[Heritage] Oregon Heritage News 2010-05-20

Heritage Info heritage.info at state.or.us
Thu May 20 15:30:20 PDT 2010

In this issue:
1.  Dorris Ranch house secrets to be revealed May 22
2.  Wood window events scheduled for Salem, Springfield
3.  Portland street topic to be illuminated
4.  Metro seeks cemeteries coordinator
5.  Blogs reveal heritage project activities
6.  'Lost Oregon' presentation slated for Portland


University of Oregon historic preservation students and faculty will
present the history of the Dorris Ranch and some of their recent
discoveries about the Briggs farmhouse there from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. May 22.
Dorris Ranch, a 250-acre working filbert, or hazelnut, farm, is listed
in the National Register of Historic Places. Established in 1892, the
ranch is Oregon’s oldest working filbert farm.

Current research suggests the Briggs Farmhouse was likely built between
1872 and 1874 by George Thurston, who along with his wife Marietta owned
the house and nearly 800 acres of surrounding land.  In 1892, the
Thurstons sold the house and over 200 acres to George and Lulu Dorris. 
The farmhouse eventually became home
to the Briggs family, whose descendants occupied the house for over 70

In addition to the Briggs House, there are two other former residences
on the site. One is the Dorris House, which was built in 1899 and is
listed on the Historic National Register of Historic Places. The other
is the 1910 Tomseth House, which was moved to Dorris Ranch in 1995.
Other historic structures on the site include a barn that was built in
the 1930s, a former farm equipment storage building that was built in
the 1940s, and the Dorris House garage and freezer house built in the
early 1940s.

Historical walking tours of Dorris Ranch, visits to a pioneer log cabin
replica and cooking cornbread on an open fire are among the May 22
activities scheduled to celebrate National Historic Preservation Month.
Dorris Ranch is located at South Second and Dorris streets in
Springfield. For more information, visit


Salem:  The Salem Historic Landmarks Commission and the Oregon State
Historic Preservation Office will present a Historic Window Repair and
Weatherization Workshop from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. May 22 in Room 205 of the
Reed Opera House, 189 Liberty St. NE. The information will include when
to repair vs. replace, how to open a painted-shut window, cheap and easy
repairs, weatherization options, glazing and other topics. For more
information, visit 

Springfield:  The Springfield Historic Commission will host a wood
window efficiency event from 5 p.m.-6 p.m. May 21 at the Springfield
Farmers Market . Joy Sears of the State Historic Preservation Office
will provide a hands-on demonstration. The Farmers Market is located on
Main Street between Fifth and Sixth streets. For more information, visit


In 1914, enterprising businessmen unveiled an architectural and
electrical wonder along Portland's downtown Third Street - "The Great 
Light Way." The transformation of the street marked an important turning
point in the development of downtown Portland, as bridge and
road-building increasingly affected the shape of the Westside business
district. Dan Haneckow, an expert on transportation and historic
architecture, presents this topic as part of an Oregon Encyclopedia
program at 6:30 p.m. May 25 at McMenamins Edgefield Theater, 2126 S.W.
Halsey St., Troutdale. For more information, visit


Metro in Portland is seeking to hire a .75 FTE pioneer cemetery
coordinator. The application deadline is June 4. Visit
www.oregonmetro.gov/jobs for the complete job announcement and a
description of the application process.


More heritage organizations are using blogs to distribute information
about their resources and their activities. For examples, you can visit
the blog of the Bush House Museum in Salem at
http://bushhousemuseum.blogspot.com/ or the Oregon Digital Newspaper
Project at  http://odnp.wordpress.com/


Historian Richard Engeman will present "Lost Oregon," a selection of
resources from Oregon's now-vanished built environment, at 10 a.m. May
22 at the Architectural Heritage Center, 701 SE Grand Ave., Portland.

In the past 250 years, Oregonians have built, and then lost, many
remarkable structures, from Chinook longhouses to the Capitol Building,
from nabob’s mansions to towering wooden trestles. Wood, our most
common construction material, is cheap and adaptable; it also burns well
and rots easily. Social and economic fluctuations have also driven
changes in the built environment, as railroad trestles were superseded
by freeway ramps, and country churches gave way to trailer courts.

Engeman is the author of "Wood Beams and Railroad Ties: The History of
Oregon’s Built Environment" (online at www.ohs.org) and "The Oregon
Companion: an Historical Gazetteer of the Useful, the Curious, and the
Oregon Heritage News is a service of the Oregon Heritage Commission,
which can be contacted at heritage.info at state.or.us 

More information about the Heritage mailing list