Northwest Passage
For a few days in May, the genealogy world will converge on Portland, Oregon. Don't go without your umbrella — or our guide to the area's historical and genealogical riches.
As the last stop for many hardy Oregon Trail pioneers, Portland, Ore., was founded with an adventurous spirit that's still apparent in its people and places. Today, it's a hotbed of family history activity and a perfect place to research your own ancestral trails, particularly if your family's past included a passage to the Pacific Northwest.

For a few days this spring, May 16-19, Portland will be the center of the family history universe, as it hosts the annual National Genealogical Society (NGS) conference. (See <> or call 800-473-0060 for complete conference information.) Whether you're attending the conference or just passing through Portland on vacation this summer, our guide to historical and genealogical attractions can make your visit more valuable. If you plan to do extensive genealogical research in the area, plan your steps using the Oregon Guide to Genealogical Statistics by Connie Lenzen, available from the Genealogical Forum of Oregon and at libraries.

(One special tip if you're coming for NGS: Bring your umbrella. And a raincoat wouldn't hurt. Although May is near the end of Portland's rainy season, you're likely to see some form of precipitation during your visit. But make like the natives and don't let a little water stop you!)