Vanport History Audioboxes

Our Vanport history audioboxes have been installed in Portland! These solar-powered freestanding audio exhibits provide information and stories about Vanport in the voices of its original residents, featuring clips from new and archival interviews.

Listen to our audioboxes in downtown Portland outside Lincoln Hall (PSU campus) and at Force Lake (NE Portland, at the historic location of Vanport). These audioboxes are wheelchair accessible and accessible to those who are blind or have low vision, with Braille labels and adjustable volume control.

Alternatively, you can listen to the audioboxes on your device by clicking on the audio segments below.

To read rather than listen to the audiobox content, click here to download the full transcript.

1. Introduction: Oregon’s Vanished City

2. Vanport Schools & Portland State University

3. Discrimination & Diversity in Vanport

4. Life in Vanport

5. Growing Up in Vanport

6. Wartime Shipyard Work

7. The Flood of 1948

8. Vanport’s Legacy


We are grateful to the many Vanport residents who have shared their memories, including Anna Donner, Beatrice Marshall, Carolyn Hinton, Edna Hopkins, Ed Washington, Anishinaabe tribal elder Franklin Blair, Frances Sumida Palk, Howard Lucas, Ida Mae Shepherd, Isaka Shamsud-Din, John Elmore, John Gould, Dakota-Sioux tribal elder Joyce Nelson, Nona Pool, Ralph Bennett, Regina Flowers, Rosa Dickson, and Sally Privette.

Their stories were recorded in interviews by the Vanport Placemarking Project or excerpted from oral histories in the Oregon Historical Society Research Library. This narration was voiced by Victor Mack, and written, edited, and produced by Thomas Meinzen.

All the audio available in this audiobox is copyrighted to the Oregon Historical Society, Oregon Nikkei Endowment Collection, Portland State University, or Vanport Placemarking Project. Special thanks to support for this project from the Oregon Heritage Grant, Collins Foundation, Oregon Community Foundation, Autzen Foundation, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, and Portland Parks Foundation. We welcome any feedback on these audioboxes, which can be sent to Thank you for listening!