Zita Podany

First Thursday at the Museum: Vanport

Come to the Clark County Historical Museum at 7 p.m. on First Thursday, May 4, for a discussion of Vanport with local author Zita Podany. Nestled in the floodplain between North Portland and Vancouver, Vanport was a housing project was built to help house World War II shipyard workers. It was a city that touched many lives in a very short period of time—but on May 30, 1948, it was a city that disappeared just as quickly as it came into existence, leaving a legacy that will not soon be forgotten. Longtime Portland resident Zita Podany has for many years been fascinated with the story of a city that once thrived in an area full of marshes and sloughs, and you can hear her compelling presentation during this special First Thursday event.

This lecture is part of the Clark County Historical Museum’s First Thursday Museum After Hours Series. Admission is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, $3 for children under 18, and museum members are free. Doors will open at 5 p.m. so that you can spend some time looking at the museum’s new and continuing exhibits, and the discussion will start at 7 p.m. For more event information and questions, contact the museum at info@cchmuseum.org or by phone at 360-993-5679.

Vanished Vanport: Zita Podany at Vintage Books

Nestled in the floodplain between North Portland and Vancouver, a city was built to help house World War II shipyard workers. Its very name, Vanport, was a pleasant-sounding mash-up of Vancouver and Portland. When the United States entered the war, the demand for ships and for workers to build those ships became a huge priority. Workers were recruited from all corners of the United States. Portland had a serious lodging shortage, so much so that these workers lived in cars, tents, parks, and whatever shelter could be found. Vanport, built in a little over a year to house them, was a city that did not sleep. In its heyday, Vanport was the second-largest city in Oregon with a population of over 40,000 residents. It was a city with many firsts. It was a city that touched many lives in a very short period of time. And on May 30, 1948, it was a city that disappeared just as quickly as it came into existence, leaving a legacy that will not soon be forgotten.

Portland author Zita Podany explores this haunting history in a special presentation, “In Between Portland and Vancouver: A Talk on the Lost City of Vanport” at Vintage Books, Southwest Washington’s largest independent bookstore. This is Podany’s second appearance at Vintage to talk about Vanport; the enthusiasm with which her first talk was greeted was overwhelming—now she’s back and she’d love to hear stories from survivors and eyewitnesses! Attendees are encouraged to bring photographs, mementos, or written remembrances of Vanport, before and after the flood. The presentation will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 19. The talk is free and open to the public.

Vintage Books is located at 6613 E. Mill Plain Blvd. in Vancouver. Copies of Podany’s book, “Vanport: Images of America,” will be available for purchase and signing.

Vanished Vanport at Vintage Books

Nestled in the floodplain between North Portland and Vancouver, a city was built to help house World War II shipyard workers. Its very name, Vanport, was a pleasant-sounding mash-up of Vancouver and Portland. When the United States entered the war, the demand for ships and for workers to build those ships became a huge priority. Workers were recruited from all corners of the United States. Portland had a serious lodging shortage, so much so that these workers lived in cars, tents, parks, and whatever shelter could be found. Vanport, built in a little over a year to house them, was a city that did not sleep. In its heyday, Vanport was the second-largest city in Oregon with a population of over 40,000 residents. It was a city with many firsts. It was a city that touched many lives in a very short period of time. And on May 30, 1948, it was a city that disappeared just as quickly as it came into existence, leaving a legacy that will not soon be forgotten.

Portland author Zita Podany explores this haunting history in a special presentation, “In Between Portland and Vancouver: A Talk on the Lost City of Vanport” at Vintage Books, Southwest Washington’s largest independent bookstore. This is Podany’s second appearance at Vintage to talk about Vanport; the enthusiasm with which her first talk was greeted was overwhelming—now she’s back and she’d love to hear stories from survivors and eyewitnesses! Attendees are encouraged to bring photographs, mementos, or written remembrances of Vanport, before and after the flood. The presentation will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 19. The talk is free and open to the public.

Vintage Books is located at 6613 E. Mill Plain Blvd. in Vancouver. Copies of Podany’s book, “Vanport: Images of America,” will be available for purchase and signing.