Today we have an aerial of the airport on Swan Island and Mocks Bottom. This images was taken on February 7, 1935. You get a great view of the Swan Island Airport, Mocks Bottom, and the oil company docks in Northwest Portland.
The Portland of circa 1926 is familiar to us today but oh, so many changes! All of our downtown river crossings were in place, including a new Burnside Bridge. It would be another three-quarters of a century before all the rails in Northwest would be ripped up to create the Pearl District. The west side seawall was only a few years from realization, and the relentless march of the bulldozers had yet to create the patchwork of surface parking lots that in many cases still exist. On the east side, the riverfront was still highly industrial, Albina was untouched, and it would be decades before freeways cut off much of this area from the river.
Yesterday’s location at SW Barbur Blvd. & Bancroft Street can be seen in this terrific aerial view from roughly above OHSU looking eastward. The main east-west street below us is Bancroft while Terwilliger and Barbur are the main streets that cross from left to right. The large building near the upper-right is the old Holman Public School. The manufacturing plant along the river sits about where the Old Spaghetti Factory and the South Waterfront district are now.
Here’s a pretty aerial view of Southwest and Southeast Portland along the Willamette in 1963. The Marquam Bridge was still under construction and both banks of the river were generally much more industrialized than they are now. Lots of good detail to soak up in this beauty.
This 1932 proposal for a Memorial Park and Civic Center never made it past the model stage. This image (west is up) shows the Portland Heights neighborhood at top right and veteran’s hospital complex at left bottom. Note that the path of the proposed Foothill Boulevard at right closely matches the path of today’s Foothill Freeway (I-405) which wouldn’t appear for another 30 years.