Portland Oregon has always paved a path in history as the end goal for the American Dream. From the pioneers of yesterday looking for a better life for their families to the juggernaut of modern business innovation, the Pacific North West has always held the door open for every one willing to venture out west. The gold rush may be over but there are still plenty of opportunities for you and your family in the Rose City. Hopefully by the end of this page you will be sold on Oregon and one of the greatest cities in the country!
A Little History Lesson
The site of the future city of Portland, Oregon, was known to American, Canadian, and British traders, trappers and settlers of the 1830s and early 1840s as a small stopping place along the west bank of the Willamette River used by travelers en route between Oregon City and Fort Vancouver. As early as 1840, Massachusetts sea captain John Couch logged an encouraging assessment of the river’s depth adjacent to The Clearing, noting its promise of accommodating large ocean-going vessels, which could not ordinarily travel up-river as far as Oregon City, the largest Oregon settlement at the time. In 1843, Tennessee pioneer William Overton and Boston, Massachusetts lawyer Asa Lovejoy filed a 640 acres (260 ha) land claim with Oregon’s provisional government that encompassed The Clearing and nearby waterfront and timber land.
On March 30, 1849, Lownsdale split the Portland claim with Stephen Coffin, who paid $6,000 for his half. By August 1849, Captain John Couch and Stark were pressuring Lownsdale and Coffin for Stark’s half of the claim; Stark had been absent, but was using the claim as equity in an East Coast-California shipping business with the Sherman Brothers of New York.
In December 1849, William W. Chapman bought what he believed was a third of the overall claim for $26,666, plus his provision of free legal services for the partnership. In January 1850, Lownsdale had to travel to San Francisco to negotiate on the land claim with Stark, leaving Chapman with power of attorney. Stark and Lownsdale came to an agreement on March 1, 1850, which gave to Stark the land north of Stark Street and about $3,000 from land already sold in this area. This settlement reduced the size of Chapman’s claim by approximately 10%. Lownsdale returned to Portland in April 1850, where the terms were presented to an unwilling Chapman and Coffin, but who agreed after negotiations with Couch. While Lownsdale was gone, Chapman had given himself block 81 on the waterfront and sold all of the lots on it, and this block was included in the Stark settlement area. Couch’s negotiations excluded this property from Stark’s claim, allowing Chapman to retain the profits on the lot.
Portland existed in the shadow of Oregon City, the territorial capital 12 miles (19 km) upstream at Willamette Falls. However, Portland’s location at the Willamette’s confluence with the Columbia River, accessible to deep-draft vessels, gave it a key advantage over the older peer. It also triumphed over early rivals such as Milwaukie and Linnton. In its first census in 1850, the city’s population was 821 and, like many frontier towns, was predominantly male, with 653 male whites, 164 female whites and four “free colored” individuals. It was already the largest settlement in the Pacific Northwest, and while it could boast about its trading houses, hotels and even a newspaper—the Weekly Oregonian—it was still very much a frontier village, derided by outsiders as “Stumptown” and “Mudtown.” It was a place where “stumps from fallen firs lay scattered dangerously about Front and First Streets … humans and animals, carts and wagons slogged through a sludge of mud and water … sidewalks often disappeared during spring floods.”
The first firefighting service was established in the early 1850s, with the volunteer Pioneer Fire Engine Company. In 1854, the city council voted to form the Portland Fire Department, and following an 1857 reorganization it encompassed three engine companies and 157 volunteer firemen. From there the rest is history!
Soccer City, USA
If you love the beautiful game and want the same feeling of a match between to rival teams in Europe look no further than Portland. Home to the Timbers and the Thorns, Portland is known for its MLS and WSL matches. Both teams have big dreams and a pedigree to match. 2015 MLS CUP winners and 2018 WSL champs both call Portland their home. Portland is home to some of the best club level teams in the country as well ranging from all ages.
If you love soccer this city is for you and your family. Message me directly at [email protected] to find condos near Providence Park.
FOOD AND BEER.
The Oregon Trail may be something in history books but it’s still going on strong in the food game. The gold may have dried up but Portland is a MECCA for amazing food. Little Big Burger, VooDoo Doughnuts, and HUB Brewery started here. Check the map out below for more delicious restaurants and breweries to choose from. We can assure you the list is endless.
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