Washington County’s Black Past & Present

February 29th, 2024 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Aloha Community Library
Washington County's Black Past & Present @ Aloha Community Library

We’re celebrating the legacy and enduring vitality of Black Americans in Washington County! Join us to hear from a panel of local historians, authors, and business community leaders with expertise in the history of Black Oregonians, from the mid-nineteenth century when Oregon was first becoming a state through the turn of the twentieth century and right up to the present day.

Presented in collaboration with Washington County Chamber’s Black Advisory Business Council.

Meet the presenters: 
  • Jim Labbe will talk about the competition to define Oregon’s laws on race and slavery around the time of statehood, with particular emphasis on local events and activists. Mr. Labbe is the author of the article, The Colored Brother’s Few Defenders from Oregon Historical Quarterly (Winter 2019).
  • Kim Moreland will illuminate the story of the Cash family – Black pioneers who, at the turn of the century, settled in Helvetia and thrived as land owners, farmers, entrepreneurs, and community members despite Oregon’s harsh Black exclusion laws. Ms. Moreland is the co-author of the book, African Americans of Portland, which you can find through our catalog here.
  • Titonian Wallace Sr., founding member and first chair of Washington County Chamber’s Black Advisory Business Council, will share his insights into the landscape of Black-owned businesses in our area.