SW Broadway, 1964

SW Broadway between SW Washington Street and SW Alder Street looking north, 1964.


City of Portland (OR) Archives, VZ 308-64 : SW Broadway between SW Washington and SW Alder looking north, A2011-013, 1964.


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18 thoughts on “SW Broadway, 1964

  1. Wasn’t there an even more exclusive dress shop next to ‘Berg’s’ on Broadway? Was that Ungar’s before they became a fur retailer on Yamhill? My mom took me to the Broadway shop when I was 15 to find a simple black concert dress. I played in the PJS. Of course, on a public school teacher’s income we couldn’t afford my selection. The lady helping us was quick to perceive our dilemma, and offered a sweet solution. She saw that I made my own clothes and invited me to study the construction of the dress, buy some good quality fabric at Meier & Frank, and put together the dress on my own sewing machine. – which I did. Bless her!

  2. I worked at Charles F Berg around this time – during high school and college, such a beautiful building. Only store in town where you could get “name blouses” and Lanz dresses.

  3. Donna – not everyone will know what “PJS” stands for, so for those who don’t, PJS=Portland Junior Symphony, now known as the Portland Youth Philharmonic. I was a member at onetime, too. 🙂

  4. The architect for the magnificent Berg Building is always attributed to an obscure plan service out of Grand Rapids, Michigan. I ‘ve always had a hard time believing this art deco masterpiece had its origins from a mail order plan service. A little more digging through records this year revealed that while the building’s exterior was indeed supplied from a pattern book, the intricate terra cotta designs on the surface were from none other than A.E. Doyle, the city’s pre-eminent architect of the time. Mystery solved. Check out the designs up close some time. They are deco/cubist takes on Northwest icons: clouds and falling rain, ocean waves, fiddlehead ferns and, inexplicably, peacocks — perhaps a reference to the upscale ladies’ finery sold by the Berg Co.? This art deco building could stand up to the very best of deco designs anywhere on the West Coast.

  5. Kenn Portland converted to a one way traffic pattern for the downtown business district on Monday 2/27/50. The one way grid went from SW 1st to SW 14th & from NW Hoyt to SW Columbia, which improved traffic flow, and reduced vehicle and pedestrian accidents. Portland transportation dept. indicates that street cars were also history in 1950.

  6. “I was a member at onetime, too. 🙂”

    What a wonderful experience it was! I was in the violin section.

  7. A interesting portrait of Portland at the end of the long 1950’s. 1964, just prior to Vietnam exploding into the national conscience. The year that those great ’50s cars would accelerate their final trip to the salvage yards to be melted down for the trip to Japan only to return in increasing numbers resurrected and labeled “made in Japan”. That VW just behind the Ford Falcon and other European badges having shown the way.
    The green step van at the curb is among the last new trucks purchased by the Railway Express Agency, by the time of this photo rebranded as REA. Ownership of REA was shared among all the major railroads and dating from the horse and buggy era, their delivery vehicles were ubiquitous all across the nation in every city, town and burg, based at or near the railroad station, they existed to deliver packages and express from passenger and express trains. They even handled cadavers, the expression, “so and so rode home on the mail train” refers to a dead person’s remains shipped home for burial on REA. In 1964 many of the large railroads were in bankruptcy or downsizing and passenger trains were in rapid decline everywhere and the express business suffered accordingly. REA would fight on for a few more years until the end in 1975.
    Not much has changed in this scene from 1954, but gong forward to 1974, 1964 looks quaint in the rearview mirror

  8. Joan, it was a pneumatic tube system. No cash or registers on the floors, it was all in the basement. You put the customers money or “charge card” into the tube along with a handwritten receipt and sent it down. They sent back the receipt and any change.

  9. Susan that is so cool way a head of its time no cash registers on the floors why was it done like that at Joan ?

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