About Alan Mitchell
The Port Orford Historical Photo Project began as a love affair between Alan Mitchell and the town of Port Orford, Oregon. Situated near the most westerly point in the contiguous United States, Port Orford is a historian’s dream, rife with the stuff of legend and romance: logging lore, quests for gold, tales of undiscovered meteorites, hard-fought battles, trials of the native people, stormy shipwrecks and thwarted dreams of the fiercely independent town spearheading an effort to secede to create The State of Jefferson, the 51st State.
Armed only with his camera and a collector’s curiosity, he began accumulating historical photos and artifacts that represent one of the most respected archives of material in the region. Truly a labor of love, Alan continues to add to the collection anything he can find: photos, maps, ribbons, newspaper articles, documents, memorabilia, oral histories, and now modern technology presents the opportunity to expand the collection to include videos, audio recordings and QTVR files for generations well into the future to enjoy.
About The Site
Alan sought out artist Rebecca Hargrave Malamud of Point.B Studio to assist him with building this archive for the ages. Malamud jumped at the chance to collaborate on this worthy endeavor and is creating a next-generation website to curate similar collections of art, momentos and photography. This builds on her previous project, The Memory Palace Project (which was a collaboration with artist Lois Miller) that also contains many wonderful photographs of the area, many of which will become part of the archive. Malamud and Mitchell will be working together to build the collection, seeking contributions from area artists and gathering stories from life-long residents to enhance the collection before they are lost forever.
UPDATE (February 2019): The site has grown dramatically with a substantial personal contribution from artist Lance Nix, who is an archive all by himself! The website has been completely redesigned from the ground up for speed, and to support large collections, including paged book content. The design is being created by Rebecca and Nathan Malamud working remotely over the Internet. Nathan and Rebecca also designed the ROAD TRIPS poster and identity using the compass rose from this website for a series of exhibits happening at Point.B Studio in 2019 that will feature exceptional photographers and artists who may even help build the collection.
UPDATE (October 2020): The site has become a completely remote collaboration during the Covid-19 Pandemic with our site creators working together from their various outposts. Big thanks to artist Rick Cook who has joined the team and assumed the role as the resident site historian lending his considerable expertise and knowledge of the area. We have also added an incredible collection of invaluable images that were digitized in the 1990s by photographer John Heida. The site is being updated daily with the addition of an interactive map feature currently under development. Much more to come. Stay Tuned!
UPDATE (December 2020): Evan Kramer has joined our team working remotely at his site at mydfz.com. Much of the material he and his wife, Valerie, produced in the form of the Port Orford Today newspaper will be mirrored at our website. He is also working on a new publication of his own creation entitled the Port Orford Plunge in 2021. More soon!
Please enjoy your stay at Port Orford Historical Photos!