Neppach House, 1928

The 1883 Neppach House hotel dominated the northwest corner of NW Third and W Burnside in 1928. Upper floors were hotel and other lodging under a number of names over the years with storefronts at street level. It lost 20 feet of its front during the 1930s Burnside widening and the subsequent remodel made it virtually unrecognizable. It survived until the mid 2000s. The three-story brick hotel on the right still stands as part of the Union Gospel Mission.

(City of Portland Archives)

12 thoughts on “Neppach House, 1928

  1. The Neppach House was a near twin to the Sinnot House, aka the first Simon building, that is on Third and Couch. The word house in both cases is used as a synonym for hotel or inn, and was once common term. There was a rumor a year or so back that the Sinnot House was going to be restored and made into a hotel, which would be a fine return to form. I have not heard anything recently on its status though.

  2. Great photo Dan D.. I’m trying to remember what this building looked like just before it was demolished. Dan H, thanks for the extra info. It appears you can see a small slice of the Sinnott House in the far right background.

    It seems that buildings affected by the widening of Burnside took the opportunity to “modernize.” Hence the Spanish flair to the Grove Hotel and the now-hidden art deco revamping of the buidling that currently houses St. Vincent DePaul. The first photo of the Associated gas station shows this building in it’s heyday.

  3. Jim – I added a link to the post that shows the building after the widening and remodel. It looked pretty much the same into the 21st century except all the windows were boarded up.

  4. Dan,

    Thanks for adding the link. I dare say, the Neppach’s post-widening make-over was startlingly ahead of its time. It looks just like cheap 70’s apartments*. In this case, it’s a shame the remodel couldn’t have retained the flavor of the original.

    Looking at the 1928 photo, it looks like this may not have been a particularly “good” part of town. I see what I think are a pawn shop and “tatto” parlor. Of course, if I’m not mistaken, this block is just west of the infamous north end bars and cribs area. Erickson’s Saloon (at its height) occupied all of the buidlings on the entire block between Second and First and Burnside and Couch. Jewel Lansing’s history recounts the tale of an obnoxiously drunken Swedish visitor who kept getting thrown out of Ericksons by the same bouncer. He apparently would just go to the next entrance and try to re-enter. When he was tossed from the last entrance, he turned to the bouncer and said (paraphrased): “Do you work in every d*mn bar in Portland?”

    *Obviously, “the opinions expressed above by this commentor are his alone and not necessarily endorsed by the author of this blog.”

  5. still has a photo of the old building. I’ve uploaded it here.

    Here’s a photo I took in 1974 (although it could have been as early as 1968) of a few of the area’s residents in front of the building when it was the Camp Hotel. The checkerboard tile pattern is clearly visible in the post-widening photo.
    309 W. Burnside, 1974

  6. Wow. 1928…Mickey Mouse appears in Steamboat Willie, Enthronement ceremony of Japanese Emperor Hirohito is held, Alexander Fleming discovers Penicillin, Charles Lindbergh is presented the Medal of Honor for his first trans-Atlantic flight.

    Check out the dapper dressed, white gloved US Marine on the corner.

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