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Riches Of The City (1975) @ 5th Ave Cinema/Oct. 9, 2:00 PM/FREE

September 26th, 2011 by Anne Richardson · No Comments · 1970's, Oregon director, Oregon film, Oregon film new definition, Oregon film old definition, Oregon location (primary)

5th Avenue Cinema is presenting a series of rediscovered student films made at PSU’s historic Center for the Moving Image, an institution which predated (and helped to produce) the Northwest Film Center. Graduate student Heather Petrocelli is doing research about the Center, and happens to work for 5th Ave Cinema – so voila! – this series will take place right there on campus.

Public History Graduates (PHiG) is screening Lens on the Community, a series of free public programs presenting films from the Center for the Moving Image (CMI) from the Tom T. Taylor collection at the Portland State Library. These films that represent, interpret, and shape the distinct communities that constitute the greater Portland metropolitan area.

The program kicks off on October 9th at 2pm at 5th Avenue Cinema. PHiG will present the CMI film Riches of a City (1975), which documents the development of the Skidmore District and recounts the struggle to bring this downtown Portland neighborhood into the modern era while preserving its cultural and historical significance. Dr. Carl Abbott (School of Urban Studies and Planning) and Bill Hawkins (Architectural Heritage Center) will be the guest speakers who will offer insights into the film and the district, then and now.

Lens on the Community is made possible by a generous grant from the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition and the Oregon Cultural Trust and the cooperation of Portland State University Library’s Special Collections.

What: Len on the Community: Riches of a City
When: Sunday October 9, 2011 at 2pm
Where: 5th Ave Cinema, 510 SW Hall Street (between 5th and 6th)
Cost: Free

The first film, about the preservation of the Skidmore District, draws its title from the words engraved on Skidmore Fountain “Good citizens are the riches of a city.”

The fountain was donated by Stephen G. Skidmore. The words were donated by C. E. S. Wood, a  corporate lawyer by day/rabble rouser by night who helped found Portland Art Museum and Multnomah County Library, among many other civic minded deeds, none of which impressed his wife when he asked her for a divorce because he had fallen in love with a preacher’s wife. Portland society sided with Wife #1, so Wood spent his last two decades in romantic exile in California with Wife #2.

Maybe this proves that “Good husbands are the riches of the city”, because Wood’s wealth, what was left after providing for his first wife and five children, went with him to California.

C. E. S. Wood was played by Sam Elliott, also a Portlander, in the television movie, I Will Fight No More Forever.

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