- Written by Brian Stimson of The Skanner
Will Bennet, right, receives an award from the City's Black History Month Committee.
Before gentrification, before Northeast redlining, and before Vanport – there was the Golden West Hotel. Sitting in the shadow of Union Station, where a large number of African Americans found gainful employment, the Golden West was a community gathering place for pool games, drinks, meals, haircuts and even a Turkish bath. The early part of the 20th century was kind to the grand hotel and the surrounding Black-owned businesses – the Depression was not.
In the late '80s, a group of concerned citizens formed the Friends of Golden West group. After organizing and building a historical display in the hotel, now owned by the Central City Concern, the group dissolved. . . .