Past Events

Pioneering Women of Clark County Politics

Women in Clark County PoliticsOn March 5, 2015 at 7:00pm, CCHM will host our next “First Thursday” event featuring a panel of past and present female community leaders of Clark County. They will discuss the changes they have seen in our region during their careers and the legacy they leave for future generations. Make CCHM a part of your night! Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for seniors, $2 for children under 18, and is free with a museum membership. Doors open at 5:00pm. Reservations are not necessary.

Our speakers will include Sandra Day (Ridgefield, WA City Councilmember), Nan Henriksen (former Mayor of Camas, WA), Pat Jollota (former Vancouver City Councilmember), Connie Kearney (Clark County’s first woman commissioner), and Dr. Martha Martin (East County Fire & Rescue Board Commissioner). The panel will be moderated by Judie Stanton (former Clark County Commissioner). All of these women lead extraordinary lives, and are incredibly involved in shaping our community. Please join them for an inspiring and insightful discussion.

For more event information or questions, contact CCHM through email or by phone at 360-993-5679. We offer local history at your fingertips!

Food for Thought Workshop: Urban Homesteading

Ubran Homesteading_Final_SmallOn March 21, 2015 from 1:00pm to 3:00pm, Rachel Feston from Urban Snail Farm CSA will guide you through the basic concepts behind urban homesteading. The two-hour session will cover topics ranging from starting a garden to composting. You will gain insight into food preservation and keeping animals in an urban environment. This class is in conjunction with our newest exhibit Food for Thought: Clark County’s Food History. So, join us for our first food-related workshop of the year. Tickets are $5 ($3 for members). RSVP is required and space is limited.

Please contact us at (360) 993-5679 or by email today for more information and to hold your spot!

All Aboard! Opening of SP&S: The Northwest’s Own Spokane, Portland, and Seattle Railway

On Saturday, January 31, cchm053012015, from 10:00am to 11:00am we are unveiling our newest exhibit, The Northwest’s Own Spokane, Portland, and Seattle Railway. This permanent interpretive display will be housed at Vancouver’s 1909 Train Depot (Amtrak Station), and was generously supported by grants from the Transportation Enhancement Program, U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, Washington State Department of Transportation, and the BNSF Railway Foundation.

There will be a ribbon cutting at 10:00am by CCHM Executive Director Katie Anderson, Vancouver City Council Member Anne McEnerny-Ogle, a BNSF representative, retired SP&S engineer Harry Hendricks, exhibit designer Ed Austin, and Duane Cramer from the SP&S Historical Society. After the ceremony, there will be an opportunity for you to share your train related photos and memories. We encourage you to bring photographs and memories relating to the SP&S or other Clark County railroad history.

Families, travelers, train enthusiasts, and more will marvel at how our ccchm14279ounty was transformed by railroads over the past 200 years. From the dawn of the steam engine to how trains are the backbone our modern society, this slice of homegrown history is free to the public with plenty of parking.

Also, be sure to join us at the museum to see how the railroad, and their unions, played a pivotal role in employing our county’s citizens through our “Labor: A Working History” exhibit.

To get on track with all of our exhibits, please contact us through email or by phone at 360-993-5679. CCHM – Local history at your fingertips!

First Families of Vancouver’s African American Community

On February 5, 2015 at 724c3aada-540a-4dc3-ae7f-e50fe6e343a0:00pm, the Clark County Historical Museum (CCHM) will host our inaugural “First Thursday” event of the year featuring reading and performance by local students. They will present “Deep Roots, Strong Branches” – a script made from original interviews with descendants of African American families who migrated to Vancouver during World War II and chose to stay. Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for seniors, $2 for children under 18, and free with a museum membership. Doors will open at 5:00pm.

This event was developed from a community project called “First Families of Vancouver’s African American Community: From World War Two to the Twenty-First Century.” A book by that title, researched and written by Jane Elder Wulff in collaboration with NAACP Vancouver Branch #1139, CCHM, Clark College, Clark County YWCA, and other local and regional partners, was published by this cultural program in March 2012. Copies of the book will be on hand for sale at this event.

The First Families project has spurred further work highlighting the history and contributions of Vancouver’s small but enduring African American community, such as the annual Back In The Day Reunion and the Vanport Media Project. According to Wulff, the book was just the first step in what project planners see as an ongoing effort, with many more stories waiting to be told.

Join CCHM for this fascinating glimpse into our collective past. For more information and questions, please contact us through email or by phone at 360-993-5679. We offer local history at your fingertips!

First Thursday with Martin Middlewood

Thursday, November 6, 2014 at 7:00pm
Martin Middlewood presents “The Ku Klux Klan in Southwest Washington”

IMG_0859_2_edited-1November 6th at 7:00pm Martin Middlewood discusses “The Ku Klux Klan in Southwest Washington.” He will be exploring the stories and secrets behind the Klan in Clark County during the 1920s. Much of this history is lost or hidden in old newspapers and must be teased out bit by bit. You will learn a secret side of the region’s past you probably didn’t know about.

As freelancer for more than 20 years, Martin Middlewood writes about technology, energy, the environment, and healthcare for newspapers, trade and technology magazines. He’s a board member of the Institute for Science Engineering and Public Policy and a past workshop leader for Write Around Portland. He has a Master’s Degree from Eastern Washington University in Professional and Technical Writing and has done graduate work in American History. He lives in Vancouver.

Be sure to come down and listen to the last First Thursday lecture of the year!

Researching Historical Buildings, Homes, and Property Workshop

Have you ever wondered who used to live and work in your home or on your property? Well, wonder no more…

Join our resident historian Brad Richardson Saturday, February 7th, 2015 from 12:00pm to 3:00pm for a workshop on how to uncover the history behind your building, home, or property. Tickets are $15 ($10 for CCHS members). Space is limited, so contact us today to hold your spot.Contact us at (360) 993-5679 or by email today to hold your spot!



2014 Holiday Open House & Artisans’ Market

On Saturday, December 6th, 2014, we invite you to our Holiday Open House & Artisans’ Market, a FREE DAY at the museum! Doors open at 10 am and the market ends at 4 pm. Come see what beautiful things our artists have made this year.

At 5:30pm, as part of Christmas in the Village, Dave’s Killer Magic will present a magic show for the kids! Then, stick around after the show to see Santa!





CCHM Explore Corps Discovery Day

Kids ages 8 to 12 will be guided through four fun-tastic stations ranging from a museum-wide scavenger hunt to a tree-mendous craft station. The three-hour day camp will be a fun filled and educational day for all.

Tickets for the day of discovery are $15 per child ($10 for CCHS members). Pre-pay today to reserve your spot as space is limited to 10 kids for each day. Call 360-993-5679 or email .



Past First Thursday Lectures 2014

Thursday, October 2, 2014 7:00 pm Dr. Steven M. Fountain

October 2nd at 7:00pm Dr. Steven M. Fountain presents “Fishing with Pitchforks: An Environmental History of Salmon Creek.” Learn about the ways that Salmon Creek and its surrounding watershed make it an ideal place to explore several of our region’s biggest issues.
Extending from rural forest lands through urbanized areas to Lake River, and ultimately, the lower Columbia, Salmon Creek is central to both the history of and environmental changes in Clark County. Salmon recovery, clean water, land use, invasive species, and the fine art of fishing with pitchforks are all part of the complex story of this place. Taking a long view of changes from the nineteenth century through current efforts to restore riparian habitat, Fountain explores both cautionary tales and success stories of the interactions of land, water, and community.

Dr. Fountain teaches courses in early American, Native American, and environmental history at Washington State University-Vancouver where he is currently a University Diversity Council Faculty Fellow. His research ranges across several related topics, including the historical impacts of animals, the interaction of competing European empires and Native Americans, and the dynamics of the fur trade in the Far West. He has two forthcoming books; one is on the environmental and cultural impact of horses in Native American culture and the other is a history of wild horse management. His current project examines the Hudson’s Bay Company fur trade and indigenous resource use. A Board Member of the Salmon Creek Watershed Council, he lives and works in the Salmon Creek watershed.

IMG_2583 Candice2September 4, 2014 at 7:00pm Candice Goucher will discuss how the food on our plates has changed over the centuries. Discovering the past of ordinary people can be as simple as eating one meal at a time.  Every bite we take offers a taste of local and world history.

Candice’s lecture will be paired with the opening of our newest exhibit, Food for Thought: Clark County’s Food History.

Harvest Fun Day and Food Drive!

Harvest Fun Day_Web_SquareJoin us at Heritage Farm September 27th  from 10am to 3pm for our FREE 2014 Harvest Fun Day and Food Drive!

This event is a great way to connect to Clark County’s agricultural heritage and give back to your community by picking foods from Heritage Farm gardens for donation to the Clark County Food Bank.

Bring a can of food for our food donation bins and participate in fun activities including making your own ice cream, decorating pumpkins, creating a pinecone birdfeeder, hands-on animal exhibitions, plant sales, art activities, a corn shucking contest and more!

Participating organizations include our friends at the WSU Extension, Clark County, Master Gardener Foundation of Clark County, Master Composter/Recycler program, Vancouver Urban Forestry, Washington Old Time Fiddlers Association, Clark County Food Bank, Lions Club and the Clark Cowlitz Farm Bureau.


Peg Willis, Building the Columbia River Highway: They Said it Couldn’t be Done

Peg Willis_rAugust 7th at 7:00pm Peg Willis will discuss her new book Building the Columbia River Highway: They Said it Couldn’t be Done.

An artist’s dream and an engineer’s nightmare….When nine-hundred-foot ice age floods carved the Columbia River Gorge through the Cascade Mountains to the sea, little space was left for man to form a highway of his own. It took an artist-poet-engineer extraordinaire to conquer this reluctant piece of real estate and produce the nation’s first scenic highway.

Meet Sam Hill, the mover and shaker, and Samuel Lancaster, the polio survivor, who turned modern engineering on its ear to create a “poem in stone.” Today, Oregon’s historic Columbia River Highway is hidden among the trees, where it meanders past spectacular waterfalls and dramatic views. Ride along with Peg Willis as she explores the beginnings of this miracle highway and the men who created it.


June First Thursday Event – Art of Legacy Exhibit Opening and Discussion

PencilsJune 5th at 7:00pm the museum will be having a First Thursday double header event! We will be presenting our newest exhibit Art of Legacy paired with a panel discussion with the teachers,students and museum staff that participated in this project.

Friday, June 6, guests can view the artwork at the gallery and museum as part of First Friday Art Walk..

About Art of Legacy
North Bank Artists Gallery and the Clark County Historical Museum partnered to develop the Art of Legacy pilot program. In spring of 2014, staff from the gallery and museum began working with veteran teacher Fae Moeller and her advanced art class from Thomas Jefferson Middle School on this multi-disciplinary art and humanities pilot project.

In February, students spent an entire school day touring the museum and listening to lectures from museum staff. After the museum field trip four teaching artists worked in the classroom with the students. They created art projects based on historic themes from their museum experience.

Gallery and museum staff prepared students artwork for public display. Ms. Moeller worked with students on artist statements for each project. Visitors to the museum, gallery, and City Hall will see a variety of work and be able to read about the students’ experiences.



Garden Walking Tour of Arnada Neighborhood

flowersJoin us on Saturday, May 31th, 2014 for a side-walk garden walking tour of the historic Arnada neighborhood! Learn about the history of Arnada whilst viewing their lovely contemporary side-walk gardens. Tour guides Brad Richardson and Barbara Clark will begin this one-time tour at noon. Meet at Arnada Park on E 25th & G St, Vancouver, WA 98663.

Reservations are REQUIRED. Call 360/993-5679 to purchase a ticket; cost is $5 for members and $7 for non-members.


First Thursday Lecture with Harriet Baskas

Join us May 1st for a First Thursday Lecture with journalist Harriet Baskas. She will present Hidden Treasures in Washington’s Museums, exploring the stories behind artifacts in museum collections that are rarely or never shown to the public. Support for this program provided by Humanities Washington. Doors open at 5:00pm, lecture at 7:00pm.


Clark County Historical Museum Celebrates 50 Years!


CCHM_CarnegiePassport_300X250_FinalCome celebrate with us on Saturday, May 24th with FREE admission and birthday cake at 1:00pm!  Don’t forget to pick up your FREE Mr. Carnegie’s Grand Tour of Washington and Oregon Passport, a driving tour of historic Carnegie libraries throughout the Northwest.