Black United Front Oral History Project

Portland Black United Front Oral History Project

Black United Front Oral History Project Banner

This digital exhibit was built by Portland State University public history students in 2015 to highlight the interpretive richness of an oral history collection held by the PSU library.  The oral histories were also completed by PSU students in 2010.  

The interviews focus on African American activists in Portland who led or supported the work of the Black United Front (BUF).  The Front in Portland, Oregon, was a branch organization of a national group founded and based in Chicago which pressed forward a civil rights agenda during the 1980s.  The Front took on local issues from the earlier mid-century movement, like school desegregation and police brutality, as well as global ones like the fight against apartheid in South Africa.

Notable accomplishments of the Portland Black United Front involved education, and many of the narrators in this exhibit highlight the transformational power of teaching and learning. This exhibit features the Front's Saturday School and PSU's Black Studies Department.

This exhibit contains audio and text excerpts from oral history interviews of community members, photographs, press articles, documents, and biographies.

Complete transcripts from a selection of interviews are accessible on the Black United Front Oral History Project page on PDXScholar.

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