Fire Station 3, 1950

The Portland Fire Department appears to be showing off its new 1950 American LaFrance fire engine in front of Station 3 at 1425 NW Glisan. The 1913 building is now the home of Touché Restaurant. In fact all the buildings you can see in this photo are still standing.

(City of Portland Archives)

NE Sandy Blvd, 1952

The Hollywood Theater still stands on NE Sandy Blvd, as it has since 1926, but the building just west of it, at 41st Street, is gone. The Hollywood Building on the right was “modernized” at some time over the years and lost its graceful arched entryway.

(City of Portland Archives)

Aerial View of Portland, 1949

This is a nicely detailed 1949 aerial photo of Portland looking north over the downtown area. The push to raze buildings for parking lots had not begun in earnest and the era of the skyscrapers was another couple decades away. A fabulous snapshot of the time.

(City of Portland Archives)

John W. Kern Home, 1948

Here are two beautiful personal (non-professional) photos of the Captain John W. Kern home before it was demolished in 1949. The processor’s date stamped on the back is “August 4, 1948.” The mansion was located on SE Powell between 29th & 30th. Thanks to Bud Holland, who grew up in the neighborhood, for sending these great photos.

(Bud Holland)

Pacific Building, c1926

This gorgeous photo features the brand-new Pacific Building, on SW Yamhill between 5th and 6th Avenues. Taken from the courtyard of the Portland Hotel (a bit of which peeks out from the right side), it also shows the Pioneer Courthouse and those comfort stations on the corner.

(University of Oregon Libraries)

19th Century Houses – Mystery Location

The location of these two homes-turned-businesses (shown here in 1973) should prove no great challenge to the astute VP fan. According to, both of these houses date to 1888. Both are still intact in the Portland area.

(University of Oregon Libraries)

Pittock Block Excavation, 1913

This massive excavation was a three-story sub-basement for the Pittock Block, which originally housed the Northwestern Electric Company’s electric sub-station and west side distribution plant. Portland newspaper publisher Henry Pittock’s home was on this site before construction began. This view looks down on the corner of SW 10th and Washington, facing northeast. I’d featured a cropped version of this image previously; VP fan Mike Slama was kind enough to point me to this full version.

(University of Oregon Libraries)