Bird’s-eye View of Portland, 1879

E.S. Glover’s 1879 bird’s-eye view of Portland is pretty spectacular. It accurately portrays the early buildings and landscape in this growing city. It also shows some natural features such as Tanner Creek, the gullies of South Portland, and the creek outflow near present-day OMSI, that are all filled today. As always, click for hi-res version.

(Library of Congress)

9 thoughts on “Bird’s-eye View of Portland, 1879

  1. The $10.00 price on this lithograph translates to $231 in 2010 dollars. Quite a lot of money for a map / illustration.

    But what a treasure of detail.

  2. Nearly got glaucoma staring at that map, glad to have the 9999 × 6000 one. It took me a while to realize the winding stream on the east side isn’t Sullivan’s Gulch. Once I got oriented to SE 12th, Sandy and Burnside things started to become easier. Number 16 is Dr. Hawthorne’s insane asylum (large group of buildings with trees to the northeast and an empty field to the west). I was looking for Lone Fir Cemetery but unable to find it because I don’t know the street names other than Asylum is now Hawthorne and O Street is now Belmont. Strangely I was unable to find information about Portland street renaming.

  3. One of the things I noticed about the map is the way the artist made sure
    that every church steeple was represented. Many of the potential buyers of this map (the wealthy) were members of a congregation, whether it was Catholic, Episcopalian, Baptist church, or a Synagogue. The wealthy and powerful people downtown helped their various church groups to build impressive Churches and Cathedrals that would mirror their status and prosperity.
    The artist concentrated on these details so as not to loose a lucrative sale.

    The Catholic Cathedral and Archdiocese offices and library that occupied the block between Oak and Stark on Third Street are accurately depicted. The Cathedral apparently did have a huge steeple at that time, perhaps the tallest in Portland. A later 1890s era panorama appears to show the steeple, and perhaps the Cathedral in the state of being dismantled. The lone survivor of that early parish is the Bishop’s House on Stark Street.
    Such a huge Church, and such a short life 1878-1894.

  4. i inherited an original of this map. does anyone know what it might be worth? it is in great condition i think it was from the university oregon meuseum

  5. Pingback: Old + New – Photos | Landscape+Urbanism

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