12 thoughts on “Albina Neighborhood Improvement Council, 1964

  1. The e-files copy of this photo identifies three of the people as Lula Mae Crane, Roosevelt Rogers, and Emil H. Thiel.

    “ Lula Mae Crane — Mrs. Joseph Crane, Mrs. J.C. Crane and Mrs. Crane are all names that are used for Lula Mae Crane in the ANIIC-Dope, the Albina Neighborhood Improvement Information Center newsletters. The Albina Neighborhood Improvement Program (ANIP) was a neighborhood rehabilitation project that was started in 1961 by the Albina Neighborhood Council and the Portland Development Commission which lasted until 1971. Throughout the newsletters, Lula Crane’s name is consistently present in different variations. She was active in her community during the project and served as a leader in her community. She was a Block Leader, co-chair of the Executive Board for the ANIP Committee, Vice Chairman for the Albina Neighborhood Council, and served as a member of the ANIP Tree Committee. She facilitated meetings in her home and presented to City Council about ANIP matters. Although the project started in 1961, it is not until 1964 that we see her full name in the newsletter for the first and only time.

    Tracing women’s history is difficult for many reasons, including how women are identified. It is common for women to change their birth name and adopt their husband’s name, often only being recognized by the husband’s name with a “Mrs.” attached. Lula Crane is an example of one of the challenges to researching women. The information [we] have on Lula Crane comes from the Portland Development Commission Albina Neighborhood Improvement Program records.”

    ———- https://www.portlandoregon.gov/archives/article/757490

  2. And here’s Roosevelt Roger’s obituary from The Oregonian, Sept. 12, 1982, p. 80:

    The Rev. Roosevelt Rogers, 79, a Baptist minister long active in civic affairs of Portland’s black community, died Wednesday in a Portland hospital. Mr. Rogers was born in Scott, Ark. He worked as a janitor and chauffeur before moving to the Portland area in 1943, where he was ordained. He was associated for approximately 30 years with the Vancouver Avenue First Baptist Church as a member and associate minister. He served also as a loan officer with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, as a co-chairman of the Albina Neighborhood Improvement Committee and worked with the Urban League, all of which honored him with awards for civic duty. He was active also in the Albina Ministerial Alliance…. He is survived by a son, Ted, and 14 grandchildren. Another son, William B., died Sept. 7

  3. Here is the obituary for Emil H. Thiel, from The Oregonian, June 3, 1981, p. 65

    Funeral for Emil H. Thiel, retired roofer and supervisor for the Portland Housing Authority until he retired in 1956, will be at 10 a.m. Friday at the Gateway Little Chapel of the Chimes. Interment will be in Rose City Cemetery. Mr. Thiel, who was 86, died Monday in a Portland hospital. A native of Minnesota, he moved to Portland in 1942 and was a member of the Roofers’ Union. Surviving are two daughters…and four sons; 16 grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren.

    Any VP readers know who the other two people at the table are?

  4. Liz you are correct there is scant information in news archives for Lula Mae Crane, but her are a few details. Here date of birth is November 16, 1909 with a unknown location, and she died December 26, 1986 in Portland. There was a obit. in the Oregonian for her husband. Joseph C Crane died October 15, 1979 at the age of 63 , and he was a car man for Burlington Northern Railroad. Mr Crane was born in Simsboro La. and came to Portland in 1952 and lived at 3735 N Vancouver Ave. Surviving are his wife Lula Mae, son B.J., daughter Gracie B. Berry, and mother Gracie Crane of Louisiana.

  5. Hi, Dennis — You’ve added some good details. Thanks! Regarding the “scant information” comment, I was just quoting the website I cited at the end of my Lula Mae entry. This would have been clearer had I prefaced the second paragraph with quotation marks. I did substitute the [we] in that paragraph where the original mysteriously had the word “new”

  6. We’ve seen a photo from the alley cleanup posted on the wall before. This one’s not posted, but it’s the same location (3732 and 3738 N Kerby Avenue):

  7. Liz the 1964 ANIC DOPE newsletter list the executive board members as follows. E.H. Thiel — Rev. Roosevelt Rogers — Father Mell Stead — Lula Mae Crane (Mrs. Crane) — Len Soneson who replaced Rev Graham on the board. The people in this photo I think are from Left to Right are Rev. Graham ( a photo in the newsletter of Mr Soneson shows he is white, and would have been 68 in 1964) Lula Mae Crane, E.H. Thiel, Rev. Roosevelt Rogers and Father Mel Stead.

  8. This is great, Dennis! I wonder if the description on the e-file copy could be amended to add the Rev. Graham and Father Mel Stead?

  9. And here is an obituary for Father Stead:

    Born: May 28, 1930
    Died: August 1, 2008

    “Father Mell Stead … died on Friday, August 1st, at his home at St. John Vianney Residence in Beaverton, Oregon. Father Stead, who retired four years ago, had been dealing with various illnesses. …

    “Mell Stead was born on May 28, 1930 in Kewanee, Illinois, the son of Mell Stead Sr. and Alice Engels. … He began his college seminary as a student for the Archdiocese of Portland at Immaculate Conception Seminary, Conception Missouri. He graduated from college there in 1952 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He continued his theological studies at Conception and was ordained to the priesthood there on May 26, 1956….

    “Father Stead’s first assignment … was as Associate Pastor of Immaculate Heart Parish, Portland, from August, 1956 until February of 1958, when he was named Administrator of the parish. He served as administrator of Immaculate Heart until 1967, when he was named Pastor, a post he held until 1970. …

    “In his first assignment at Immaculate Heart, Father Stead became sensitized to the concerns of the African American community in North Portland. He became well known as one of their sincere advocates in the difficult times of the 60’s.”


  10. Liz here is more info on Rev. Graham. Rev, Tecumseh X Graham (T X Graham) was the pastor of A.M.E. Zion Church in Portland. If you go to the Multnomah County Library Gallery section and enter T X Graham there is a November 8, 1961 group photo with T X Graham standing next Dr. Martin Luther King, and it sure looks like the man in today’s photo.

  11. Good find on the Martin Luther King visit, Dennis!

    I was able to find a little about Rev. Graham, using the Multnomah County Public Library’s digital resource, Ancestry Library Edition. Among several listings, there is one from the Ohio Death Records, 1908-1932, 1938-2018, which states that
    Tecumseh X Graham Sr was born in Washington, D.C. on March 14, 1925, and died at home on June 14, 1998 in Cincinnati, Ohio. His occupation was listed as clergy, working for religious organizations. His parents’ surnames were Graham (father) and Reeves (mother). He had a son, Tecumseh X Graham, Jr., born in 1957. (So his son would have been an elementary school student when today’s VP photo was taken, and about 4 years old when Dr. King visited.)

  12. Liz Here is Rev Grahams Obit. from the Cincinnati Post June 16, 1998

    The Rev. Tecumseh X Graham, a former Cincinnati Public School Board president, and Cincinnati City Council member, died Sunday at age 73.

    Since retiring, the Washington D.C. native has received several community honors, including being named a African American Lion by the Urban League of greater Cincinnati, and the Charles P. Taft award for outstanding contributions to ecumenism for the Council of Christian Communions.

    Rev. Graham was a graduate of Hood Theological Seminary and Livingston College.
    While on the school board, he helped appoint black principals in high schools and to include black history in the regular curriculum. He moved to City Hall, replacing former Democrat James Cissell in 1978. He lost a re-election bid in 1979.

    A former vice chairman of the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission, Rev. Graham also taught at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University.
    He leaves his wife, Loreda, son Tecumseh X Graham Jr., of Houston Texas, daughter Marjorie Graham Henry of Cincinnati, brother D’Anthony Graham of Middleburg N. Y. and 2 grandchildren.

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