30 thoughts on “NE 42nd Avenue

  1. I remembered all the businesses except for Bit of Sweden. We got our shoes at Alex Volchok around the corner by the Hollywood theater. The back of his store opened on the one-way alley.

  2. I believe the building on the left is the back and east side of the Hollywood Theater. Those are the doors we would use after watching Saturday morning matinees in the mid-1950s. I can still taste the all-day suckers they sold for, I think, a nickel.

  3. That intersection has always been an awkward mess. In 1956 they sure had a whole lot of traffic signage! A little better today – and not so ugly – but I still avoid as much as possible.

  4. This was and would continue to be at the west bound end of the Banfield for several more years before the completion of the freeway. That is reflected in the condition of the roadway shown here. The passage of so many heavy vehicles has taken it’s toll on a pavement that was not up to the strain.

  5. Have made that right turn many times over the years. Eventually you wait for the red light to cross Sandy Blvd. across from where Mark Lindsey (of Paul Revere and the Raiders) was gonna locate his combo restaurant and deejay booth a few years ago.

  6. Also if you let go of your shopping cart in certain spots at Hollywood Fred Meyers it would start rolling as the floor was canted in some areas.

  7. The two cars facing the camera on the right parked in the lot (1956 Mercury Monterey and the 1955 DeSoto FireFlite) are parked so close together that the owner of the DeSoto would not be able to open their driver’s side door to get in.

    It’s interesting to read all the comments made on this post by all the folks who have childhood memories of this area. That sign alerting drivers to the light around the corner is amusing and kinda funny.

  8. Anyone remember the Chin’s Kitchen delivery vans? Early 60’s Ford Econoline vans with a stylized Chinese eye on both front doors.

  9. The Bit of Sweden restaurant (“Portland’s original Smorgasboard”) was located directly across from Harold Kelly’s appliance store at 1744 NE 42nd Ave. The restaurant was incorporated into a former residential bungalow which is still there (now a dentist’s office). The restaurant opened in 1935 and closed, I think, in 1961 per press coverage in The Oregonian. The owner (son of the founder Anna Nelson) auctioned off the furniture and fixtures and sold the premises after the OLCC of the day refused to grant him a liquor license for unknown reasons. I grew up in this area and never got to go there, but it was evidently a popular dining out spot. The Swedish Crown Prince and former VP Nixon were cited as a couple of the restaurant’s former patrons.

  10. Thanks for the Bit of Sweden info. It kinda rings a bell. I, too, grew up on the edges of the Hollywood District, first on Euclid Avenue (where Halsey and 47th intersect) and then on 49th (where 49th and Thompson converge on Sandy Blvd.) Back in the day when a gaggle of kids with no parents could head down to the theater for the Saturday matinee and then maybe sneak over to Vic’s Hobby Shop to admire the HO Gauge trains before heading home.

  11. Ah, 1956, the year I met my future bride whose family lived on Fremont. The family frequently brought food home from Chin’s Kitchen. They also bought a piano from the music store in the old bank building which she recalls as being Joseph Lucas. When one could work on their own car!!! Fondly remember those years (and Yaw’s)

  12. In 1961, I took my driver’s test to get my driver’s license. The route went north on 42nd to this intersection. I was told to turn right onto Broadway and head east. I didn’t see the traffic light just around the corner and went through a red light (maybe it was a blinking red light). I also failed to signal after parallel parking in the DMV parking lot. Both infractions were worth 5 points, so I ended up scoring 90 on the exam. It was good enough to be issued a driver’s license.
    Here it is, 59 years later and I’ve never gotten a ticket (although there were probably times when I should have).

    One more little thing. See the sign on the right side of the photo that says PARK. It has an arrow pointing across the street. Now look at the brick building and just above the point of the arrow and you’ll see a white square. That was marked with big letters saying Burglar Alarm. The building was the First National Bank. It always intrigued me.

  13. Ha, I just took another look at the photo. There is a sign warning “Signal Around Corner”. Oh well, I still passed the driver’s test.

  14. Click through at the link for the corner of Broadway and Sandy that same year, or what you would have seen two blocks later if you had taken a left here.

  15. they could relight those lighted sign boxes (what few remain) with LED lights now, if they were keeping them dark to save money….

  16. I drove one of those white Ford Econoline vans as a delivery driver for Chins Kitchen. No markings on them at the times. Got a free diner every night.

  17. @ron yup! Getting a little facelift as we speak. My pediatrician was in that building. Lots of memories of booster shots and dinosaur cookies.

  18. I think I remember Chins Kitchen’s van painted like a rickshaw with the rear tire the wheel and the view of the driver suppling the arms, shoulder, and head of the rickshaw power. Great paint job even if it wasn’t Chins.

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