OPB to feature Dory project
Oregon Field Guide will highlight “Launching Through the Surf: The Dory Fleet of Pacific City,” the unusual partnership between Linfield College students and dory fishers based in Pacific City and McMinnville.
For two years, a Linfield research team has collected oral histories from more than 80 dory fishermen and women, hoping to preserve the cultural history of one of the most unique fishing fleets in the world.
“Our students who collected oral histories came away changed,” said Brenda DeVore Marshall, a Linfield theater and communication arts professor, who directed the project. “They were really invested in the project.
“They identified with the dory fishermen and women and developed a tremendous respect for their way of life. They came to understand the importance of telling stories and how those stories help us understand each other.”
The students are now in the process of digitizing videos and photos for an online archive at Linfield. Students have also developed scholarly papers and a traveling photo exhibit, due in coastal towns this spring. They also staged an original theater production inspired by the Pacific City dory culture.
“This whole project has been a humbling experience for me,” DeVore Marshall said. “I feel privileged to have been able to work with this community of dory fishermen and women. This is a historical story we could easily lose, and yet it’s such an important part of Oregon’s past and present.”
“Launching Through the Surf: The Dory Fleet of Pacific City” was spearheaded by Linfield College, in partnership with the Pacific City Arts Association and the Pacific City Dorymen’s Association. The project is supported by a grant from the Linfield Center for the Northwest, Oregon Arts Commission and Yamhill County Cultural Coalition.