Camas-Washougal Historical Society Meeting Features Confluence

The community is invited to attend a presentation about the work of the Confluence organization to connect people to the history, living cultures, and ecology of the Columbia River system through Indigenous voices. It will be hosted by the Camas-Washougal Historical Society (CWHS) on Saturday, November 16 at 2 p.m. at the Washougal Community Center, 1681 C St, Washougal WA. The event is free and the public is welcome.

Confluence Executive Director, Colin Fogarty, will speak on “Connecting to Place Along the Columbia River.”  The community-supported nonprofit, based in Vancouver, WA, works through six art landscapes, educational programs, and community gatherings in collaboration with northwest tribes, communities, and the celebrated artist Maya Lin.  Confluence is also building a digital library of first-personal narratives of Native elders, thinkers and leaders.

The presentation comes at an important time for the CWHS and the Two Rivers Heritage Museum, as they begin construction of the Gathering Place at Washuxwal. This plank house-inspired pavilion will serve as a backdrop to tell stories of the earliest inhabitants to the area.

The Confluence believes that, for too long, the story of the Columbia River system has been essentially, “Lewis and Clark ‘discovered’ this place and the pioneers settled it.” The mission of Confluence is to move beyond this oversimplified story to elevate the long-marginalized voices of Indigenous people.

Fogarty, who became Confluence Executive Director in 2014, has always been drawn to the notion that we are surrounded by history and that it is up to us to see it. As a public radio journalist at Oregon Public Broadcast, his stories were heard frequently on NPR and he won regional and national awards. He covered state and regional politics, Oregon’s landmark Death with Dignity law, the bankruptcy of the Archdiocese of Portland and many other issues. Along the way, Fogarty kept returning to the theme of history and its role in our everyday lives.

Light refreshments will be served and CWHS will hold a short annual election of officers at the meeting.

CWHS operates the Two Rivers Heritage Museum located at 1 Durgan Street in Washougal which closes October 26 for wintertime maintenance and display changes.  It will reopen on Thursday, March 5, 2020.  Group tours are still available by appointment.  Contact Lois Cobb at 835-5449 for scheduling.

Join the CWHS to help support additional historic presentations and preservation of local history. Membership information will be available at the presentation.  Volunteers for the CWHS and the museum are welcome!  For more information about the CWHS and the Two Rivers Heritage Museum go to www.2rhm.com and follow them on Facebook.