Greetings! I am contacting you in your role as a Golden West Historic Display Advisory Committee member. You received a letter from Central City Concern about this project in fall 2008, and we are now moving forward and would like to invite you to participate in the first Advisory Committee meeting in April.At the meeting, the Advisory Committee will be asked to give input on the draft visual and sound elements of the Golden West display. The Advisory Committee is a diverse group of approximately 10 people with representation from the African American community, from the local neighborhood, and from CCC; please see attached list. As a volunteer for this committee, we hope you’ll do the following:
- Attend two meetings to review the proposed content of the historic display;
- Help make the display ‘unveiling’ event a success;
- Help publicize the exhibit to schools, history groups, community groups, etc.
Background: As you know, the Golden West building is one of the oldest remaining landmarks of African American history in Portland. Central City Concern purchased and renovated the building in 1989, and recently took full ownership. For the past 19 years, the Golden West has served countless homeless and mentally ill people. In 2007 CCC undertook a number of renovations to the building. We earmarked $4000 to restore the historic display that faces Everett Street sidewalks. When the City of Portland Visions in Action grant program became known, CCC contacted Old Town History Project Director Dr. Jackie Peterson who helped us put together an application. CCC was awarded $9250 from the City and $1000 from the Oregon Council on the Humanities. The combined funds, plus in-kind labor contributions primarily by CCC, will allow us to restore and improve the exhibit panels and to also add two new display windows on the Broadway side of the building and a sound component. The major goal is to convey the vibrancy of the African American neighborhood around the Golden West in the early part of the 20th century.
Let me know if you have any questions and we look forward to the first Advisory Committee meeting.
Thanks, EV, CCC