16 thoughts on “NE Glisan Street, 1921

  1. NE Glisan looks wider in the photo than it does today. Maybe it’s the trees now or maybe it was the way the photo was taken but still it looks very wide.

  2. I have always been pleased to see the “original light fixtures” on the arches at that intersection, but it looks like it’s not the case. They appear to have been gone 20 years after installation. Hmm.

  3. I would guess the photo is to document the hippy-dippy area of track that looks to have become a potential hazard due to weathering and subsidence.

    A corner of the Markham Home is peeking out from behind the Laurelhurst Market. It is a preservationist success story, having been endangered from years of neglect, a comparatively small floor plan, and having a sham second floor (the house started its life as a developer’s office).


  4. @Mike,

    To see just how much work McCulloch did, go to Steve’s link to the street view and check out the corner on previous dates. I agree, they did an amazing job preserving the style and look of the house while increasing the square-footage and giving it an actual second floor.

  5. I wish they had trolly-tracks in the neighborhoods, now.


    Vintage Portland posted: “NE Glisan Street at NE 32nd Avenue looking east, 1921. View this image in Efiles by clicking here.”

  6. This is a great photo! I work across the street (at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral) and we own the property that was the former Laurelhurst Market (now the Holy Trinity Annex) so this is a view we get every day. We were able to watch the total transformation of the Markham home last year. John McCulloch invited the whole neighborhood to view the finished house. He did a wonderful job!

  7. Interesting pattern of depressions in the street surface. At first glance they appear to be grates, but maybe not. If they are grates might they be related to some attempt to rectify what ever is undermining that stretch of soft track such as a spring. Beside the two (patterns) in the foreground there appears to be at least one more beyond and above. If it is a spring it may have gone unnoticed at the time of track construction due to a prolonged dry spell or perhaps it was diverted by the construction of other building. Odd. Any civil engineering historian out there that wants to take a shot.

  8. My two cents:
    The track undulations (here exaggerated by the focal length of the camera) appear to be caused by poor compaction (or lack of) of the sub base material, usually gravel .

    The fairly manual means of compaction during construction must have been much harder to accomplish in those days, and these depressions only become worse as each trolley bounces through them, over and over, daily.

    Poor compaction also causes the ‘aligatoring’ (or square cracking) of asphalt surfaces that we see today, and these effects are compounded by the presence of surface and sub surface water movement.

    Municipal maintenance teams are chasing down these factors to this day.

  9. Signs of things to come…a trolley, riding on rickety tracks,recedes into the distance, while a spiffy new Model T sits jauntily at the curb. (Yes, I know, the trolley is really headed towards us…)

  10. McCulloch (sp?) deserves credit for remodelling the Markham House, but please don’t overlook the work of the nieighbors and Friends of the Markham House, who raised a ruckus when demolition was proposed, raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy the house and spare it from demolition.

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