20 thoughts on “SW 6th Avenue, circa 1941

  1. In addition to the parking garage and the Apostolic Faith building, another building in this photo which still exists is the Arata Brothers/Century Oil Burners building just to the south of the parking garage. Today it is missing it’s cornice and is almost completely hidden behind a colorful mural. PortlandMaps dates the building to 1904, and Arata Brothers (a wholesale liquor shop) dates to at least 1915 per our website.

    The building closest to us in the photo (on the northwest corner of Oak & 6th) was either demolished or reduced to a single-story and remodeled beyond recognition. PortlandMaps lists the year built of the current building as 1958, but I came across a 1957 Oregonian article detailing how the building on the site – the “Financial Center Building” – was undergoing a heavy renovation.

    The storefronts where Smith and Corona Typewriters was is Little Bird Bistro and Bunk Sandwiches today.

  2. The person on the bicycle looks to be one of the downtown bike messengers that used to deliver documents and paperwork between various offices.

  3. Greg, and in true Portland fashion, it looks like he is running the red light. Actually, there are still bike messengers downtown today, as well as bike based delivery services, hauling bread and bottled water among other commodities.

  4. Ron, how very true on the red light comment. I can also remember them weaving in and out of traffic cutting across multiple lanes using no hand signals. I didn’t know they still existed today, but thinking about it with Portland’s bike culture it doesn’t surprise me though. Do they still have the baskets in front of the handlebars kind of like the ones from the Wizard Of Oz?

  5. The June 2012 picture different then this one but I think it was taken the same day because the Bohmans truck is in both.

  6. Greg, I have seen messenger bikes with heavy duty “Wizard Of Oz” baskets and others with a large bag on the back of the rider with the name of the delivery service plastered across it. There are bike taxi services as well.

  7. And many of the same people on the sidewalks. It appears the June 2012 photo was taken just a minute or two after today’s.

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