The introduction of the American presence in the early Pacific Northwest has traditionally been portrayed as an exclusively Caucasian endeavor. But with the recent emergence of ethnic studies as a legitimate academic discipline and the development of competent scholars from diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds, the traditional perspectives on this period of exploration have been broadened and revised. One benefit of this new scholarship is the story of the first documented presence of a black man in the area known today as Oregon. Markus Lopius came to and died in Oregon in 1788.


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