Portland looked every inch the modern, sophisticated city in this 1915 portrait featuring Pioneer Courthouse in the center. The Portland Hotel hosted well-heeled travelers to the west while the American Bank Building and the newly completed portion of the Meier & Frank Building projected wealth and prestige. This view is to the northwest and the intersection at bottom right is SW 5th and Morrison.
Archive for the ‘Morrison Street’ Category
Of all the most immediately identifiable sections of Portland’s central core area, this stretch of SW Morrison Street between 6th and 5th Avenues would be near the top of the list. This 1949 view shows the Meier & Frank building on the left with the fence and lawn of Pioneer Courthouse on the right. The next block holds the Kress department store on the left and the Corbett Building with the 5th & Morrison Fred Meyer on the right. Are those Valentine’s hearts in the M&F windows?
This tidy row of wood-frame homes was on the southeast corner of SE Morrison and 6th, c1884. The 1889 Sanborn map shows these buildings when street names at the time were N Street and Sixth Street (not Avenue). The rail line down Morrison belonged to the “Willamette Bridge R’l'y Co’s Motor Line.” A block east was a “wooden bridge on piles” that crossed a gulch and pond between Seventh and Tenth Streets. You can see that gulch across the river in this 1879 illustration.
The heart of downtown Portland is shown in this nice 1907 image; SW 5th Avenue crosses in the foreground as we look west on Morrison Street. Even though all the buildings except the Pioneer Courthouse on the left have been replaced, it’s a pretty recognizable scene even today. And as we’ve seen a number of times, today’s MAX Light Rail cars now rumble over some of the same routes that early streetcars did over a hundred years ago.
It doesn’t look like we’ll be having a white Christmas in Portland this year. This 1952 photo shows snow removal efforts on SW 6th Avenue looking north toward Morrison. Note that the Portland Hotel had been demolished on our immediate left and the new Meier & Frank parking lot was just being constructed.