Adcox Auto School, circa 1918

The Adcox Auto School, circa 1918. According to the 1918 Polk Directory, Adcox Auto School was located at 275 Union Avenue North.


City of Portland (OR) Archives, A2004-002.3669.


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13 thoughts on “Adcox Auto School, circa 1918

  1. According to the new iteration of Lovejoy-Pettygrove (now called PastPortland), this address is now 1239 NE Martin Luther King.

  2. From Wikipedia:
    The Adcox Aviation Trade School was established in Portland, Oregon in the 1910s. Aircraft created there as student projects starting in the late 1920s include the Adcox 1-A, Adcox Special, Adcox Student Prince, and Adcox Cloud Buster.
    The Adcox school began as a trade school for automobile and gas-engine mechanics, but in 1920 it added a course in aviation to its curriculum, focussed on the construction and repair of airplane motors.[1]
    At different points in its history, the organisation was known as the Adcox Auto and Aviation School, the Adcox School of Aviation,[2] Aircraft Builders Corp and the First National Flying System.
    In late 1929, after a new two-story building was opened, the school had the largest enrollment of any aviation school in the Pacific Northwest, with 100 full-time students.

  3. Quite a deal. Looks like Mr Adcox allowed his students to attend for free for 4 weeks and then if they were not satisfied, would pay them .50 per hour that they attended. Probably a pretty compelling deal for the servicemen returning home.

  4. My father often spoke of his education at this institution–automotive. It served him well. Yet another interesting picture of days gone by.

  5. Hats & coats !
    Standing in the open & wait for unheated trolley in those days. Few cars had heat either and hardly weather tight.

    To the right, “Ladies Private Entrance” perhaps ??

  6. To answer igor1882’s question, I believe that the structure seen on the left was the 1st Methodist Episcopal Church, which was located on the northeast corner of Union (MLK Jr) and Multnomah. If that is the case, we’re looking at the north side of the Adcox school, which faced Wasco. The width of the building in the photo would seem to indicate this, too: we’re looking at the 50′ side of the building rather than the 100′ front of the building. I’m basing all of this off of my review of the 1908 and 1924 Sanborn fire insurance maps.

  7. My father studied diesel mechanics at the school in the mid-30s. To earn his room and board and one-way streetcar fare, he worked as the butler for the business manager for the Portland Symphony, who lived in Northwest Portland. He would frequently walk both ways to save the nickel fare. His boss required him to accompany her and her husband to the symphony. Growing up on his parents’ homestead in eastern Montana, he hadn’t heard classical music, and the first few concerts were painful, but after that he never looked back.

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