19 thoughts on “SW 4th Avenue, 1964

  1. Maybe I’m looking at this wrong, but something doesn’t make sense to me. The cars on the left on Alder street are going the opposite direction from what Google maps shows today. Are we sure this is Alder? Did the direction change at some point?


  2. This was taken just before this block was demolished in 1964. The view is from Washington Street. The building at the far end of the block on the left was the third incarnation of the famed Holton House hotel, opened by Dan Holton (1837-1901) in 1884. After that it was operated briefly by Richard Perkins and it was later known as The Belvedere Hotel.

  3. i’m sure some of you had them, so can somebody identify the two cars flanking the corvair greenbriar van? they look sorta like early and late bel-airs, but aren’t.
    the two stars of the day, however, are entering stage left: a ‘pre-a’ porsche 356 (the most coveted model), and just behind it, a vw type 34 karmann ghia. that car was never sold in the us; you had to bring it as a servicemember, or drive one down from canada. fewer than 2000 are left worldwide. ironically, it was so popular among g.i.s that the bulk of the surviving type 34s are in the states!

  4. Looks like there’s a Plymouth Fury there. 1958? Reminds me of the Stephen King movie “Christine”.

  5. I looked in the book: Images of America/Theatres of Portland. The Circle Theater was definitely on 4th, just south of Washington. The Blue Mouse down the street at Morrison was originally called the Capitol. The Blue Mouse was originally on 11th but when it was torn down, the owner leased the Capitol (1957) and renamed it the Blue Mouse moving his original sign.

  6. The two-story building on the corner is the remnant of the 1889 Washington Building that underwent a complete transformation in the 1930s, after which the second floor became home to Frank L. McGuire’s real estate firm and the building was renamed for McGuire,

  7. Buddies and I spent Saturday’s at the Blue Mouse for the features (western’s mostly I recall). This would be the late 40’s, maybe real early 50’s. But I thought I remembered that the Blue Mouse was between 1oth and 12th on Washington, not far from the original Coney Island and London Boot store (where boys bought their English brogues which were in vogue along with the Lipman and Wolfe colored Stradivarius shirts and matching colored suede belts (which the mom’s had to half the belt loops on the Levi’s so the belt would fit properly!!). Oregon Journal Juniors going strong back then too at the theatre on Grand and Morrison?

  8. I believe that red and white hardtop is a 57 or 58 Buick Special, hard to tell from this shot. Don’s memory of the Blue Mouse as a second run house for shoot’em up westerns seems correct to me. The Circle as I recall specialized in second run film noir and both theaters always had double features. Those Strads, brogues, pencil thin belts along with a White Stag Jacket were the acme of teenage style in the late 40’s and early 50’s

  9. My brother and I agree that this shot was taken from 4th and Washington looking south. My family owned the Star Furniture Company which was located across 4th, between Alder and Morrison, from the Blue Mouse. This photo shows the Blue Mouse at least 1 1/2 blocks south, which places the picture at least at Washington Street.

  10. The red and white car to the left of the Corvair Greenbriar is a 1955 Buick Super or Roadmaster two door hardtop. On the right side is a 1959 Plymouth Custom Suburban station wagon and to it’s right is a 1962 Mercury Monterey.

  11. Don: As I said in my post, the Blue Mouse was on 11th. When it was torn down, the Capitol Theatre on 4th became the Blue Mouse (1957 or so). I think the theatre on Grand and Morrison was the Oriental. This theatre served the city well for concerts and the like while the Civic Auditorium (now the Keller) was being rebuilt. I wish I had been raised in Portland during the heyday of the great movie palaces.

  12. Star Furniture Company, sponsor of the weekly talent show “Stars of Tomorrow with Mr. Day” on KPOJ (1330 KC on the dial) every Saturday morning. My sister sang on that program several times.

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