Darcelle XV at Home

July 24-October 9, 2020

Through the work of Portland photographer Tom Cook, this exhibit presents Darcelle XV in the historic interior of the Elmer and Linnie Miller Residence. Cook’s portrait series captures the unique character of the 1896 Queen Anne style house and its longtime owner, Walter Cole, best known as the female impersonator and performer Darcelle XV. The home’s décor has taken on the lavish style of Darcelle XV while still maintaining its original layout and details. Among the house’s features are stained glass windows created by Jerry Bosco and Ben Milligan, glass artists, work and life partners, and founders of the Bosco-Milligan Foundation, under which the Architectural Heritage Center operates. Over the years the house has been the site of numerous gatherings, including political activist and gay rights events. Although the residence is recognized as an outstanding example of Queen Anne style residential architecture, this exhibition shows the indelible mark that Darcelle has left on the home.

This exhibit coincides with the recent listing of the Miller Residence in northeast Portland in the National Register of Historic Places and the nomination of the Darcelle XV drag club as the first LGBTQ site in Oregon to be proposed for the National Register.

Read the MSN/Oregonlive article about Darcelle and the exhibit.


Exhibit presented with support from the Cathy Galbraith Educational Endowment. 
Contributing sponsors:
Robert Mercer and James Heuer

November 1, 2019 – April 25, 2020

After Promontory: 150 Years of Transcontinental Railroading

Book cover for After Promontory featuring Cape Horn Near Celilo by Carleton Watkins, 1867, Oregon Historical Society ORHI65695.

ON MAY 10, 1869, TWO RAILROADS joined in a lonely desert of northern Utah, at a place called Promontory. On that day, dignitaries from both companies—the Central Pacific, which had built from California, and the Union Pacific, which had built from the east—gave speeches and installed ceremonial last spikes.After Promontory: 150 Years of Transcontinental Railroading

To mark the 150th anniversary of the beginning of this era, the Center for Railroad Photography & Art (Madison, WI) launched a special project, After Promontory: 150 Years of Transcontinental Railroading. This initiative includes a traveling exhibition that examines the significance and lasting impact of the transcon­tinental railroads on the American West. The AHC is currently the only venue in Oregon where the exhibit will be shown.

The exhibition features photographs by some of the most ac­complished photographers in the nation’s history, artists such as William Henry Jackson, Timothy H. O’Sullivan, and Car­leton E. Watkins. These images illustrate how railroads profoundly reshaped the human geography of the West.