a. about

In the early year’s of this century, the Golden West Hotel offered blacks the best, and only, hostelry in Oregon. Connected with the hotel is a well appointed barber shop owned by Waldo Bogle; the finest ice crearm and candy shop west of Chicago, serving its patrons all kinds of delicacies and soft drinks under the constant supervision of A.G. Green, the proprietor; a well appointed restaurant serving all kinds of dishes. Wo Gong, manager; a well furnished club room with Turkish baths and gymnasium for the Golden West Athletic league. Under the management of Geo. P. Moore; all provide for the amusement and satisfaction of the guest.
Today’s African-American community in Portland dates back to the beginnings of the transcontinental railroad. Many black workers made Portland their home in order to have access to Union Station and jobs on the railroad…
The only hotel Blacks could stay at

The only hotel Blacks could stay at

Until Oregon’s public accommodations law was passed in 1953, this was the only hotel in Portland catering to African Americans. Built in 1906 for railroad men away from home, it soon became a social center, especially on Sunday afternoons. With the Mt. Olivet Baptist Church just across the street, theGolden West Hotel hotel drew church goers to its restaurant, billiards room, ice cream parlor and candy shop. There was a thriving saloon, too (though perhaps not after church!). The barber shop was operated from 1913 to 1930 by Waldo Bogle, grandfather of former television news anchor and Portland City Commissioner Dick Bogle. Closed during the Depression, the hotel now serves the homeless mentally ill. Interpretive historical displays are on either side of the entrance.

Historic Preservation/Urban Design Focus: Cathy Galbraith, Bosco-Milligan Foundation, presented a slide show that gave insight to numerous properties within the boundary that have social/cultural significance but are not on an official historic registry. Most historic designations look to the architectural significance of buildings, and leave out the socio-cultural significance. The slide show gave an idea of houses and buildings associated with African American individuals, families, businesses, institutions that are not seen as architectural gems but that do have historical/community meaning. She explained that a large number of properties have been torn down in the past for public works projects. There are many examples of transfers of properties in the area from African American ownership to other ownership. She suggested that the group create incentives to save historically, culturally, socially significant buildings. Bosco-Milligan published Cornerstones of Community: The Buildings of Portland’s African American History in February 1998 which identified 1,284 buildings associated with African-American history and that are socially and/or culturally significant.

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