11 thoughts on “N Ivanhoe Street, 1965

  1. Bale’s Thriftways have since closed…….

    The story of the Bales/Findley family in Cedar Mill started on a strawberry farm. The future founder of our Thriftway store, Odus Bales, heard that there was a good strawberry patch out this way and came over to purchase berries for his St. John’s grocery. Lillian Findley, recently widowed with a teenage son, apparently impressed him with more than her strawberries, and before long they married.

    Odus Bales eventually sold the St. John’s store and established a Thriftway in Cedar Mill. In the ‘60s a new building was constructed where Walgreen’s is now. The store moved into its current location in 1985.

    Lillian’s son Ken Findley worked his way up in the business and eventually took over managing the store in the ‘90s before his stepfather died in 1998. But now he’s ready to turn his energies toward managing the family corporation’s property holdings and has sold the grocery business to Bob Miller and his family company. Miller is former president and CEO of Fred Meyer Corporation and former CEO of RiteAid, where he remains as chairman. His son Mark is Chairman of Signature Northwest, LLC, the corporation that now owns both the Cedar Mill store and the other Bales-owned Thriftway in Aloha, Bales Farmington.

  2. On right side behind the store is a Cold War air raid siren mounted on top of a tower. By 1965, these sirens had been ‘pickled’ (gas tanks drained and batteries removed). There were a total of 7 sirens strategically placed throughout the city to warn of Russian bombers. This siren was located on N John Ave and Princeton Street. Probably taken down soon after this picture was taken.

  3. Johnny– In addition to the air raid siren at N John Ave. & Princeton the six other sirens were at these locations.
    SW 6th & Morrison atop the American Bank building
    N Emerson St. & Maryland Ave.
    NE 57th Ave. & Sandy Blvd.
    SE 54th Ave. & Boise St.
    SE Milwaukie Ave. & McLoughlin Blvd.
    SW 32 Ave. & Texas St.
    With the exception of the American Bank location the the sirens were on top of 50 foot prefabricated steel towers, and the 138 decibel sirens were tested every Monday at 12:05 pm for 30 seconds, which was later changed to a monthly test due to public anger. The City of Portland deactivated the sirens in 1963 considering they were useless as a warning for a air raid since we were now in the era of ICBM attack.
    In May of 1968 City Commissioner Frank Ivancie proposed reactivating some of the sirens as a early warning for other types of emergencies, but the proposal fell flat.

  4. mike and Dennis: You 2 are awesome! The amount of historical info found in the comment sections here never disappoints! Also, a week ago, you mentioned the film A Day Called X with the women making copies of city records for safekeeping. The air raid sirens are tied in with the Cold War bunker at Kelly Butte. It’s all tied together! Thank you for your contributions!

  5. Johnny– Here is a little more information on the fate of Portland’s air raid sirens, or as the were known locally as “Wailing Willies”. The Chrysler Sirens with their 160 HP HEMI engines last powered Portland’s “Wailing Willies” for their last monthly test on Monday June 3, 1963 at 12:05 pm.

    From the Oregonian on May 19, 1971 p. 1 (excerpt)

    James Kelly of Clackamas is the proud owner of a 1953 air raid siren and doesn’t know what to do with it. “I haven’t the slightest idea” he said after buying the 5,000 pound siren from the City of Portland at an auction Tuesday. “Maybe I’ll sell it”
    It was a real bargain only $60 complete with a 160 HP gasoline engine. It cost several thousand dollars 18 years ago. (1953 stories place the siren cost at $5,733 and total cost with towers at $24,000) This story did not say which siren location his new purchase came from.

    The Oregonian reported in September 1972 that the City Council had decided to sell the remaining “Wailing Willies” by sealed bid, but I found no information if the were sold.

  6. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Vintage Portland is good craic’!

    (I’m only posting to get a chuckle, hope no one minds. I’m hoping I can get the VP Once-ler, the Curmudgeon of Stumptown, the Fantastic Mr. Sarcastic ThumbDown to give me my daily demerit too! Always fun ignoring it!)

  7. i love glazed brick work on the right of image ! i hope the building was rebuilt and still
    stands today

  8. My grandparents lived across the street from Bales on the corner of Ivanhoe & Charleston. I remember watching this fire from their living room.

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