The first residents of Vanport, the largest wartime housing development in the country, moved in on December 12, 1942 (The Sunday Oregonian, 13 December 1942).
Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Larson and daughter Nancy – so obviously happy they didn’t know just where or how to begin their new housekeeping venture – Saturday became the first family to occupy an apartment in fabulous Vanport City.
But their occupancy was not just that commonplace. They were the vanguard of 30 families who Saturday and Sunday were to occupy the first of the 9914 units comprised in a housing project that will in the next few months become Oregon’s second largest city . . .
But despite the optimism, problems plagued the brand new town. The housing was shoddily constructed, racial segregation was in full effect, and in 1948 The Miracle City washed away in a devastating flood.