Guide to the Urban League of Portland Records

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Urban League of Portland (Portland, Or.)
Title: Urban League of Portland Records
Dates: 1945-2008 ( inclusive )
1965-2001 ( bulk )
Quantity: 14.35 cubic feet, including 2450 photographs and 140 videotapes (19 boxes, including 2 oversize boxes)
Collection Number: MSS UrbanLeague
Summary: The Urban League of Portland Records document the administration and programs of the League from its founding in Portland, Oregon, in 1945. The Records include correspondence, reports and publications, meeting minutes, financial records, and clippings as well as scrapbooks, photographs, videotapes, and sound recordings.
Repository: Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections & Archives Research Center
Contact Information: Special Collections & Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
Telephone: 541-737-2075
Fax: 541-737-8674
Languages: Materials in English. 

Historical Note

The Urban League of Portland was established in 1945 as an affiliate of the National Urban League. It is a non-profit, community-based organization whose mission has been to "enable African Americans to secure economic self-reliance, parity and power, and civil rights". The League has emphasized educational opportunity for African Americans and other youth, advocated for fair housing laws, and offered employment assistance.

Content Description

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.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation :  

Urban League of Portland Records, Oregon State University Archives, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information :  

The records were donated to the Archives in 2007 and 2008 on behalf of the Urban League of Portland by Marcus Mundy, the League President and CEO.

Additional Reference Guides :  

Preliminary container list available online.

Processing Note :  

This collection is not fully processed; this guide is preliminary.

Related Materials :  

This collection is a component of the Oregon Multicultural Archives. Selected images are available online in the Oregon Multicultural Archives Digital Collection.


  • Corporate Names :
  • Portland Public Schools (Or.)
  • Geographical Names :
  • Portland (Or.)--Race relations.
  • Subject Terms :
  • African Americans--Oregon--Portland.
  • Older people--Services for--Oregon--Portland.
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Film negatives.
  • Photograph albums.
  • Photographic prints.
  • Scrapbooks.
  • Slides.
  • Sound recordings.
  • Videotapes.
    • Other Creators :
    • National Urban League.

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