19 thoughts on “SW 1st Avenue, 1946

  1. Two hours later (to the minute) than usual — I wonder if the VP’s computer “sprang ahead” rather than “fell back?”

  2. The year is around 1955 or 56. There’s a 55 Chevy to the right of the streetcar, and I see what looks to be a mid-50s Olds down the street on the right.

  3. And not just “any” streetcar. As it turns out, the last streetcar running in our region. Final run between Portland and Oregon City January 25, 1956. My dad had a sense of history and made certain that we rode the last car on that last run.
    4001 is freshly restored and running tours at the Western Railway Museum Suisun City, CA. A very fun three day visit this last spring. Enjoy.

  4. Good catch. If this picture is 1946 then some of the people in the picture bought their cars through the Amazon Time Machine. Good picture. With a ’55 Chev parked on the right curb, this could be the last run of car 4001.

  5. This is actually looking West on SW Madison. You can see the tower of the First Congregational Church and the rooftop sign for the Sovereign Hotel in the distance. I would even hazard that this intersection is looking towards Second, not First, with the trees of Chapman Square up the street on the right.

  6. I remember that my aunt used to take that train from Oregon City to visit us in Portland. This would’ve been c. 1957-58. My memory doesn’t go much farther back than that.

  7. I suspect that you’ve had a bunch of correspondence with this same message, but that car that is peaking out from behind the street car is a ’55 Chevy — Not a good fit with the estimated 1946 vintage for the photo.

    Thanks for a wonderful service — I look forward to it every day!

    Fred Keast

  8. Everyone was so busy looking at the cars they didn’t look at the picture. If that’s 1st and Main, where’s the Elk Fountain? If that’s 1st and Main why can you see the tower of the 1st Congregational Church up the street on the right?

    That’s a block south on 1st and… 𝑴𝑨𝑫𝑰𝑺𝑢𝑡.

  9. “I’m just gonna throw this picture up. year, location? meh, it’s all the same, they’ll figure it out, they always do..”

  10. @Dave Brunker: “Everyone was so busy looking at the cars they didn’t look at the picture. ”

    Everyone except Jim, you mean? πŸ™‚

  11. Brian:

    I must have been half asleep when I read through all this. I remember seeing the link that went half way off the page (a WordPress problem) then looking at the picture of the demolition and thinking, “OK that’s a cool picture but what’s it have to do with today’s post?”


    Sorry, about that. I was thinking to myself, “That’s weird. How is it that I was the only one who noticed the post listed the wrong street? This is Vintage Portland, people here notice everything!”

  12. No problem, Dave. Just look at how many people pointed out the ’55 Chevy. At least you picked up the slack where I left off and posted the current street view from Googlemaps.

  13. my understanding is that the last run was in 1958. train stopped running into downtown portland after they raised hawthorne bridge approach for i 5 and tore up the trolley tracks. folks had to transfer to a bus to get downtown

  14. A silly thing but I am curious about the actual year. I am going to share this photo with my siblings. We lived on the corner of 1st and Madison. Our family is actually sitting in this building as the photo was taken. We lived there from 1954-1965,

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