Deeply embedded in Portland's rich history, the Oregon Rail Heritage Center (ORHC) attempts to preserve the essence of the early transportation industry. Large steam rails, vintage passenger cars and other such paraphernalia make up the exhibits. The functional rails are used for various tours and offer a chance to experience some old-world glory. Soak up some of the local cultures at this aptly named the heritage center.
The history of the Portland fire department dates back more than 150 years. The department came into existence in the 19th Century and has been serving the community of Portland since. The Historic Belmont Firehouse is a testament to the heritage of firefighting in Portland. The firehouse building has undergone renovation many times but still manages to hold on to its historic charm. Inside the building is the Jeff Morris Fire Museum, which has displays of many kinds of firefighting equipment. Unlike other museums where touching exhibits are strictly prohibited, you can touch and handle several of these artifacts to understand how they work. Some interesting elements include the Jeffers Sidestroke Handpump Fire Engine from 1859 and the Hose Cart from 1860. Timelines of the milestones of the fire department's history adorn the walls and an audio guide is also available for those who want additional information.
A stunning nexus of history and politics, the stately Pioneer Courthouse stipples the heart of downtown Portland. Built in the 1860s, this courthouse was Portland's first restoration project. Having been home to the United States Courts since 1875, the courthouse shelters polished, well-preserved interiors, whereas its glorious cupola windows afford picturesque views of the Pioneer Courthouse Square and Portland's charming cityscape. A massive locus of historians, lawyers and judges, Pioneer Courthouse is awash in lovely Italianate style, complete with doorways and structured roofing. A testament to the city's federal past and present, the Pioneer Courthouse is, indefinitely, one of the city's crown jewels.
The city of Portland is home to a vibrant art scene, and there are always new artists whose work you can admire. This is a fact Jane Beebe is well acquainted with, leading to her establishing PDX Contemporary Art to provide new artists with the opportunity to display their talent on renowned platforms like PULSE Miami and VOLTA NY. This contemporary gallery houses works by artists like Amjad Faur, James Lavadour, Nancy Lorenz and Wes Mills. Private collectors and art lovers are sure to find much to their liking amongst the eclectic artwork displayed here.
Located in the midst of charming Northwest Portland, this architecturally fascinating church is a sight to behold. Built in 1905, First Immanuel Lutheran Church's graceful lines, sloping roof, A-frame dormers and steeple all add to its astonishing beauty. Like many other Portland churches, mission outreaches are a high priority and this church is no exception. Its congregation is involved in various community and neighborhood programs. All are welcome to attend services.
This antique stretch of highway draws visitors from around the world. The plush rainforests of the Columbia Gorge, combined with breathtaking views, provide some of the best natural entertainment in the country. Construction began in 1913 and was completed in 1922, but by the 1950s, the scenic route was becoming obsolete as a main thoroughfare. What is left of the highway has been renovated by the state and converted into a lovely trail linked with bridges and tunnels.
Before Pioneer Place, there was this plaza. The original center of downtown Portland, the plaza was alive with business and entertainment and had a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. It got a facelift in the 1980s when MAX, the local light rail, made tracks. The square is busy on weekends now, thanks to the Saturday Market, a city flea market and bazaar. The square, complete with Skidmore Fountain circa 1888, still has a bit of an historic feel.
Portland is a sternwheel steam tug, built for the Port of Portland in 1947. The tug is now docked at the Williamette River near downtown Portland and also houses the Oregon Maritime Museum. This historic tug uses paddlewheels to provide propulsion, one of the last few boats built with such a system. Tours of the tug and the museum within are available and the tug also has a library, a gift shop and a children's corner.
p:ear Gallery showcases the artworks of the young talented artists in p:ear's youth rehabilitation program. It also highlights works of gifted local artists as well. Open only on the first Thursday of every month, this gallery offers a platform to these young talents. They also get to earn from a sale of their work. Drop in to check their exhibits and buy an artwork to help a good cause.
Set up as a mail order catalog by entrepreneur Henry J. Ottenheimer, the John Cash Store further expanded its horizons. They have been providing fresh produce and cold storage facilities for decades. The Rose City Storage and Wine Vaults is an extension of the John Cash Store that specializes in wine vaults. A highlighting feature is their climate controlled vaults. They also offer a catalog of moving, packing and shipping supplies. It has been registered as a historically-noteworthy structure by the City of Portland and the State of Oregon.