Oregon State UniversitySpecial Collections & Archives Research Center

Urban League of Portland Records, 1945-2008

Scope and Content Note

The Urban League of Portland Records consist of records generated by the League and its board, officers, and staff. The records include constitutions and bylaws, correspondence, financial statements, flyers, meeting minutes, newsletters, newspaper clippings, photograph albums, photographs, posters, reports, resolutions, scrapbooks, sound recordings, surveys, videotapes, and a building plaque. The records document the administration of the organization and reflect the League's outreach to the community through various programs and activities, fundraising, interaction with the National Urban League, and African American life in Portland. The reports include annual and presidental reports; histories of the League; and reports on race relations in Portland, African American children in Portland, and Northeast Portland neighborhood revitalization. The publications include League newsletters, brochures, and reports on various topics from the National Urban League office and branches in other cities.

The photographs include prints, negatives, slides, and digital photographs on CDs and diskettes. The images, which date from the 1940s to 2005, depict League meetings, League representatives meeting with Oregon politicians, community events, League directors and board members, and League staff at National Urban League conferences. The images also document League outreach events such as job fairs, activities at the Multicultural Senior Center, programs at Okley Green Middle School, and fields trips for students to Willamette University and other locations. Many of the photographs are arranged chronologically.

The videotapes and sound recordings (25 cassettes) primarily document League events such as conference presentations, annual dinners, workshops, and award ceremonies in the 1990s, with a few recordings made in the 1980s. The sound recordings also include public service announcements and broadcasts of radio programs.

An addition to the Urban League of Portland Records (Accession 2008:031) is made up of photographs, publications, and electronic media. Numbering about 700 prints and 550 negatives in total, the photographs make up the bulk of this transfer and document events and outreach programs organized by the Urban League such as "Career Connections" job fairs, activities at the Multicultural Senior Center, programs at Ockley Green Middle School, and field trips for youth to Willamette University and other places. The images also depict ULP staff at National Urban League conferences. There are also photographic images on four cds and three diskettes found in this transfer. The publications include newsletters, brochures, a program event for the 2006 Equal Opportunity Day Dinner, and an annual report.

A second addition to the Urban League of Portland Records (Accession 2009:108) consists of a study produced by the League entitled "The State of Black Oregon: Charting the Course to Equality" and images for a slide show presentation celebrating the 60th anniversary of the League in 2005. The study includes an executive summary and a press release announcing some of the findings of the study. There is also a copy of the program for the 2009 Equal Opportunity Day Awards Dinner, where the League released the study. Made up of a total of 142 slides, the images depict past League presidents, events, previous locations of League offices in Portland, local African-American owned businesses, meetings, and programs managed by the League such as the Multicultural Senior Center.

A third addition to the Urban League of Portland Records (Accession 2010:009) is made up of account ledgers, bylaws, correspondence, financial statements, grant proposals, handbooks, historical essays, meeting minutes, membership lists, photographs, plaques, reports, scrapbooks, and videotapes. These materials primarily reflect administrative activities of the League such as annual reporting, budget management, strategic planning, organization of programs, publicity, and the documentation of community outreach events. Representing slightly more than half of this transfer, the photographs depict various events organized by the League, League directors and staff, service centers managed by the League, building renovations, holiday parties, volunteer recognitions, youth program activities, career fairs, and Urban League regional conferences. Among the highlights in these photographs include a conference that featured a visit by Coretta Scott King, annual Equal Opportunity Day dinners, "Do the Right Thing" Day activities, and portraits of founder E. Shelton Hill. In total, there are about 5000 images in all (2700 prints, 2200 negatives, and 17 slides). The videotapes contain award presentations at Equal Opportunity Day Dinners and a TV ad spot. The historical essays contain information on the National Urban League and the Portland chapter.

A fourth addition to the Urban League of Portland Records (Accession 2010:057) is made up of certificates, correspondence, and newspaper clippings collected by Faye LyDay that document her community involvement and honors received as a result of her extensive volunteer work. Active locally on issues of child care, foster homes for children, housing, and equal opportunity employment, LyDay served as a board member for the Urban League. Her service in other organizations included: Acting Coordinator for the Social Environment Dept. of the Model Cities Program, President of the Multnomah County Aid to Dependent Children Association, appointment to the Governor's (McCall) Health Planning Committee, and membership in the Community Advisory Committee to the Multnomah County Public Welfare Commission. Among the many honors received by LyDay was the Oregon Journal's Women of Accomplishments Award in 1972.


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