In 1994, a local group of Holocaust survivors dreamed of building a memorial to an ordeal that shook the world. In 1995, The City of Portland designated a site in Washington Park for the project and the Oregon Holocaust Memorial Coalition (OHMC) was formed in response to the City’s gift. The diverse makeup of the OHMC and the quality of the design team set a high standard for collaborative work. Paul Schlesinger was designated as construction project manager for the OHMC and the Portland Chapter of the American Jewish Committee, partners in the project.
Design features include a small cobblestone area with a cast stone bench, a central square, pathways, a European ornamental lamp post, bronze castings of items that death camp deportees often abandoned en route, and a wall etched with victims’ names, dates and other Holocaust information.