và nói lên lên ý kiến của riêng mình. Hãy cùng chúng tôi đón nhận điều này với lòng nhân ái, sự hòa hợp, sự tôn trọng và lòng dũng cảm, ngay cả khi đối diện với các khác biệt giữa chúng ta.

Vailey Oehlke

Tổng Giám Đốc Thư viện

Ngày 18 tháng 11 năm 2016

Vailey Oehlke

 

公共图书馆体现了美国最美好的理念:一个所有人都受欢迎的场所,

在这里可用各种方法安全地学习,创造,表达和探索去改善人们的生活.

今天,许多群众和社区都正在经历不稳定,歧视和边缘化.

作为一个国家,我们必须解决所面临的巨大问题和挑战以便追求更完美的联盟.

 

我谨代表每位在穆鲁玛郡图书馆工作的人员,向我们服务的群众表达这些衷心的感言:

穆鲁玛郡图书馆是一个安全的场所.您是受欢迎和尊贵的.我们在这里为您服务,

不论您的样貌,信仰,出生地点,所讲的语言,您爱的对象,您的技能,您的居住状况或您其他的特征.

 

图书馆一直都是并永远维持着作为一个供人们可以自由地生活,体验,思考和说出自己真实经历的场所.

即使我们之间存在着差异,但请加入我们一起以仁慈,包容,尊重和勇气来完成这项工作.

 

Vailey Oehlke

图书馆总监

2016年11月18日

Vailey Oehlke

 

"How do you teach people to love each other's differences?"
Volunteer Kim Donovan

by Sarah Binns

When Kim Donovan and her husband moved to Portland from the Sacramento area last year, she left the third-grade classroom where she’d been teaching since 2008. Unable to find a teaching job here, Kim didn’t let that deter her passion for education: “I said, ‘I’m going to the library, someone’s going to need my help!’” Kim was right and she is now a committed ambassador for Multnomah County Library’s Let Every Adult Read Now (LEARN) program

LEARN is a one-on-one tutoring program for adults who want to learn to read. Volunteers have partners, learners, with whom they meet weekly. Kim delights in sessions with her partner. “I’ve gained a friend that never would have happened otherwise,” she says with a smile. In the span of their few months together, Kim’s partner has progressed from a 2nd to a 3rd-grade reading level. “It’s fun to watch her grow and see her get excited that she can read and have more confidence in daily life,” Kim says. Many of us take this confidence to participate in day-to-day activities, such as identifying ingredients on food labels, navigating the computer, and reading the mail, for granted. Building this confidence is the mission of the LEARN program. Launched in 2010, LEARN is led by Lisa Regimbal, the adult literacy coordinator, and always needs more tutors. You can apply by signing up through the Multnomah County Library website

The thing about Kim, though, is that LEARN is just the tip of the iceberg. “I volunteer everywhere,” she laughs. “I’m a teacher, I give back.” Kim volunteers with the Red Cross Disaster Action Team, the Cub Scouts, and at Philip Foster Farm, a pioneer historical site where twice a week she dresses in period costume and teaches Oregon history. “Sometimes I don’t have time to change so I go to the grocery store in my costume!” she says. It’s easy to be in awe of everything she does. 

Kim also participates in Multnomah County Library’s Talk Time program, in which people meet to practice their English conversation skills. Both LEARN and Talk Time feed into Kim’s ultimate passion to teach and encourage the love of books. “How do you teach love?” she asks. “I learn so much from people’s different stories. How do you teach people to love each other’s differences?” Kim seems to be doing just that through all the work she does for the Multnomah County Library community. 

A Few Facts About Kim

Home library: Gresham Library

Currently reading: Children’s books to read to her grandkids over FaceTime

Most influential book: Scripture such as The Bible and The Book of Mormon
Favorite book from childhood: Roald Dahl: as a teacher, she loved to read The BFG and The Witches to her students.
A book that has made you laugh or cry: The BFG because “The kids laugh, then I laugh, then the kids laugh some more.”
Favorite section of the library: Magazines and children’s section
E-reader or paper books: “I almost prefer e-books because I don’t have to keep them on a shelf. But some books you just have to touch!”
Favorite place to read: A chair at home by the fire, looking out at Mt. Hood.

Thanks for reading the MCL Volunteer Spotlight. Stay tuned for our next edition coming soon! Read last month's Volunteer Spotlight.

 

The public library reflects the best of the American ideal: a place where all people are welcome and safe to learn, create, express and explore in ways that better their lives.

Today, a great many people and communities are experiencing instability, discrimination and marginalization. As a nation we must address the enormous questions and challenges we face in pursuit of a more perfect union.

On behalf of every person who works at Multnomah County Library, I offer these heartfelt sentiments to the people we serve: Multnomah County Library is a safe place. You are welcome. You are valuable. We are here to serve you, regardless of how you look, what you believe, where you were born, what language you speak, who you love, your ability, your housing status or any other way that you identify.

The library has always been and will forever remain a place where people are free to live, be, think and speak their own truths. Please join us as we embrace this work with kindness, inclusion, respect and courage, even in the face of our differences.

Vailey Oehlke

Director of Libraries

Vailey Oehlke

 

La biblioteca pública refleja lo mejor del ideal estadounidense: un lugar donde todas las personas son bienvenidas y se encuentran seguras para aprender, crear, expresarse y explorar en maneras que mejoren sus vidas.  

Hoy en día, muchas personas y comunidades están sufriendo inestabilidad, discriminación y marginalización. Como nación, debemos abordar las enormes interrogantes y los retos que enfrentamos con el propósito de lograr una unidad más perfecta.  

En nombre de cada persona que trabaja en la Biblioteca del Condado de Multnomah, les ofrezco estos sinceros sentimientos a las personas que servimos: la Biblioteca del Condado de Multnomah es un lugar seguro. Ustedes son bienvenidos. Ustedes son personas valiosas. Estamos aquí para servirles, independientemente de su apariencia, sus creencias, el lugar donde nacieron, el idioma que hablen, a quien amen, sus habilidades, su situación de vivienda o cualquier otra forma en que ustedes se identifiquen.  

La biblioteca siempre ha sido y será para siempre un lugar donde las personas tienen la libertad de vivir, ser, pensar y decir sus propias verdades. Por favor, únanse a nosotros mientras nos dedicamos a este trabajo con bondad, inclusión, respeto y valor, aun frente a nuestras diferencias.

Vailey Oehlke

Directora de Bibliotecas

Vailey Oehlke, Directora de Bibliotecas

 

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone Blu-ray cover
Multnomah County Library offers Blu-ray Discs for check-out. You can find a complete list by searching bluray as a keyword in My MCL. You can check out a combined total of 30 DVDs and Blu-ray Discs.

About Blu-rays

  • You will need a Blu-ray player or a computer with a Blu-ray drive to watch a Blu-ray Disc. Some game consoles (e.g. Xbox One, PS3 and PS4) support Blu-ray discs as well. Blu-ray Discs will not play in a DVD player.
  • Blu-rays are a high-definition (HD) format, but you must be using HDTV or a HD monitor to watch in HD. Blu-rays can be viewed on a conventional monitor, but quality will not be high-definition.

Are you looking for a specific title, but you can't find it? Ask the Librarian.

The Night Circus arrives without warning. What was an empty field by day becomes transformed by night. A city of tents appears as if by magic, drawing people through the dusk to the soft-twinkling lights and the smell of warm caramel in the air. When the guests arrive, they hardly know where to go first. One tent contains a frozen world of ice and snow all in shades of white and silver, making the visitor feel as though he has been transported into his own personal snow globe. In another a mysterious woman reads the future in her cards. In another, guests climb to the top of the tent by way of  a maze of soft clouds and, reaching the top, gently float back down to the ground.

Le Cirque des Reves showcases the purely fantastical next to the usual entertainments one might expect - the contortionists, the jugglers and of course, the magicians. What the guests don't realize is that the night circus exists only incidentally as a place to while away an evening: the circus is really a giant game-board. At its center are two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who are destined to compete in a battle to out-magic one another, a battle that will lead to the death of one.

Though Erin Morgenstern's book is already in high demand, it is well worth the wait. The Night Circus is a delectable treat of a novel, a fantastical, almost architectural dessert that is almost too beautiful to eat, but you won't be able to resist.

KIDS REACT TO TYPEWRITERS

Kids aren't born knowing how to use a keyboard.  But in today’s keyboard-centric world, kids need to learn to type. Luckily, there are some good free online typing programs aimed at students.

The article  Ed Tech Ideas: Keyboarding Sites for Kids lists many links to other free typing games.

Need more help? Contact a librarian

This Is 200 Calories

3 eggs =18 gummi bears =1 glass of milk= 200 calories.This is 200 Calories is a fun video that compares what 200 calories of different foods looks like. It also talks about what a calorie is, and why calories aren’t the only thing to consider in planning a healthy diet.

What Does 200 Calories Look Like? is a poster that compares visually 200 calories of more foods.

Wondering how many calories are in your favorite drink? This look at calories in drinks compares calories in soft drinks, juices and coffee drinks. Don't forget, serving size matters!

The Fast Food Nutrition Calculator lets you calculate the nutrition of meals at fast food restaurants. Select the items you want to eat then see how many total calories, grams of fat, and could it be? - vitamins -  are hiding inside your favorite meal.

Need more help?  Contact a librarian to be sure you get what you need.

Cite Your Paper in Under a Minute - EasyBib.com

Whenever I have to write something, whether it’s a research paper or an article, the first thing I do is keep track of my sources. There’s nothing more frustrating than having a really good fact, but not being able to remember where you found it!

There’s two good online resources, called citation makers, that I use to help me. The great thing is, you can use them to keep track of your resources while you do your research, but they also help you format the citations, and generate your list of sources, or bibliography.

Many students in Oregon use the OSLIS citation maker to generate citations. It allows you to chose between MLA and APA style guides. Be sure to read through all the instructions before you get started. You can’t save a list of citations here, so you’ll have to create your list all in one shot. 

Easybib is a free service that offers you a lot more, and is good for high school and college students. You can save multiple bibliographies here, use their note taking system, generate a bibliography in Word, and generate citations for up to 59 formats of material, in MLA, APA or Chicago/Terabian style manuals. Watch the training video to learn more, and please contact a librarian if you need more help.

NEZ PERCES HORSES

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This video explores the integral role horses played in Nez Perce history and how they relate to the tribe’s culture today.

 

When researching Native Americans of Oregon, the Oregon Blue Book provides a good introduction to Oregon tribes, and has information on current tribal leaders and the economy of the tribe, plus an overview of the tribe’s history and culture.

 

Native Languages of Americas provides information about the original inhabitants of Oregon and includes a map of where they were located.

The Northwest Portland Area Health Board provides history and geographical information for the nine tribes that make up its membership. Click on the "Members" tab on the upper tool bar.

The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians provides information about Oregon tribes and a list of links to their websites, plus information about natural resources, economic development and tribal government for the Cow Creek Band.

Access Genealogy contains an overview of the history Oregon tribes, and links to many tribes' individual websites.

You can also search the library’s catalog, or do an online search for a tribe’s name. Many tribes have their own websites, which contain current information about tribal affairs, and might also include historical material.

If you still need more help, contact a librarian to be sure you get what you need.

--by the Hollywood Teen Book Council

We are highly anticipating the release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child that will be published July 31, and looking forward to the movie release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in November. To celebrate, we created a list of our most recent favorite books, and  put them to the Sorting Hat test. Looking at the values of each of the four houses of Hogwarts, this is where we see these main characters most likely getting placed.

Hufflepuff values hard work, dedication, patience, loyalty, and fair play.

Hufflepuff titles
Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E. K. Johnston

Head Cheerleader, Hermione, does a lot to keep the team together and enjoys the athleticism of cheerleading. She has a dedication to the craft.

Dig Too Deep by Amy Allgeyer

Liberty cares about the mining that is destroying and polluting the town. She begins her own investigation seeking fairness and justice.

X: A Novel by Ilyasah Shabazz and Keekla Magoon

Growing up, Malcolm Little is constantly frustrated by the lack of fair play. Trying to leave a past behind him, he knows he can’t run forever and his new found freedom is an illusion.

Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

Sierra Santiago realizes that something strange is going on, and finds herself to be in a long line of shadowshapers that are currently at war with evil anthropologists and unlikely zombies.

Calvin by Martine Leavitt

Calvin believes that if he can convince Bill Watterson to create one more Calvin and Hobbes comic strip, it will make him better. His dedication to this leads Calvin to go on the journey of the lifetime.

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Finn keeps searching for Roza after everyone gives up. He also stands up to the terrible brothers.

Boy in the Black Suit by Jason Reynolds

After his mother’s death, Matt values hard work and his job at the funeral home.

Hold Me Closer: The Tiny Cooper Story by David Levithan

Larger than life Tiny Cooper, has written a play about his life. Through his quest for meaningful relationship, Tiny proves to be the most loyal  of friends.

Dumplin' by Julie Murphy

Willowdean wants to prove to everyone in her small Texas town that she is more than just a fat girl, so she prepares to compete in the beauty pageant her mother runs.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Violet is dealing with the loss of her sister, to whom she is extremely loyal. She is dedicated, and follows through on the quest to visit Indiana places.
 

 

Ravenclaw values intelligence, knowledge, and wit.

Ravenclaw picks
The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

Faith is all about knowledge and solving the mystery of her father’s death through science.

Saving Montgomery Sole by Mariko Tamaki

Monty and the other members of the mystery club are trying to figure out how things work.

The Steep & Thorny Way by Cat Winters

Hannalee values intelligence and wants to be a lawyer.  First she needs to search for the truth about her father's death while avoiding trouble from the Ku Klux Klan

The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz

Joan values education and studies on her own after the day’s work cooking and cleaning is done.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

Mikey thinks a lot, and is very intelligent. He just wants to graduate and go to prom before someone blows up the high school. Again.

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Woodson uses her intelligence to make sense of the Jim Crow South and the Civil Rights Movement.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Feyre is witty and smart, and she doesn’t want to give that away.  She is a very good problem solver.

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

Noah, one half of an intense twin rivalry, wants to see how it all works while his sister Jude manipulates their fates.

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

Austin uses his knowledge of his own family to write the history of the world - a world that has been overtaken by unstoppable soldiers that come in the form a giant praying mantises.

Jackaby by William Ritter

Abigail has very good attention to detail and is accepting of how things come her way - skills necessary when serving as R.F. Jackaby’s assistant, an investigator who studies the unexplained.

 

Slytherin house values ambition, cunning and resourcefulness
 

Slytherin picks
Outrun the Moon by Stacy Lee

Mercy wants into the St. Clare’s School for Girls and she uses her cunning to gain admission.

Highly Illogical Behavior by John Corey Whaley

Lisa is ambitious, resourceful and cunning. She’s also very savvy.

Burn, Baby Burn by Meg Medina

Nora is determined to get out and get on with the next part of her life. She wants to be more than what she is currently seeing that there is.

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke

Both Wink and Poppy use secrets to have power over Midnight and their other friends.

A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

Charlotte Holmes is quite proud of her heritage and is resourceful enough to solve mysteries.

This Side of Home by Renée Watson

Nikki holds onto her ambition that she and her twin sister Maya have had since they were little - to leave Portland and attend a prestigious college. Gentrification in the traditionally African American neighborhood raises challenges.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman

After the planet Kerenza is attacked, Kady’s mother is on another ship and Kady is determined to get to her.

Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith

Ida Mae has ambition and knows where she is going.  She wants to be a pilot and in order to do that she must use her cunning and pass as white.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth

After she was out as gay and sent to a restrictive church camp, Cameron survives the re-education without being brainwashed.

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

Jude is very ambitious and does what it takes to get in a prestigious art school, even if it means selling out her twin brother Noah.



Gryffindor values bravery, daring, nerve, and chivalry.

Gryffindor picks
Unbecoming by Jenny Downham

Katie uses her nerve to navigate around her mother’s rules so she can discover the details of her grandmother’s story.

Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin

While Riley demonstrates bravery by keeping a blog about what it is like to be gender fluid, they also inspire bravery in others.

Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez

Naomi navigates through 1937 East Texas dodging racist policies and discrimination.

The Great American Whatever by Tim Federle

Quinn values bravery, even if he isn’t feeling up to it at the moment.

If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo

Amanda shows her bravery and nerve as she navigates her school as a transgender girl.

Under a Painted Sky by Stacy Lee

It takes guts to cross the country while dressed as boys, as Samantha and Annamae demonstrate again and again.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Theodore is brave in trying to fix his problems himself.

The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

Henry was very polite to Flora, but he also was steady and persistent in his pursuit of her.

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Queenie is loyal to her friendships and displays bravery while standing up to her German captors that are accusing her of being a spy.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer by Joss Whedon

Buffy kills vampires for her job! Is there anything braver? She also cares deeply about her family.

Today, the library started using a new logo. The library used the same logo since becoming part of Multnomah County in 1990. Prior to that, the Library Association of Portland governed library services in Multnomah County,  using the same logo since about 1912. In 2014, after Multnomah County residents voted to create a permanent library district to fund library services and hours, the library turned 150 years old. A special logo was created for the occasion.

It is a time of rapid change and evolution for libraries. Our commitment to free and equal access and advocacy for reading will never change, but today’s libraries are so much more. They are places of learning, creation, technology access, civic participation and more. As the library evolves to meet the changing needs of our community, our visual identity is taking a new form as well. Today, the library begins using a new logo.

 

 

New library logo

 

Multnomah County Library’s updated logo was funded entirely by private dollars from Friends of the Library. The library will continue to use existing materials, like letterhead and so on, until they run out. Modest implementation costs, for things like signage, are covered by existing budgets within the library.

The library’s new logo will help create consistent visual standards for all library services. This simple geometric pattern — an “L,” a book, a portal, a window, a laptop, an arrow — the logo is whatever you want it to be. Anything is possible. Just as it is at your library.

New library banners

We are proud of the library’s 152-year history of service to this community. As the library re-imagines how it can best meet the community’s changing needs, we will always honor the library’s rich heritage.

Thank you for your ongoing support and passion for your public library.

Jeremy Graybill
Marketing + Online Engagement Director
Multnomah County Library 
503.793.0881 

A message from  Director of Libraries Vailey Oehlke

No more kids fines
With Summer Reading just around the corner, Multnomah County Library is removing late fines for all youth library materials and on youth accounts (ages 0-17), effective June 15. Children's and young adult items will no longer be charged late fines. You can read more about the specifics of the new structure here.

The public library is a partner to youth, parents, families and caregivers from birth through high school. Exposing children early to a world rich with words, songs and play helps them become readers and succeed in school and in life. We proudly serve youth of all ages with high-quality books, fun and captivating programs, research resources, homework help, and caring staff who offer personal assistance.

For many, late fines are a real barrier that stops children and families from using and benefiting from the resources the public library offers. With the support of the Multnomah County Library District Board, our library is changing this practice. All existing late fines on youth accounts and materials will be removed as of June 15, 2016.

Patrons of all ages will still be responsible for returning library material for others to use within seven weeks of the due date, or be charged the replacement value of that item. 

I wish you all a summer filled with fun and reading. Won’t you please come visit us at the library?

 

Vailey Oehlke,

Director of Libraries

Juliet Takes a Breath book cover
You know that moment when you are reading a book that you realize somehow mirrors your own life? For me that book is Gabby Rivera's Juliet Takes A Breath. Like many young folks I was intent on escaping the town that I had called home for most of my life and wanted to discover myself in someplace new. At some point my attention turned to moving west, and about 12 years ago I finally found my new home in Portland.  Juliet Milagros Palante has always called the Bronx her home, but she has her sights set on Portland. Before she leaves home, Juliet must do one thing, come out to her family. While eating dinner with her loved ones, a few hours before she is about to board the plane that will take her from the east coast to the west, she reveals her truth. Although her mother will not speak to her Juliet begins her journey to a strange new land. Juliet has a plan: figure out what it means to be queer and brown while spending the summer in Portland interning with Harlowe Brisbane, the author of one of her favorite books. In this candid coming-of-age story, Juliet discovers herself as a feminist and as a queer Latinx, finds a her community and falls in love.
Cunt: a Declaration of Independence
 
The fictional author, Harlow Brisbane, wrote a book that strikes a chord with Juliet, opening her up to the world of feminism.  Like Juliet, my introduction to feminism, radical politics and the Pacific Northwest came in the form of an eye opening book by Inga Muscio, Cunt: A Declaration of Independence. While this wasn't the first book about feminism that I had read, it was the first one that did not have an academic tone. It was a book that was passed around among my group of friends, sparked frank and often hilarious discussions, and changed the way that I moved in my female body. And like Harolow Brisbane's fictional feminist tome, Cunt: A Declaration of Independence is the kind of title that would make some passersby uncomfortable. Gotta love a book that has that kind of power!

 

In the early years, our city was called The Clearing, but in 1845, landowners Francis Pettygrove and Asa Lovejoy flipped a coin to choose an official name. Pettygove came from Portland, Maine, and Lovejoy was from Boston, Massachusetts. Pettygrove won two out of three tosses, and so our city is Portland. This slide show will show you how Portland grew from 1851-1900.

Photo of Pioneer Courthouse Square
Here are some of the historic places that make Portland special:

  • Benson Bubblers: These four-bowl drinking fountains are unique to Portland.
  • Pioneer Courthouse Square has been a school, a hotel, and a parking lot but is now considered the city’s “living room.”  
  • The Portlandia statue is the second-largest copper repoussé sculpture in the U.S. (The largest is the Statue of Liberty.)
  • Skidmore Fountain was designed to be a source of drinking water for people, horses and dogs.
  • The Pittock Mansion was the home of Henry Pittock, who arrived in Oregon penniless on a wagon train in 1853.

Because of the many bridges crossing the Willamette River, one of Portland’s nicknames is Bridgetown. Some of the bridges that connect the east side to downtown are more than 100 years old!

Photo of Lewis and Clark Exposition
What did Portlanders in the past do for fun? The Rose Festival, which still happens every June, started in 1904. The next year, Portland hosted the Lewis and Clark Centennial Expositionwhich attracted more than 1.6 million visitors. Children liked to visit the amusement parks at Oaks Park and Jantzen Beach.

You know it rains a lot in Portland, but did you know that our city has often flooded? In the flood of 1894, downtown Portland was flooded and people got around in boats. In 1948, the Vanport flood destroyed a housing area that was home to many African Americans.

For more information on Portland history, view the past and present photos at Portland Then and Now or check out the city’s Portland Timeline.

Here's a video that shows some of the changes in Portland:

 

Still have questions? Contact a librarian for help!

The Library is Like Falling Into Heaven
Volunteer Carla Lang

by Sarah Binns

Carla Lang is one of those people with whom you can start talking about books and look up from your conversation to find two hours have passed without your knowledge. The phrase “voracious reader” can be overused, but in Carla's case it is true. It’s a lifelong trait: “When I was growing up my dream was to be locked away in the library. As long as there was a store nearby,” she adds, pragmatically.

Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, Carla later drove her VW bus all the way to Alaska - and stayed for forty years. When she and her husband moved to Nome in the early '70s, the local library association was little more than a women's social club. “Over a period of a few years we transformed into a working association with an eye toward a true lending library that was funded by the city,” she explains. Through their efforts, library funding was eventually secured, and Nome's Kegoayah Kozga Public Library continues to this day.

Shortly after Carla and her husband moved from Nome to an apartment above the Sellwood Library in 2006, she noticed a sign soliciting volunteers. She started as a paging list volunteer in 2007, pulling items that patrons have put on hold. On her inaugural day, Carla was dismayed to locate only a few of the books on the 100-book list. “It turns out it was the previous day's list!” she laughs. She says the paging list is “the ultimate Easter egg hunt” and intends to go on doing this task.

Carla also volunteers with Words on Wheels, a Library Outreach Services program which delivers books to those unable to go to the library. She's been with some of her patrons for two years now and still enjoys bringing them book suggestions. When it comes to the library and reading, Carla says, “It's like falling into heaven. I never mind waiting in lines because I always have a book with me. As long as I have a book, I'm fine.”


A Few Facts About Carla

Home library: Sellwood Library

Currently reading: The Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson

Books that made you laugh or cry: Dave Barry's books make her laugh; “I try to avoid books that make me cry,” she says, "but The Art of Racing in the Rain was one that did."

Most influential book: Probably Lord of the Rings; “I always go back to it, I've read it at least 14 times.”

Guilty pleasure: “All books are guilty pleasures! But probably my science fiction.”

Favorite book from childhood: Little Women, Uncle Tom's Cabin, “and a story about a young girl in the Revolutionary War that I can't remember the title of!”

Favorite section to browse: New books, graphic novels, and staff picks

E-reader or paper books: Paper, though e-books are a nice option when on the go.

Favorite place to read: In bed in the morning with a cup of coffee or a chair in her apartment loft with good light.

Thanks for reading the MCL Volunteer Spotlight. Stay tuned for our next edition coming soon! Read last month's Volunteer Spotlight.

Andy Ricker, the James Beard Award–winning chef behind Pok Pok, lets us know his favorite cookbooks, meals and his thoughts on the Portland food scene.

 

1. Do you have any favorite cookbooks, books or cooking blogs that have inspired you?

Picture of Andy Ricker

"Thai Food" by David Thompson; "The Joy of Cooking"; "The Whole Beast: Nose to Tail Eating" by Fergus Henderson; "White Heat" by Marco Pierre White; "Cous Cous and Other Good Food" by Paula Wolfert.

 

2. What do enjoy most about the Portland food scene?

The dedication the chefs, restaurateurs, farmers, food makers and gatherers have to using local products of the highest quality and being in a community that supports this ethos.

 

3. List your top 2 favorite meals (of all time or even this week).

Last week in Phrae, Northern Thailand, I had an amazing meal of expertly made local food at a restaurant called Jin Sot. The owner is a ninja. A Tai Yai/Shan restaurant near my home here in Chiang Mai reopened after a long hiatus, during which time I was jonesing badly, and much to my relief, the food had not changed at all: delicious egg curry called Khai Oop being my favorite dish.

4. Do you have any library memories to share?
When I was a kid growing up in rural Vermont, we had no TV so reading was our entertainment. We would go to the town library (Jeffersonville) and check out as many books as were allowed per person and devour them over the week.

Inspired to try your hand at Thai cooking? Check out our booklist below for our favorite Thai cookbooks that you can check out from the library. If you are feeling particulary adventerous, try your hand at making the egg curry dish that Andy mentioned, Khai Oop.

 

DEQ map of Air Toxicity in Portland, OR

February 3, 2016, The Mercury recently reported findings of high levels of arsenic and cadmium in the air in SE Portland. Days later, the DEQ released a map that showed many areas throughout Portland to be affected.

If you are wondering, “Should I get tested for arsenic or cadmium poisoning?” this Portland Mercury article cites Dr. Gillian Beauchamp, a Toxicology Fellow at the Oregon Poison Center at OHSU, who offers advice.

A timely resource for updates on current action by Portland residents (meetings, information sharing, etc.) is the Facebook Public Group Inner SE Air Quality. Although the focus is SE Portland, there’s much information about air quality in other areas in the city being shared here too. Inner SE Air Quality is also sharing community-generated/created Google maps of cancers and serious illnessesa map for people that have tested for heavy metal exposure, and a map showing results of soil testing for heavy metals.  Check here for updates on community meetings you can attend. Neighbors for Clean Air Facebook page is another good resource.

If you are interested more broadly about air quality in Portland, check the ToxNet map. Use the Beta version and click on "zoom to a location" then enter an address to see emissions near you. If you click on "more" you can see the levels of toxins a facility reports. This doesn’t report these recent SE Portland findings.

There has been concern about a cancer cluster in SE Portland.  The Oregon Health Authority’s Cancer Registry researches possible clusters in communities. 

Questions? Call, text or email a librarian to get personalized help – or ask the librarian on duty the next time you're at the library.  We will do our best to find the right resource or service for you!

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