63 thoughts on “Help Us Out!

  1. I’m not sure that really lines up. If it’s Colonel Summers Park, the houses in the background would be on Belmont… yes?

  2. Lents?

    From: Vintage Portland To: stuandi97@yahoo.com Sent: Friday, February 12, 2016 6:00 AM Subject: [New post] Help Us Out! #yiv9774661544 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv9774661544 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv9774661544 a.yiv9774661544primaryactionlink:link, #yiv9774661544 a.yiv9774661544primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv9774661544 a.yiv9774661544primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv9774661544 a.yiv9774661544primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv9774661544 WordPress.com | Vintage Portland posted: “Can anyone tell us where this unidentified wading pool is located? This image is was taken circa 1929.  View this image in Efiles by clicking here.” | |

  3. none of the houses match up to any street around summers that i could find, and most of the current homes look to be predating the park… tho there are several areas of complete redevelopment, the sun angle is wrong for most. and the structure to the far left (which looks like a restroom or maintenance structure) is too far from the pool to be the pavillion in summers. they might have moved it or torn the old one down, however.

  4. Could it be Woodstock park. There was a pool like that with a park house in the vicinity

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  5. the pool could be completely gone by now. if the building to the left is still there, that would be the best clue. i would add the neat victorian with the spire in the background, but it is likely gone ( i was checking sellwood for a similar building, and from googleearth, sellwood looks like it has been carpet-bombed).

  6. wherever it is, it is very sad… there is an african-american child standing in center left, all alone. not dressed for swimming, but looking pretty sad regardless.

    if he’s not the child of park staff, it would likely place the park near an area where african-americans were allowed to live.

  7. summers would make sense, but… i think we are looking at the SW or SE (i think SW, personally) corner of a park, towards a street corner – based on the feeder power poles in background. SE 17th and taylor fills the bill if we assume the left-hand structure has been razed, but i have not found a match for any of the houses on the south side of taylor. there are many dutch colonials today, likely built before the photo, but not IN the photo.

    in any case, this isn’t the current splash pad, as it is too close to the sidewalk; and the photographer couldn’t be on the sidewalk of taylor, facing north, as there is no street – and no power poles – facing the park to the north.

    after looking at many parks from the air, i am starting to think neither of these structures exists, which makes it kinda hard to identify the park!

    we could also be looking NW, in late afternoon. but not NE, so at least that rules out ONE thing!

  8. It’s not Colonel Summers. This view is probably looking southwest judging by the shadows, and the pool there is close to Taylor St. on the south.

  9. Those pools were usually built for sailboats, not wading. But who could resist wading on a warm day? Good for toddlers on tricycles in the winter if it wasn’t raining.

  10. How about Grant park? We’d be looking SW at the houses on 33rd. The slope of the street matches. Unfortunately I can’t see any of the houses from street view. That whole stretch along 33rd is planted in deciduous trees like what’s depicted.

  11. grant park is a possibility – but the date is wrong, then. the majority of houses along 33rd were built 26 – 30, and we should see at least one demo or construction… the trees around the pool are a very close match, but are closer to the rim than the current trees.

  12. i also think 33rd is too flat – all those houses have steps up from the street, and then steps to the porch.

    the victorian is on a corner – find it, and we find the park!

  13. Other reasons it’s not Grant: the pool at Grant is up a slope from the street, and the houses on 33rd are far newer than the ones here. These look like they were built before 1900. We need to look in a part of the city that was built up some time around 1890 or so. The houses may be gone now or some may be left.

  14. behind the child at center left is a square structure – possibly newer, or commercial – with a garage underneath and dug into the hill.

    i checked brooklyn park… so many newer buildings it is hard to tell. there is a tuck-under garage under a late 40-ish house on SE10th , but the house next door to it doesn’t match the rooflines in the pic.

  15. Hmmm. The houses to the right of the pool are too close for Col Sumners unless they tore them down to make room for the community gardens that are there now, but the slope of the hills fits Col Sumner. A bit of a mystery

  16. That’s the old wading pool at Peninsula Park (looking left you see the main building and behind that is Portland Blvd) . Or as we called it, the pee pool. The new water feature they put over it is way cooler, I gotta say.

  17. peninsula park is a pretty good candidate – especially if you remember it! but it has problems: when did they expand the main building? the wings are not visible in the pic. building is different to begin with. the trees nearby are conifers, not deciduous (but they look young enough to have been planted 50 – 60s). all the houses west of the park tend to date from 1942, so no way to confirm. lastly, and this is a nail in the coffin for me, if that is the main building to the left, we are looking NE, and the sun is setting nearly in the north.
    also if we are looking east, houses would have to be on kerby, which seems too far away, they were mostly bungalows built in 1924, and none are in this photo.

  18. It seems strange that they would plant a Horse Chestnut (on left) so close to the pool. It would have caused damage within a few years. Not to mention the jagged hulls and ankle spraining nuts falling into the water every Summer.

  19. This post makes me realize how many different parks in Portland I used to go to. Usually to go swimming. I know I’ve seen that small building on the left before. Just can’t remember where.

  20. dawson has possibilities. the pavillion -resembles- the building to left in photo, the streets nearby have often have steps up from the sidewalk (or did!), an african-american boy would be able to live nearby, the age of the neighborhood is right, and all those trees are horse chestnuts!

    the park has been extensively rebuilt, if so; the pavillion and pool can’t be in the same relative locations, or again we are looking at a north pole sunset. they could have torn down the old park structure and rebuilt the new one along its lines. and of course all but 3 of the neighborhood buildings are new, so no way to confirm.

  21. dawson park is tantalizing. sanborn 1908=09 vol 3 sheet 268: catholic young man’s athletic park. 3 victorians across the street, and the one on the corner has a porch, a bay and a turret! also, i knew that house was on a corner, but so were the power poles; morris takes a jog around the park in that EXACT location. we are looking east, tho, which means the sun is pretty far north. it could be the end of a long, hot summer’s day, but it doesn’t look ‘sunsetty’ in the pic, so that’s a problem. there is a house at the SW corner, but it is not as good a match.

    off to slog through the 1924 volumes to look for the park structures and see what direction we are looking.

  22. nothing on the 1924 maps, BUT the 24 – 50 maps, vol 6 sheet 617 has a structure on the west marked ‘handball court’ with a restroom on each side, EXACTLY as pictured here. pool is flammable, so isn’t marked! the NW corner of the park ALSO has a jog in vancouver at morris, there is a victorian with a porch on the corner (although i am not as happy with the outlines of adjacent houses). so we are looking NW, which puts the time of day as late afternoon.

    all the buildings visible are long gone, so there is no proof unless we find a photo of the handball court – but i think this is about as good a match as we are likely to get.

  23. I believe it is Montavilla Park located at the intersection of NE 82nd Ave & NE Glisan St. If you go to GoogleEarth and search on the location of the Park, the round circle where the pool once was is still visible.

  24. circle is too close to the modern pavillion… doesn’t mean they didn’t move stuff around when big pool was built.

    but the area around montavilla is flat, and the houses in the pic are on small rises. i looked all around montavilla, and no block for a good distance has sidewalks elevated from street level.

  25. whoops, no text. that’s Dawson Park on the right edge. I can’t see the turret on the house on the corner, but I think I can see the gable just to the right of it?

  26. My comment was directed to the Stanton Pic. I walked by that church often at Lunch and Assumed the church on the corner Predated or Parish, St, James in Vancouver

  27. nice catch, lefty. the park building is almost certainly the same, but i don’t know when they rebuilt it to today’s form (late 80s?) the current building -could- be as old as 1974. the power poles match! there is even a short pole just past the building to the north, i assume for guy wires.

    the picture is just too blurry to say anything about the victorian house; i think it is behind the tree on the corner, anyways.

    the fact that there is still a row of houses on that block, and the commercial building on the NE corner , means we might yet find a recognizable photo of that section taken from street level. did the city document the razing, or did emanuel?

  28. Well now that I’ve generated a list of at least 40 Portland parks that had that these round wading pools, Dawson park was not on the list. So I tried to prove that first. And I was able to!
    is a photo of Gloria and Izeal Campbell in Dawson Park wading pool in 1952. So at the very least we know there was one there…

  29. i think jane was right about it being dawson – that house in lefty’s second photo is beyond a doubt visible in the 1929 photo. the house to its left is in the 1929 photo. and i bet that object behind the red monkey bars is the turret of the victorian.

    since this picture was taken facing NW, i think we have a definitive match.

  30. so jane, what made you pick dawson? had you been there, or was it, like the exploding penguin on the telly, an inspired guess?

  31. Hi all! Thanks for all the incredible sleuthing, especially the photo of the students in the park to seal the deal. To answer your question wl, I used Portland Parks and Rec historical information to start, and searched only east side parks at first, then eliminating any parks that hadn’t been acquired by 1920, which didn’t leave very many. From there I instinctively went to North Portland and specifically the Albina neighborhood as it’s one of our oldest and was once incorporated as a city in itself. Basically, the flatness of the terrain, the age and style of the homes (and spacing between them), especially the Victorian were all clues to where the park was located. Montavilla and Col Sumner were about the only two other contenders but didn’t match in so many ways. The homes around Peninsula and Pier Park eliminated them almost immediately. I think when given the challenge us history nerds can solve just about any PDX mystery! 🙂

  32. This pool was/is located in Alberta Park off of NE Killingsworth. Vernon Elementary school is south of the park. I spent many happy hours there.

  33. Hi Michael! You got me thinking. So I did a little more sleuthing. Alberta Park is a good contender, but the homes just don’t match up as far as age and style. Happy to hear that you had great memories at Alberta Park. It’s such a beautiful neighborhood.

  34. No one has mentioned Laurelhurst Park; it has a (now empty) wading pool like this. I don’t think the houses match, though.

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