I love historic film images, both for their quality and for a glimpse of life forgotten. There are some amazing archival photos of Oregon out there, and these are some of my favorites.
So many trees were cut down in Portland’s early days that it came to be referred to as “Stumptown”. Residents said that there were so many tree stumps, a person could jump across town on them without ever having to touch the ground. Early 1850s.
2. Crib Trestle and Train
3. Onlookers Watch the Eruption of Mt. St. Helens from Pittock Mansion
May 18, 1980.
4. The McMinnville UFO
The McMinnville UFO photographs were taken on a farm near Sheridan, Oregon, United States, in 1950. The photos were reprinted in Life magazine and in newspapers across the nation, and are often considered to be among the most famous ever taken of an unidentified flying object. Skeptics believe that the photos are a hoax, but many ufologists continue to argue that the photos are genuine, and show an unidentified object in the sky. For more information, see Wikipedia.
5. Teddy Roosevelt Campaigning in Eugene
April 11, 1911.
6. An Oregon Lumber Worker and his Wife by Dorothea Lange
An unemployed lumber worker with his wife during the 1939 Multnomah County bean harvest. Note the social security number tattooed on his arm.
7. The Great Light Way
The Great Light Way of illuminated arches along Portland’s Southwest Third Street in 1914. I feel like they should bring these back.
8. Star Wars Opens, 1977
9. A Dynamite Explosion Destroys Downtown Roseburg
Before first light on Aug. 7, 1959, a truck carrying 6 1/2 tons of dynamite and blasting agent exploded, leveling downtown Roseburg and killing 14 people.
10. Overlooking Mt. Hood in 1932
11. A Wild Wagon Ride on the Oregon Coast
12. Hospital in Timber, Oregon
Timber is a small community in rural Washington County, near Vernonia.
13. Feeding a Bear in Downtown Redmond, OR
Taken sometime around the turn of the 20th Century.
14. Chief Tommy Thompson at Celilo Falls
15. The Columbus Day Storm Destroys Landmarks
The steeple atop historic Campbell Hall, on the Oregon College of Education Campus, Monmouth, toppled by the Columbus Day Storm, Oct. 12, 1962.
16. First Traffic Signal in Portland
A Portland Police officer and businessmen flank the first traffic signal to be erected in Portland at SW 3rd and Morrison, 1915. You can see the Great Light Way, unlit in the background.
17. The Bridge to Oregon City from West Linn
18. A Log Bridge Over Multnomah Falls
Built by a homesteader long before the falls was designated a State Park.