SHINE is a look backward from the present to Salem's 1860 charter. In each year we have four sections: glimpses of what was happening around the world, a special event in Salem, what you see when you visit that site today, and other Salem events of interest that year.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Salem in 1894

World Events
  • Japan invades Korea, beginning the first war between China and Japan.
  • The International Olympic Committee is established in Paris.
  •  New Zealand enacts the world's first minimum wage law.
  • Russian emperor Alexander III is succeeded by his son, Nicholas II.
  • After the queen of Hawaii is overthrown, a republic is proclaimed by Sanford B Dole.
  • Coxey's Army, a protest march by workers, unemployed because of the national financial crisis that begun the year before, moves through the northwest commandeering a Northwest Pacific train on their way to Washington, D.C. Two months later, 3000 Pullman factory workers go out on a strike in Illinois.
  • Oil is discovered on vast prairie land of the Osage reservation, making them the "richest people on earth." This brought wealth, but problems to the tribe as the Bureau of Indian Affairs allowed non-tribal people to claim membership to their profit. 
  • Coca-Cola is sold in bottles for the first time.
  • Notable new book: The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling and Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain. Stephen Crane's Civil War novel, Red Badge of Courage, is published as a serial in the Philadelphia Press, a newspaper.  The drama, Arms and the Man by Bernard Shaw, is staged in London.
In Salem

Dr. Luke Port, pharmacist and speculator, completes his new Queen Anne style home designed by William Knighton, but lived there with his wife Lizzie only 16 months. Perhaps the memories were too sad. The stained glass window over the fireplace in the parlor was dedicated to a teenage son lost at sea while sailing to Europe to study chemistry. It depicts three fully blooming roses representing the living Port family members and a rose bud symbolic of the son that was lost. The house was sold to the Bingham family the next year. Judge George Bingham, his wife Willie lived in the house until their deaths in 1924. Their daughter Alice married Mr. Keith Powell in 1915. Upon the death of her parents, she sold her childhood home to the Brown family ~ Clifford, his wife Alice and their two sons, Chandler and Werner. Mr. Brown died suddenly only three years later in 1927. In 1929, Alice Brown commissioned the new firm of Lord-Schryver, the first female owned landscape architecture firm in the Northwest, to design the gardens. They continued to advise this owner almost forty years. In 1935, Alice Brown named the estate "Deepwood" after a favorite children's book of her sons. The Deepwood Scroll Garden earned the nickname "Lower Wedding Garden" following her 1945 marriage to Keith Powell, Alice Bingham Powell's widower. The couple lived at Deepwood until they moved into a smaller, one-storey home in 1968. Following a community campaign to save the property from demolition, Deepwood became a City of Salem owned park and museum in 1971. 

When you visit

The house is located at the southwest corner of Mission and 12th streets, near Pringle Creek. With its Lord and Schryver garden, it is now a premier attraction for local social events and tourists. For more information about this National Register property in the SCAN neighborhood, refer to the Deepwood website.  It is also on the route of the SHINE Pringle Creek self-guided walking tour.

Other Events
•    In September, Company E, 3rd Regiment of Coxey's Industrial Army from Sacramento arrived in Salem 49 strong. At the depot, they set up camp and flew the national flag. They were reported as respectable American citizens on the way to Washington to protest the loss of American jobs due to immigration. Mayor Claude Gatch reluctantly agreed to feed the group at the Boston and P.Q. restaurants at a cost of $6.25 to the city. When the group left for Portland on the freight train that night, about 20 Salem men had joined the company. (See Ben Maxwell's Salem, Oregon, edited by Scott McArthur, 2006.)
•    Two Salem religious congregations build in this year: the German Methodist parsonage is erected on Winter Street. In 1944 the church sold the residence to Charles Warren. In 1977 the State of Oregon purchased property on the east side of that block for construction of the North Capitol Mall Office Building. A private builder bought this house and the one next door (the Moon house) and moved them to D Street in the NESCA neighborhood. Both historic homes have been renovated. (The story of these houses is found here.)

The Evangelical Church is built on the corner of Chemeketa and 17th Streets and the adjacent parsonage was built the following year. Both are in their original 1894-5 locations, but the function of the church has changed: it is now a private home with a large, ground floor living area and a place for sleeping in the former choir loft. They are in the Court-Chemeketa Historic District of the NEN neighborhood. See this house on the SHINE Court-Chemeketa Walking Tour.
From the left: Gray and Eckerlen Buildings as they appear today

•    The Gray family constructs another commercial building on Liberty Street adjacent to their own, the mustard-colored building at left above. The new building is seen here with three bays of windows on the second floor. In 1909 it was sold to Eugene Eckerlen who owned a saloon on Commercial Street. He rented this new building to merchants and it was known as the New Eckerlen Building. From 1936 to the 1960s, it housed Bishops' clothing store, a popular establishment for men. A fire in 1999 partially destroyed the building, but it has recently been renovated. It is located on an especially handsome block of historic buildings in the Salem Downtown Historic District.
•    Dr. W.Carlton Smith, the first attending physician at the Fairview Training Center, builds a residence on Oak Street near Willamette University. As the Salem Hospital expanded in that area, the house was moved to Canon Street in the Morningside neighborhood. Photographs of this Local Landmark in both locations are found here.
•    In her parents' Court Street parlor, Myra Albert Wiggins lights a fuse, then rushes to join her wedding group for a self-photograph. She had returned to Salem after three years of study at New York's Art Students League. In future years she would choose a professional career as well as being a wife and mother, becoming an internationally recognized photographer.

Original building of the Oregon School for the Deaf
In this year bids property was selected by the state for a school for deaf students and the first building erected. Later used as a tuberculosis sanitarium, it is now a part of Corban College.


Karen Cooper said...

Oh, she is the Grand Lady on Mission St., isn't she! Wonderful post regarding my favorite place in Salem. Thank you!

Capital Taps said...

For more on Eugene Eckerlen, the Eckerlen Building, and the role of Eckerlen in Salem brewing history, see the history here! Eckerlen was part of a group of influential Alsatians at the last turn of the century.