SHINE on Salem 150, celebrating the sesquicentennial of our city's 1860 charter, continues (and concludes) with the 2012 entry.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Salem in 1973

World Events
 The Vietnam War ends with a cease-fire, US troops leave

Vice President Agnew resigns due to income tax evasion; Gerald Ford takes office.
•    The secret White House tapes are revealed during the Watergate Congressional investigation.
•    Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries embargo oil, prices rise in US energy crisis.
 

Historic Deepwood Estate
Willamette Heritage Center
In Salem
Salem appears on the US Department of the Interior's National Register of Historic Places for the first time with four historic properties at two sites: the 1894 Deepwood Estate, owned by the city, and the 1895 Thomas Kay Woolen Mill (Now Willamette Heritage Center), a privately administered facility. The mill property includes two other historic building this year: the 1841 Jason Lee House and the Methodist Parsonage. These are the first Methodist mission residential structures of Salem. Two other buildings, also moved to the Mission Mill Museum property, will be successfully nominated in the coming years: the 1846 Boon House (in 1975), an early private residence and 1858 Pleasant Grove Presbyterian Church (in 1987). The historic church was originally located 12 miles southeast of Salem near West Stayton.
David Duniway leads these first local efforts for historical preservation. The Oregon State Archives gives his introduction: "From day he arrived in Salem in 1946, David Duniway gave a great deal of his time and energy to the local historical community. His retirement as State Archivist in 1972 only served to increase his focus on his other projects that have become the cornerstones of the local historical community. Duniway helped to organize and became the first director of the Mission Mill Museum Association. He retired as director of the Mission Mill in 1976 to spend more time writing books about Salem history. Duniway was founder of the Marion County Historical Society and the Salem City Club and served as a member of Salem's sesquicentennial committee. His personal connection to Oregon history was strengthened by the fact that he was grandson of famous pioneer and equal rights champion, Abigail Scott Duniway."

When you visit
Historic Deepwood Estate is open for tours and many events during each year. More information may found on their website. Of special interest are the 5 acres of gardens partially designed by the Lord and Schryver landscape architects and maintained by that Conservancy. The historic Deepwood carriage house has recently been restored and will be used for exhibitions and other services.
The Mission Mill Museum and the Marion County Historical Society, on the same property, have become united in 2010 as the Willamette Heritage Center. Mission Mill Museum will continue to be the site for administration, exhibitions, cafe and the rented retail/office space. The former Marion County Historical Society facility serves as the archive, library and information technology center. The website gives information about exhibits and hours of operation.

Other events
•    Robert E. Lindsey, a dentist by profession, becomes mayor as the city administration adapts to the new Civic Center.
•    In May, Grant Park, adjacent to the Grant Elementary School is opened. Stuart Compton, Administrator of the Aldrich Trust, suggests this second use of trust funds and the project was accepted by the City Council. The four acre park has play equipment for children, a ball field and picnic tables. Both students and neighbors use this attractive neighborhood amenity.
•    Buildings on a High Street site, between Chemeketa and Center, are emptied in preparation for a new six-floor office building, the Equitable Center.
•    The Senator Hotel Building, on High and Court Street intersection, is sold to the state as an office building.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Salem in 1972

World Events
  • President Nixon makes historic visit to China.
  • The "Watergate" break-in, political "cover-up" of responsibility.
  • 11 Israeli athletes murdered at Munich Olympics, Mark Spitz wins 7 medals.


In Salem
The new complex of municipal offices and public library is complete. A four-year campaign had been launched by Mayor Vern Miller with Wes Sullivan as chairman of a 26-person committee. Citywide “grass roots” efforts were undertaken, especially to decide whether the site would be north of the city along Mill Creek or south of downtown. The bond issue passed and the southern site was selected. Above, a crowd has gathered on August 18 for the dedication of the complex. A band plays in front of the fountain while onlookers watch from the area between the city hall and the library and from the (then) porch of the library. A feature of the modern styled City Hall structure is a landscaped interior courtyard. The Civic Center also contains publicly owned art works. This collection was begun this year with a Mayor's Invitational Mayor's Invitational exhibition when the Civic Center first opened. The Peace Plaza is a beautiful open space between the City Hall and the Salem Public Library.

When you visit
There is now a third major building of our Civic Center, a parking garage with entrances from Liberty Street and Leslie Street. A short walkway leads to the main entrance of the library. As patrons enter, they enjoy "In a Quiet Meadow"; statuary by Delbert Hodges donated this year when the library opened. Salem's art collection is now displayed throughout the Civic Center, on the lawns and plazas, in the corridors, offices, meeting rooms, in both the Library and City Council Chambers. This is an important local artistic and historic resource. The Salem's Civic Center Art Collection, as it was in 2000, is listed on the Salem History website.
City Hall of the Vern Miller Civic Center houses several of the nine municipal departments including Administration, Finance, Legal (Municipal Court), Human Resources, Police and Community Development. The headquarters of the Fire Department is in Fire Station #1 across Pringle Creek on Trade Street. Other departments such as Public Works, Urban Development, Information Technology are housed elsewhere.
Citizens have the best opportunity to learn how the city government operates by attending City Council meetings. At the meetings, citizens may testify about issues they wish to support or of concern. Another way to effect city programs or services is by volunteering to serve on one of the more than twenty Boards and Commissions. Information about vacancies on Boards and Commissions is found on the city's website.

Other events
Photograph from the collection of Marylou Green
  • In the night before demolition, the clock in tower of the empty 1893 City Hall has stopped at 1:17. The tower of the 1893 City Hall is the last part of the building to be demolished.


 Unoccupied Dalrymple House awaiting move. Separated floors aloft. The crash!
  • On Marion Street, the unoccupied 1863 Dalrymple House awaits its fate. In preparation for moving the Italianate-style house, the two floors were separated. As a first step in the removal process, the second floor is lifted over the street by a crane, but it crashes to the pavement. A Statesman Journal photographer catches the moment of this spectacular accident. James Dalrymple and his wife had three daughters who married into prominent Salem families, leaving many local fourth-generation descendants.
  • Sprague High School, named for former owner-editor of the Oregon Statesman and Oregon governor Charles Arthur Sprague (1886-1969), is dedicated at 2373 Kuebler Road South. Among the guests present on the stage for the dedication on December 3 were Mrs. Martha Sprague Hurley, Mrs. Blanche Sprague, Wallace Sprague and Wesley Sullivan. Bill Kendrick, Salem Superintendent of Schools, and Don Dubois, the principal, conducted the ceremonies.
  • Eola Village is typical of housing for migrant labor that harvests crops outside the city. The Community Conservation Committee inspects the area for low income Turnkey Housing in Northgate Village.
  • On the Capitol steps, Governor McCall meets with employees after a shutdown of paper production at the Boise Cascade plant.
  • The Grier Building is erected at the former location of the 1842 Jason Lee House. A plaque inside commemorates the importance of this historic site.
  • South of Trade Street, urban renewal is creating new buildings and parks where there had been canneries along the south side of Pringle Creek. Groundbreaking ceremonies are held for the parking structure and the SAIF building construction begins. These downtown development projects would continue for three years.
  • At the Liberty Street bridge over Pringle Creek, Sambo's is a popular restaurant. Built before 1969, it was originally "Little Black Sambo's", the name taken from a children's book about a South Indian boy's encounter with four hungry tigers. The Tudor Rose replaced this restaurant in a few years. Waterplace has now (2010) been built in this site.
  • On the northeast side of the same bridge, construction begins on Pringle Park Plaza.
  • Neighborhood Associations are established. City Neighborhood Services Specialists and staff liaisons from the city assigned to assist neighborhoods with communications, obtaining information, and better organizing. Faye Wright , an area annexed to the city only 10 years before, is organized this year. The 1920s house (photographed in 2007) is associated with the Frank Hrubetz family for whom the road was named. Two other houses on the same street, at 235 and 230, are associated with this family and research continues. Another significant historical property is the Chesley house at 225 Boone Road. Asked about the neighborhood , Wendy Pyper, Chair in 2010, gave this description: " Thanks to the efforts of Phil Webb and Dean Orton, our association was created so residents would have more influence in land use issues affecting our area. It is alive and well today! Our neighborhood is a mix of apartments, affordable to up-scale single family homes, good schools and churches, parks and businesses. Populated by a diverse group of wonderful people, we have a low crime rate and few issues of concern. We believe this is one of the best places in Salem to live, work and play!"


Monday, June 28, 2010

Salem in 1971

World events
  • The Vietnam war extends into Laos; 7000 arrested for D.C. protest activities.
  • Roe vs. Wade legalizes abortion.
  • Cigarette ads are outlawed on TV.
  • Billie Jean King is the first female athlete to earn $100,000 in one year.
  • Amtrak begins operating US railroads.
  • Oregon Forestry Practices Act requires the replanting of harvested trees.
In Salem
On November 12, a fire in the historic old Marion Hotel left it in ruins. Another photograph, taken from the air during the fire, shows smoke rising from the gutted building: the sign for the Velvet Horse Lounge is still in place above the ruins. In 1870, when the doors of the Chemeketa House opened it brought Salem a new age of genteel luxury and elegance. On December 26, 1970, the Chemeketa Hotel, since renamed the Marion hotel, celebrated its centennial. The secrets of a century of back-stage politics and local social events were hidden inside the old building at Commercial and Ferry Streets SE. Traditional hotel hospitality was there in the old portion of the building: 50 of those high-ceiling rooms were furnished in antiques dating back over the 100-year history of the hotel.

When you visit
A typical, mid-century motel and restaurant was built on that site, but closed before 1999. After several years of municipal discussion, the present Conference Center, facing Commercial Street, and Grand Hotel on Liberty Street were completed in 2005. Since then, the city has added graphic historical information for the residents and visitors: on the Ferry and Commercial Street stair landing, there is an interpretive panel showing the importance of this intersection in the earliest years of statehood. It outlines the social and political importance of the hotel building that once stood here until the fire of 1971.

Other Events
  • The urban renewal of the Hollywood district in North Salem begins. In June, the Hollywood Theater, which gave this suburban business neighborhood its name, was demolished. The Highland neighborhood has produced an excellent online history of Hollywood's transformation. The Hazel Avenue neighborhood was still farmland when, as an orphan, future president Herbert Hoover lived here as a boy. His uncle, Henry Minthorn, developed the Highland area and sponsored the building of the Friends Church that still stands (but with a different religious affiliation). The Miles Linen Mill, located at the intersection of Fairgrounds Road and Sunnyview Avenue, was later occupied by the Oregon Military Department. By 1971, this early Salem suburban work and commercial center, with its outdated intersection of Fairgrounds, Capitol, Myrtle and Tile streets, no longer served the transportation needs of the growing city. The Hollywood Theater, which gave the area its popular name, and Mootry's Pharmacy, are now only fond memories of senior citizens. This was the city's first Urban Renewal project.
  • The Gideon Stoltz Company, the pioneer of our canning industry, a malt beverage distributor, moves to a modern building at 2445 North Liberty Street.

  • The 1870 William Lincoln Wade house, one of our oldest residences still in use, is moved from its original location on the 800 block of Liberty Street (in the same block as Boon's Store) to 1305 John Street in South Salem. His son, Murray Wade, was a well-known newspaper cartoonist and publisher of the Oregon Magazine for 45 years. Soon after this year's move by its new owners, Mr. and Mrs. Richard Newman, it was photographed in its new location.
  • The city purchases the 1894 Deepwood property. The five-acre estate was originally part of the circa 1889, 220-acre Yew Park subdivision; the Queen Anne styled house designed by William C. Knighton and built by Dr. Luke Port. He sold the home to George and Willie Bingham in 1895. They made Deepwood their home for 28 years developing the natural gardens with roses, an orchard, grape arbor and vegetable gardens. Alice Bingham, their daughter, sold the house to Clifford and Alice Brown in 1924. After his death, Alice lived in the home as a widow, commissioning landscape architects Elizabeth Lord and Edith Schryver to design the gardens. By 1930, Alice was calling the house and gardens “Deepwood” after the children’s book “The Hollow Tree and Deepwoods” Book by Albert Bigelow Paine, a favorite of her sons. In 1935, when the gardens were nearly complete, she had the name Deepwood formally registered as a legal farm name. The longest resident of Deepwood, Alice Brown married Keith Powell, widower of Alice Bingham, remaining in the house until their health required relocation in 1968. The city of Salem acquires the home in December of this year.
  • An aerial view of the state fairgrounds this year shows the horse racing track, exhibition halls and carnival midway. The giant parking lots are surrounded by suburban residential neighborhoods. Buildings destroyed by the fire three years before have been replaced. Senator George McGovern of South Dakota visited our Oregon State Fair and shared opening day activities with Governor and Mrs. McCall. In the next year, he would lose the presidential election to Richard Nixon. The Watergate controversy began during this campaign and would lead to the resignation of President Nixon before his term ended.

  • Construction for the Civic Center south of Pringle Creek between Commercial and Liberty Streets begins. This photograph shows the placing of the triangular concrete pieces that will surround the fountain in the plaza between the new library and city offices. In the distance, the old City Hall still stands.
  • By June, the new Fire Station #1, adjacent to the Civic Center is complete and in use. In 2011, this central fire station was renovated.
  • Roger Tofte, artist and draftsman with the state highway division, took his hobby and turned it into a career as the created the Enchanted Forest Amusement Park south of the city. In the next year, he quit his job and devoted his talents to creating family-friendly attractions and rides.

Photograph taken in 2007
  • The Bush-Brey building is remodeled to include a bridge to an addition in the back and a garden courtyard for the Busick Court Restaurant on Court Street. The woodwork on the second floor is restored, the design of windows changed and the northern skylight that had served the former Cronise Photography Studio site for sixty years was removed.
  • Cherry picking is still an important source of income for many Salem families and for migrants who come for seasonal work. Young people of all social classes make spending money in this summer activity.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Salem in 1970

World events
  • "Highjacking" of airliners becomes a danger
  • Ohio four students are killed at Kent State during a protest against the war in Vietnam; two years of Peace Talks continue.
  • Earth Day is inaugurated; Environmental Protection Agency created; Clean Air Act passed in Congress


In Salem
The Salem Public Library is part of the new Civic Center being built on a hill south of Pringle Creek. Hugh Morrow was completing a thirty-three year career with this visionary project that will be completed before he retires in 1972. Mr. Morrow came to Salem in 1939 as director of the Salem Public Library. He had a great interest in history, was a member of the Oregon Historical Society and a founder of the Marion County Historical Society. He was the first president of the Oregon Library Association and secretary of the Downtown Rotary Club for 15 years. Mr. Morrow died July 20, 1990. He was an outstanding cultural leader and an honored member of the Salem community.

When you visit
Mr. Morrow is remembered at the library today by a collection of historical materials. These shelves contain not only books and pamphlets about Salem, many by local authors, but our City Directories including editions from the 1890s to the most current. For anyone doing genealogical or historic property research, these resources are invaluable.

Other Events

City Council Meeting photograph from Salem City Library collection
  • 1970 City Council meetings are conducted with a slightly different physical layout than in the Civic Center of two years later. Mayor Miller, City Administrator Moore, and the city attorney are seated on a raised platform at the front of the chamber with four councilors on each side (as would be continued). Directly in front of the mayor, also facing the public, sit the city recorder, Betty Marsh, and secretary to the administrator, Mary Brady. Historically, the City Recorder had an important position in Salem city government, keeping records of meetings, being ex-officio clerk of the common council and assessor. The recorder previously had jurisdiction over all violations of city ordinances and presided in the absence of the mayor. It was an elected office from 1857 to 1964 when it became a position appointed by the City Administrator. Voters approved an amended charter in May 1996 and in June 1996 an ordinance was passed that created the office of City Recorder with in the legal Department.
  • A new fire station on Lansing Avenue is completed in May. The Lansing area had been annexed into the city in 1920, but it had remained rural farmland until after the accelerated residential boom of the 1950s and 1960s that transformed farmlands surrounding the city into suburban neighborhoods. Because of the increased population between Market Street and Silverton Road, Lansing would, in 1973, become one of the first neighborhoods to become a recognized association.
  • In July, a photographer snaps a dramatic picture of the traffic congestion on the Center Street Bridge ramp as cars make their way into Salem. The problem of traffic crossing the Willamette River remains a concern. Emergency access has been partially relieved by the project to remodel the Union Street Railroad Bridge and Trestle for pedestrians and bicycles. It was approved by the City Council when the plans included a provision for emergency vehicle use. A "Third Bridge" has been in the planning stages for a number of years and will need considerable federal financing to be a future reality. In 1966, a Citizen's Advisory Traffic Commission was established that meets to address all concerns about traffic on our roadways and make recommendations to the City Council in the area of traffic movement and safety. The nine appointed members meet as needed, usually on a Thursday at 7 pm. Residents are encouraged to apply for volunteer service on this important Salem commission.
  • In November, a groundbreaking ceremony is held to begin the construction of the new Statesman Journal building at the corner of Chemeketa and Church Streets. (The building is for sale in 2014.)  A photograph features Jenny Mainwaring, Blanch Sprague and Wendell Webb. The construction of this building completed the transformation of the former residential area east of Church Street into commercial properties. During the previous thirty years, during the expansion of the state buildings north of the Capital and the relocation of the First Presbyterian Church, the substantial homes of many prominent citizens were either demolished or moved to other sites. Fortunately, the Court-Chemeketa Historic Residential District, between 13th and 18th streets, has preserved a flavor of an early Salem urban neighborhood and recorded the history of many pioneer families.
  • Miller's Department Store closes in the historic Reed Opera House. When the Odd Fellows Hall and Grand Opera House was built in 1900, the auditorium space in the Reed Opera House was converted to Joseph Myers and Sons store. New stores adjacent to the former opera house included E.P. McCormack's smaller building to the south and the new J. C. Penney store. Liberty Street soon surpassed Commercial Street as the hub of local shopping. In 1920 Miller's department store took over the Myers store and later the entire building, creating an enterprise supplying fashions and household products in a family shopping environment typical of the next 30 years. Salem seniors still remember their youthful fascination with the system of vacuum tubes that controlled cash payments in the years before credit cards and electronics. After the close of Miller's, a major rehabilitation of the retail space would not occur until 1976.
  • Christmas lights on a temporary tree decorated the old City Hall for the last time in 1970. In 1913, Salem had the first outdoor tree in the United States to be decorated with Christmas lights. The Marion County Courthouse tree was a Norway spruce tree planted by Judge J. J. Shaw in 1882. Over the years, this tree had been featured in many photographs of the old courthouse.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Salem in 1969

World events
  • "The Eagle has landed", Neil Armstrong on the moon
  • President Nixon begins "Vietnamization" to disengage US from Vietnam War
  • Manson indicted for "Helter Skelter" murders in Los Angeles
  • Woodstock Music & Art Fair, "Hair" is popular song.

Western Baptist Bible College 1969, now Corban University
In Salem
This year a Bible Institute located in California since 1946, changed its name to Western Baptist Bible College and moved to Salem. One of the main buildings, seen above, was originally constructed for The Oregon Deaf-Mute Institute in 1884. However, the school's isolation, inadequate roads and proximity to the "bad influence" of the reformatory caused the school to be relocated to 52 acres in North Salem near the Fairgrounds.
In 1910, this building became the Oregon State Tuberculosis Sanitarium. Patients came slowly for the first years. Gradually the demand increased, causing a lack of beds in the necessary open-air pavilions as treatment required in those days. A waiting list of prospective patients developed. In 1963, the State Legislature combined this hospital with the University of Oregon Medical School Tuberculosis Hospital in Portland.
The facility was available for Western Baptist Bible College in 1969.

When you visit
This historic building is Schimmel Hall in the renamed college, now Corban University. It serves administration, the Emitte Center and as a dining hall. It is a historical property in the Southeast Mill Creek Association, anorganization founded in 1986, eleven years after that neighborhood was annexed to the city.

Other events

  • An architectural model of the proposed Civic Center is produced for display. The photograph shown in the Statesman Journal (above) shows columned buildings that include a city hall and library with a fire station "across the street". It is hard to recognize our current civic center in this three-dimensional model. In 2014 there is a proposal to redesign the present Civic Center to make the structure more earthquake-proof and accommodate a new police facility.
  • West Salem has its first residential housing development at Pioneer Village on Taybin Road. Polk County Housing Authority administered the project. This year a Planning Commission was established to promote the growth and orderly development of Salem.
  • Wayne L. Thompson becomes Municipal Judge after the resignation of Dale Pierson. Judge Thompson is subsequently elected to the office and will serve until his resignation in 1990.
  • On the opening day of the State Fair, Governor and Mrs. McCall ride in a hot-air balloon and cut the ribbon to officially open the Agriculture Exhibits and the Community hall. There is a pie-eating contest with boys competing to eat the most pie while their hands are behind their backs. The girls take part in a watermelon-eating contest. The Ronald McDonald clown character was the judge of both.
  • The Marion County Fair gets a start when the Future Farmers of America and the 4-H club produce a show including livestock display and horse exhibitions.
  • A demonstration against the Vietnam War is held at the State Capitol on Moratorium Day, October 17. Another photograph shows one man standing at the entrance speaking while others wait their turn. A folk singer appears to be playing his guitar.
  • The Center Street Bridge is demolished in preparation for expansion and remodeling.
  • The George Putnam University Center arises at Willamette University. It was named for the former editor and publisher of the local newspaper who left his estate to the university. At the time the building opened it contained the bookstore, mail room, information desk, offices and eating facilities.
  • This year the voters created a community college district, covering more than 2,600 square miles in Oregon's Mid-Willamette Valley. It includes Marion, Polk, most of Yamhill, and part of Linn counties. A contest was held to name the new school and entries were solicited from Salem Tech students, as well as from all the district high schools. In December the Board of Education approved the name Chemeketa, a Native American term for a place of peace.
  • Salem Memorial Hospital and Salem General Hospital merge to make better use of buildings, equipment, and personnel, providing higher quality care and lower costs. All acute care services were consolidated on Winter Street.
  • Charles A. Sprague, who came to Salem in 1929, became owner, editor, and publisher of the Statesman Journal, establishing a reputation as one of the Nation's great editors. His editorials were often reprinted in some of America's largest newspapers. Sprague gained a national reputation as an articulate spokesman for small-town values, fiscal conservatism, and internationalism. He held control of the paper until his death. A declared Republican, he nonetheless took an independent position on the issues of the time, reflecting a progressive view which was often at odds with leaders of his party. He served as Governor of Oregon from 1939 to 1943. A lifelong Presbyterian with what friends referred to as a stern sense of Calvinism, he neither smoked or drank, and his newspaper would not accept advertising for hard liquor. An avid outdoorsman, he climbed the highest mountains of the Pacific Northwest and, in his seventies shot the rapids of the Colorado River. One of the West's most respected citizens, he died this year in Salem.
  • Nora Anderson, one of Salem's most active volunteers in promoting the cultural life of Salem, also dies this year. Her accomplishments included organizing the Salem Garden Club, assisting the Women's Club and its effort to found the Salem Public Library, promoting Salem's Junior Symphony, helping to organize the forerunner of the Assistance League and benefiting the Women's Medical Surgery Department at the Salem Hospital's General unit. Among her honors during her lifetime was the dedication of the first bench in Bush's Pasture Park, placed in a spot she enjoyed for its wild strawberries. She is possibly best remembered today for the Anderson rooms in our library. The home she shared with her husband William stands at 1577 Court Street and contributes to the Court-Chemeketa Historic District.
  • Fire at Byrd Cottage of Fairview Training Center kills three residents.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Salem in 1968

World Events
  • During this year Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. were assassinated.
  • The Democratic Convention was disrupted by bullying and brutal street fight.
  • Jacqueline Kennedy marries Aristotle Onassis.
In Salem

Salem experienced violence at the State Penitentiary this year. In the photograph above, prisoners have gathered in the exercise yard during the prison riot of March 9-10, 1968 at the Oregon State Penitentiary on State Street. Smoke billows from the building in the background. On Saturday, March 9 a riot broke out as prisoners set fire to cell blocks. 80 state policemen, Marion County Sheriff deputies, and all off-duty prison employees were called to help maintain security at the height of the 15-hour riot and fire. Charred remains of metal cabinets, twisted and melted bars at the windows bore evidence of the fire. Control was not fully restored until St. Patrick's Day, March 17. Afterward, a "Grievance Committee" of prisoners selected by inmates, gave evidence of the reasons for the outbreak.
Today the Oregon Accountability Model (OAM) lays the foundation for much of the department’s work. Unlike the 1968 time frame, the OAM promotes staff/inmate pro-social interaction with the goal of modeling appropriate behavior that will ultimately be evidenced by the offenders when they return to our communities.

When you visit

The typical Salem resident does not visit the Oregon State Department of Corrections. However, until recently there was one popular site on the property that gained a lot of positive attention. That was the small parking lot beside Mill Creek on State Street where many generations of ducks learned to flock here to feed on the offerings of families who enjoyed this wildfowl spectacle. Unfortunately, the migration of ducks across the street, often a mother with numerous offspring, became a hazard to motorists ~ as well as to the ducks. The parking spaces are now closed.
The prison can be visited with appointments to see inmates or for official business. Driving east on the main thoroughfares of Center or State Street, we pass the walls but have been so used to them, we rarely gave them more than a passing thought. It has been a part of Salem life since the 1866 move of the prison from Portland, contributing to the character of Salem as an integral part of the city's demographic, economic and social history. News about the prison is generally confined to concern about the treatment of inmates, especially their terms of incarceration.
The Oregon Department of Corrections has a website with extensive information on the prison. This resource states that the mission of the Oregon State Penitentiary is to assure public safety by providing:
  • A safe and secure environment for all persons;
  • Program and rehabilitative opportunities to enhance inmate ability to reintegrate into the community;
  • Work and leisure time activities to reduce inmate idleness;
  • Habilitative services for special need inmates within the Department of Corrections.
Of special interest is the museum and exhibit of Oregon Corrections Enterprises at 3691 State Street. This facility is not only an excellent resource for learning about the history of the state penitentiary, but has numerous examples of the furniture, signage, and other useful products manufactured by prisoners who have good records of behavior and are scheduled for release with the next five years. Call (503) 378-2677 for an appointment.

Other events
Photo by T. N. Green, Jr.

  • This year, a photograph in the Statesman Journal showed a mini-park on Ferry Street between 20th and 21st Streets that was described as "a popular place to watch the ducks." Today it is more than that: it includes a interpretive panels erected by the city explaining the important history of this location as the site of the 1864 dam that diverted Mill Creek water south and west into the Millrace. (At left in this 2007 photo) This was the source of waterpower for early Salem industry. From the dam, the Millrace flowed west along Ferry Street and crossed under it to enter the former Kay Woolen Mill.
  • On April 18, several photographs were taken when Robert Kennedy stopped in Salem on his presidential campaign. One, at the Marion County Courthouse, has a view of the Doughboy statue (still there that year) and the Grand Theater across High Street where "pro wrestling" is being featured. Kennedy was assassinated less than two months later, June 6, in Los Angeles.
  • Two new school improvements are made this year: a wing is added to Brush College School in West Salem and three-year old McNary High School gets a new parking lot and landscaping.
  • The new tower building of Salem Memorial Hospital eclipses the older structure on Winter Street.

  • Frank Hrubetz and Company plant at the airport is manufacturing carnival and show rides that are sold worldwide. A relic of the Orientator, a ride used locally at an amusement park (now the site of Paradise Island retirement homes) is stored on National Guard property near the same location. It is credited to Lee Eyerly. (2007 photograph)

  • St. Timothy Episcopal Church completes its sanctuary on Ladd Avenue in the Lancaster Drive area of Salem. As the city grows to the east, new churches and businesses are created to serve them in these suburban neighborhoods.
  • The Cherrians organization is discontinued. Since 1913 their main promotions had been the annual Salem Cherry Blossom Day and sponsorship of Salem floats in the annual Portland Rose Festival parade. Many historic photographs show crowds along State and Court Streets as residents enjoy watching the parade of elaborately decorated vehicles carrying costumed local personalities. However, as the cost of producing prize-winning floats increased, the Cherrian membership decreased, and the organization found it increasingly harder to solicit money and manpower from other local organizations and individuals.
  • A committee is formed by Mayor Vern Miller to campaign for a bond election on a Salem Civic Center, composed of a city hall, library, police and central fire station. The 26-member campaign committee composed of people who were not identified with city politics. The mayor asked Wes Sullivan, news editor of The Oregon Statesman newspaper, to be chairman.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Salem in 1967

World Events
  • 25th Amendment provides for transfer of power if president incapacitated.
  • In the Six-Day war with the Arab nations, Israel gains land and unifies Jerusalem.
  • Major American combat in Vietnam; Apollo tragedy takes three astronaut lives.
  • Race riots in Detroit; Academy Award goes to "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner"


In Salem
By 1967 our McNary Airfield had a new building, housing an attractive restaurant seen above.
The struggle to maintain a local airport was already forty years old. On May 1, 1929, the City had issued a bond for property acquisition and construction, acquiring 91 acres: the airport was dedicated that year. A complete history of our airport can be found on the City of Salem website.
Important developments included airmail service in 1941, US Air Force taking over in 1942 and United Airlines Freight Services starting in 1946. In July of 1949, the lease was signed giving the Navy the use of the hangar and other facilities on the east of the field. A $40,000 Airport Administration Building was dedicated on Sunday, August 7, 1950. Our first control tower was closed in 1953 due to budget cuts and dismantled in 1956 due to vandalism.
But conditions were improving by 1966 when the Salem Fire Department completed construction on the airport fire station and the restaurant was a pleasant place to dine while watching the flights.

When you visit
The current Airport Control Tower was built in 1973. United Airlines has operated out of the Airport Administration Building along with the U.S. Weather Service, a car rental service and a limousine service that provided bus rides to and from Portland Airport in 1977. Unfortunately, Horizon Airlines discontinued service in April 1993.
Our airport is still operated by the City of Salem and offers on-demand air taxi service, cargo shipping, the restaurant, rental cars and shuttle services. It is used by a number of area businesses, their suppliers, and parent companies as an alternative to driving. The airport is frequented by numerous companies, located in the area surrounding the city, when they conduct business in Salem. State legislators also fly into the airport during the legislative session. The ODOT-Aeronautics Section's primary office, as well the State's fleet of aircraft is located at the airport.
In addition to business flights, there are a significant number of less obvious activities that take place at the airport that contribute to the well being of the region. The airport provides FBO services, training flights, aircraft restoration, aerial photography, forest fire fighting, traffic and news reporting, shipping of "just in time" goods, law enforcement and prisoner transport, aerial advertising, real estate tours and search and rescue activities. The Army National Guard is also based at the airport. There is an on-airport industrial park that is home to several businesses that contribute to the aviation industry. We had a commercial service contract for a few months in 2008 and another in 2011, but neither was successful enough for the companies. In 2012, the federal administrators questioned whether our tower was viable.
The Airport Advisory Commission began the year of 1967. Information and application forms for any resident who wishes to be a member are on the City website.

Other events
  • Less than a month before the fair was due to open, a major fire hit the Fairgrounds. Two buildings were total losses: the 63,000-square-foot Commercial Building and the 47,188-square-foot Natural Resources Building that had been built in 1891. Forty percent of the commercial exhibit space was lost.
Salemtowne as it appeared at 1967 opening.

Former Wallace home at Salemtowne
  • Salemtowne opens in West Salem on the grounds of the former Wallace family summer home. The retirement community administration has retained the major part of the home for use of the residents. Informal, period decor gives a hint of what it looked like for the family when they spent summers there in the midst of their farmland.

Stone plaque at Walton Hall identifies site of the Oregon Institute
  • Willamette University adds the Collins Law Center and Walton Hall. A plaque in front of Walton Hall identifies the site where the Oregon Institute, the academic foundation of Willamette University, stood from 1844 to 1872 when it was destroyed by fire. Its construction at this site by the Methodist missionaries truly determined where the city would be located after their mission ended.
  • A new wing of Salem Hospital, built along Oak Street, dwarfs the old facility. Formerly a residential area known as the University Annex, because of its proximity to Willamette University, Oak Street had many homes of prominent early families. Two of these are the 1890 West-Klein house, home of the parents of Governor West, now relocated to 2983 D Street, and the home of Dr. Carleton Smith, physician and state legislator, relocated to 1335 Cannon Street. Dr. Smith's former home has been designated as a Local landmark.
  • The Willow Lake Sewage Treatment Plant opens, contributing to the health of Salem citizens.
  • Ben Maxwell, faithful photographic chronicler of Salem, dies. Many of his photographs were left to the Salem Public Library and have been cataloged for online use through the Oregon Historic Photograph Collections. His biography is found on the Salemhistory website and in Ben Maxwell's Salem, Oregon: Nuggets of History from the Salem Capital Journal by Scott McArthur.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Salem in 1966

World Events
  • American military initiates a "Search and Destroy" strategy in Vietnam combat, Anti-war protests sweep US.
  • Miranda Rights go into effect during arrests of criminal suspects.
  • The lunar module photographs the earth.
  • Masters and Johnson publish Human Sexual Response; miniskirts make their appearance.

In Salem
Four years after the Columbus Day windstorm, the Waite Fountain reconstruction is complete in Willson Park. As a crowd gathers for the dedication ceremonies, Ben Maxwell photographs the scene. In the background are buildings that characterize Salem's downtown: the Methodist Church, a symbol of the missionary beginning of the community; the Livesley Building, representing the local business enterprise; and the Marion County Courthouse, reminding us that Salem is part of a larger political administration. Willson Park is important to Salem, being part of the first city plat and, literally, the political and intellectual center of the city as it grew: adjacent to both the Oregon State Capitol and our premier educational resource, Willamette University. In this year of 1966, the city loses its authority over the park, as it had over other city property: ownership passes to the state of Oregon.

When you visit
Ownership of the park makes little difference to the visitors who are there to enjoy walking in the beautiful landscape of lawn, trees, flowers and fountains. For those who also might like to learn about Salem's history and pay respect to historical events and personalities, the opportunities are becoming more challenging. The early park featured a concert bandstand for residents, many living within walking distance in surrounding residential neighborhoods. The Waite fountain offered colored lights that gave evening strollers a visual treat. Now the bandstand, no longer in use, is relocated to the margin of the lawn and fountain, seen above as rebuilt after the 1962 windstorm, has lost its original Technicolor effect that made it such a magnet of visitor attention. The Circuit Rider was once prominently displayed before the entrance to the State House as a tribute to Salem's religious founders, is hidden is a grove of trees at the east side of the Capitol. The Breyman Brothers Memorial, standing at the park's Cottage Street entrance, was originally a memorial to local men who fought in the Spanish American War and was topped with a statue of an American military serviceman. The statue is gone and what remains of the memorial is the trough at the base that once supplied water to horses ~ a lower trough on the park side was intended for dogs. Eugene and Werner Breyman, who donated the memorial, lived in elaborate residences, now demolished, on Court Street and State Street, both within site of the memorial.
Taking prominence in Willson Park today are state flags, tributes to Native American tribes and a modern statuary group. The park is currently designed as an attraction for tourists as well as residents. In 2010, state began a plan to make improvements in the area encompassing Willson Park and North Capitol Mall as far as Center Street (originally the four Piety Hill residential blocks). This new landscaped, visitor area will be the State Capitol State Park.

Other events
  • Five fires cause property loss throughout the city: In January, the Senator Hotel on High Street; in March, at Keith Brown Lumber Plant on Front Street; in May, the Berkheimer Building on Church and Trade Streets; in November, Waters Field at 25th and Mission Streets; and (date unknown), the Peerless Bakery on North Commercial Street.
  • Douglas Hay resigns his office as Municipal Judge, being elected to the Marion County Circuit Court. In this year the term of the Salem Municipal Judge is extended to four years. Dale Pierson is appointed by the Council and later elected to the office.
Patton Building on State Street, 1886
US Bank extended (left section under tree branches)
  • The former Ladd and Bush Bank Building (now US National Bank) has been completely reconstructed and enlarged. In order to expand the bank building along State Street, the 1869 Patton Building was demolished in the previous year. The photographs above show the Patton enterprise when it was a center of local business and the 1966 US Bank extension.
  • State Street gets a new look as the historic Patton Building is demolished for the extension along State Street of the US National Bank. Formerly the Ladd and Bush Bank, the new owners completely gutted the building as it had been from 1869 to 1940, renovating the structure. However, to honor its past, the bank lobby displays many historic photographs representing Salem's downtown and the Bush family's association with the bank. The public is welcome to visit these exhibits. (To the left in both photographs is the alley beyond which the Gill Building was already a popular meeting place in the 1870s.)
  • West of 12th Street, in the University residential area of town, the Ferry-Oak Street residential neighborhood continues to change with urban growth and the expanding hospital. Only one residence remains in place and another survives by being moved.
  • Plans are made to preserve another historic building, the Methodist Parsonage, in a Mission Mill Museum location.
  • Aldrich Park in the SESNA neighborhood is getting new playground equipment this year. The park was named for Lewis Aldrich, a banker with the former Ladd and Bush Bank and first Chief Executive Officer with Pioneer Trust Company. He and his wife Donna had no children, but the trust she established in his name still benefits Salem though bequests to three parks (Grant, Northgate and Aldrich) and two grants to the Deepwood property. The first grant was for the house, gardens and land to the street on the south. Deepwood II was for the area to the west of the Deepwood I grant to Pringle Creek. This effort would not have been possible without Mary Eyre’s leadership. Through the efforts of Stuart Compton, the Walton Foundation joined the Aldrich Fund to fund the project. Financially, Deepwood was the Aldrich Funds largest commitment. It preserved a unique area, physically joined Deepwood and Bush property and today funds Deepwood's Youth Interpretive Program.
  • When the first new 35-passenger Cherriots bus arrives in Salem, it rolls off the railroad car and city administrators climb aboard for a photograph.
  • Salem has a marina on the Willamette River. Several private "yachts" accompany the Marion County Sheriff's Marine Patrol. In the next October, a windstorm demolishes the boathouse and damages the boats ~ for the third time in five years.
  • The Prime Rib Restaurant is constructed at Pine Street on the Willamette River. Fine dining and beautiful views of the river made it popular with Salem families. However, by the mid-1980s the original owners had sold the property and the restaurant had gone into foreclosure. In 1998 the building became the Stars Cabaret, a strip club. The windows that had offered a river view were masked with black paint. This enterprise closed within a few years. By 2011, the empty structure had been renovated and reopened as the Club Illusion Sport Bar and Restaurant. A fire destroyed the building the next January.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Salem in 1965

World Events
  • The US goes from advising the South Vietnamese government to active military offensives against the Vietcong.
  • President Johnson pledges a "Great Society" in America to end poverty and racial injustice; Medicare Bill is passed in Congress.
  • Voting Rights Act passes forbidding discriminatory practices: Watts burns: Malcolm X is assassinated.
  • People are talking about Ed White (the first American to walk in space), Ralph Nadar publishing "Unsafe at any Speed" (criticizing American auto manufacturers for lack of safety features) and Cassius Clay (who had changed his name to Muhammad Ali) defeating Sonny Liston for the World's Heavyweight Boxing title.
In Salem
  • The construction industry is booming. Salem Plaza (now Salem Center Mall), a new retail commercial center downtown, begins with the construction seen above. The first building (located north of Center Street, between Liberty and High Streets) will not be finished until 1966. The first completed of the "Big Box" enterprises is J.C. Penney's new store on the corner of Liberty and Chemeketa Streets with a Grand Opening in January. To the east of downtown,  the first four marble buildings of North Capitol Mall were in place in the four block area from Court to Center Street by 1959. In the next five years, the state created parking lots out of the blocks up to Union Street. In 1964, construction began at northwest corner of Union and Summer Street for the new Agricultural Building. Demolition of the neighborhood residences and construction of this building continued this year.
  • Quite a different construction project ran into difficulties. While moving the historic Jason Lee House from its original location near Mill Creek on Broadway to the new Mission Mill Museum (now Willamette Heritage Center), it was discovered that the building was too tall to pass under the Center Street Bridge.  The problem was solved by letting some of the air out of the tires on the vehicles and the move was successfully completed.
  • Vista Market, a Roth's IGA Foodliner grocery store, is established on South Library Street. Parts of the South Salem area have been annexed to the city by this year.
  • On a smaller scale, residents enjoyed their first Dunkin Donut eatery. It was in North Salem on Portland Road. 
    • During this year, Federal regulations continued to force change in how Salem industries could dispose of unhealthy materials in the public environment. The Boise Cascade Company lagoons on Minto Island were off-limits to the public because of contaminated materials settled there. Fifty year later, these lagoons are still a source of concern as the city and the state work toward expanding our Salem recreational trails with a bridge between Riverfront Park and the public sections of Minto Brown Park. It is anticipated that the Minto Brown Park, an area larger the Central Park in New York City, will someday be the center of our city. As such it will be a valuable natural resource in the growing urban community. 
    • Salem is introduced to a new line of automobiles when Datsuns are displayed in the Japan Exhibition at the State Fair this year.
    • A more traditional vehicle made news when the Salem Public Library, under the directorship of Hugh Morrow, has its first Bookmobile to serve residents in suburban neighborhoods. Mr. Morrow was the Director of the library from 1939 to 1972. His term of office began in the Carnegie Library on State Street and extended into the construction of a new public library in the Civic Center between Commercial and Liberty streets. The library collection of Oregon historic materials is named for him in honor of his service.
    • Two of Salem's outstanding citizens are involved in Salem's municipal administration: Willard Marshall (1963-5) resigns as mayor due to ill health; Dr. Vern Miller (1965-72) takes his place. As a physician, Dr. Miller had been drawn into public life by the problems of local sanitation surfacing he saw surfacing from the septic tanks of South Salem. His successful efforts to bring sewers to that vast area led him to a city council seat. That campaign also set the stage for the annexation of the South Salem areas.

    Thursday, June 17, 2010

    Salem in 1964

    World events
    • Lyndon Johnson defeats Barry Goldwater in presidential election.
    • 24th Amendment of the Constitution abolishes poll tax; Civil Rights Act passes in Congress
    • Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Martin Luther King.
    • Conflict between North Vietnamese and American vessels in Tonkin Gulf
    • The Beatles arrive in US; perform on the Ed Sullivan TV show
    In Salem

    Christmas Day brings a flood of the Willamette River and its tributaries within the city when snow and freezing temperatures early in the month gave way to warm temperatures and 4 inches of rain in a 48-hour period. Accumulated snow melted quickly creating a heavy runoff, which by December 22 swelled the Willamette at the rate of three inches per hour at Salem. The next day, the Willamette crested at 37.78 feet. More than 1,000 residents from their Keizer homes and National Guardsmen also helped evacuate 121 patients from Memorial Hospital that suffered from its proximity to Pringle Creek. Salem's new $3 million sewage treatment plant was disabled by floodwaters, and, although it remained structurally sound, raw sewage began flowing directly into the Willamette River. This happened at other locations along the river as well, creating a major health threat. The State, armed with supplies of typhoid vaccines, braced itself for problems, but fortunately no epidemic resulted.
    The flood also hit Boise-Cascade. At the plant on Commercial Street, water filled the basement. 500 employees were put out of work when the plant was knocked out of operation. Some other downtown businesses had as much as 30 inches of water. In the farm areas around the city, agricultural losses were high because the ground had not been able to thaw before the floods hit.
    Damages exceeded those of the Columbus Day Storm in 1962. Governor Mark Hatfield declared the entire State an emergency disaster area, and called the flooding, "the worst disaster ever to hit the state."
    (Thanks to Kathleen Clements Carlson and Salemhistory website.)

    When you visit
    The newspapers of 1964 carried extensive articles and pictures that are still relevant.
    The Capital Journal newspaper noted that, without the seven flood control dams on the Willamette River, the River would have crested at 37.5 feet at Salem rather than 30 feet: a height that would rival the 1861 flood that inundated Salem and completely drowned the historic towns of Champoeg and Butteville. In the photographs above, we get an idea of the flooded streets, but even more dramatic is the view of the Union Street Railroad Bridge. Walking across that that pedestrian bridge today, one notices the great distance to the river below. During this flood the waters seem to be just a few feet below the structure.
    On December 26, the Oregon Statesman published a four-page pictorial section filled with photographs of the Western Oregon disaster. The front-page title, spread over the page, read, "It Began With Ice... Then Came Snow...Then-Rain...And Then-The Flood..." The final page was titled "Hospital Abandoned" with an aerial picture of the flooded hospital at the Winter and Oak streets intersection and two other photographs of rescued patients. Photographs of the flood waters around the hospital are displayed at the History of Salem Hospital mural in B Building.
    Since the majority of downtown Salem and neighborhoods along the river are presently in the "flood plain", residents need to be aware of emergency services that are available. CERT, (Community Emergency Response Team), sponsored by the Salem Fire Department, is an excellent source of disaster information. Neighborhood volunteer groups are being established. A series of six classes teaches emergency skills that can save lives. Practice exercises are held routinely. The program is managed by Roger Stevenson who can be contacted by telephone at 503 763 3331 or by email at rstevenson@cityofsalem.net. New members are welcome.

    Other Events
    • This year the City establishes the Salem Human Rights and Relations Commission. This Board aids all, particularly minorities, disabled, and other diverse members of the community, by hearing and resolving discrimination complaints and promoting harmony. Meetings are held the second Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. Special meetings, complaint hearings, and forums may be held as needed. An outstanding 2009 program was a film presentation about past Ku Klux Klan activities in Oregon. It drew a standing-room-only crowd at Loucks Auditorium.
    • City Manager Kent Mathewson resigns and Doug Ayers is appointed.
    • Mission Mill Museum, Inc. (later Mission Mill Museum Association), is incorporated with the intent of buying the old mill and moving the 1841 Jason Lee House and Methodist Parsonage to the site. David Duniway, Oregon State Archivist 1946-1972, is the first Director of the Association. He also wrote the Salem entry for this year's edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica.
    • Since 1955, Chemeketa Community College classes, operated by Salem Public Schools, had been held at a West Salem elementary school on McNary and 3rd Street. This year it moves to the site of its present site on Lancaster Drive. The campus soon included a one-story brick building, a machine shop, a welding shop, and a number of temporary buildings.
    Water Pumping Station
    • The 1871 water pumping station at Commercial and Trade Streets is razed. In the early years of the city, this station provided power for water distribution from cisterns at various points downtown. The two round buildings were part of the operations between the millrace and Trade Street in the block between Commercial & Liberty streets. The Salem Firehouse #1 is located there now. Construction of the water works was begun in early 1871 and water was being pumped to the homes in Salem by the end of the year. Huge cisterns were located at various points in downtown Salem.
    • A former Salem citizen who became President of the United States dies this year. Herbert Hoover, as a ten-year-old orphan, came to Salem in 1885 to live with his uncle and aunt, Henry and Laura Minthorn in their Highland Addition home. Through working with his uncle, president of the Oregon Land Company, he learned many skills that helped him be successful as a member of the "pioneer class" at Stanford University in 1891 and to earn a fortune as a mining engineer. Hoover served as President of the United States from 1929 to 1933. Growing up in Salem, he became acquainted with another orphan, Charles McNary, who also became leading Republican politician of the 1920s and 1930s. In 1947, President Truman brought Hoover back into national service to help make the federal bureaucracy more efficient through the Hoover Commission.

    Wednesday, June 16, 2010

    Salem in 1963

    World Events
    • President Kennedy is assassinated
    • Martin Luther King delivers I Have a Dream speech in DC.
    • "Gulf of Tonkin" resolution in Congress escalates war between US and North Vietnam.
    • Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique sparks women's rights movement.  
    In Salem
    The Capital Manor Retirement Center has been completed and the first residents moved in. Built along the highway to Dallas in West Salem, its 10 floors contain 255 apartments with views of the Willamette River. From its first construction, it was the largest and best known of the retirement facilities in this area.
    The recent photograph shows landscaping and physical improvements that have softened the appearance of the structure. There are other additions to the retirement center including eighty-three villas added in 1987 and town houses added in 1994. Also incorporated over the years are a health care center, assisted living units, an indoor pool, fitness center, bank branch, computer lab, beauty salon, and auditorium.

    When you visit
    At Capital Manor or at other local retirement facilities, you may be visiting members of your own family or friends of many years. They have selected to live in a new environment with fewer household responsibilities or are in conditions of health that require assistance. Another factor in the benefit of a retirement facility is the fact that families today are often divided by distant career opportunities for the younger generations: senior citizens rarely live with adult children as was the custom in the past. The retirement home is a new social community and one visits friends or family there just as conveniently as at any former residence.

    Other events
    • After the disastrous Columbus Day storm in the previous year, restorations of properties in Salem continue for many months. Willson Park is a major project and a sign indicating a possible time line for completion of various elements of repair is posted for public information. The work was done by the City of Salem's Regional Park Agency. Soon thereafter, the park was transferred to the State of Oregon that is still responsible for its maintenance.
    McMahan House on Front Street after storm
    Buren House on Court Street after storm
    • Because of damage, the McMahan/McCully house on Front Street, then owned by David Duniway, is removed to John Street for a restoration. The house had been erected by David McCully in 1864 and purchased by Judge L. H. McMahon in about 1900. Mr. Duniway was Oregon State Archivist and a leading Salem proponent of historical preservation.
    • Another residential victim of the windstorm was at 745 Court Street. An uprooted fir tree caused considerable damage to a three-story Tudor style house. The porch roof and the railing of the balcony above it sustained the most damage. A photograph taken at that time, shows the shallow roof system of the uprooted tree. The residence was razed two years later for the expansion of the Presbyterian Church buildings along Court Street. The home had been built in 1907 for a prominent Salem family, the Max Burens.
    • The Jason Lee house, in its original location at 960 Broadway, is stripped of additions and prepared for a move to a temporary site while awaiting a permanent home. It was later moved to Mission Mill property, now Willamette Heritage Center.
    • Another historical structure that is moved this year is the John Boon house. It was located originally next door to the Boon Store, now Boon's Treasury, a McMenamins restaurant enterprise. The historic residence was also relocated to Willamette Heritage Center.
    • Horse racing was still a traditional entertainment at the Oregon State Fair in Salem in 1963. The grandstand looked over the Lone Oak raceway with horse barns across the track.
    • Woodry's Furniture Store at 474 Commercial Street in downtown Salem suffers a major fire during the night of June 16. The store carried furniture, appliances, floor coverings and all types of household furnishings. It had been in business at that location since 1947.
    • A fire also destroys the historic barn on the city-owned Bush Park property. It was the only building that pre-dated the 1860 purchase of the farm property from the Pringle family. It was rebuilt to resemble the original structure and is a part of the National Register Bush Park. Salem Art Association uses the building for offices, galleries and a shop.
    • J. C. Penney moves north to a new location at 305 Liberty Street. The Nelson Building, on the northwest intersection with Chemeketa Street was torn down for this new construction. The Grand Opening of the new facility would not be until 1965. Meanwhile, the former Penney's becomes the Metropolitan, a variety store.
    • Old City Hall was showing its age, and a bond measure referred to Salem voters on February 23, 1963, to build a new facility. Condemned by the Public Works Department as a fire hazard, the City Hall also had critical space limitations, forcing various City departments and agencies to seek office space elsewhere in town. Because the elevator often stalled between floors, employees joked it had been "installed by Mr. Otis himself." The bond issue failed, but its publicity alerted Salem residents to the realization that the old building was nearing its demise.
    • In accordance with a state regulation, Salem creates a Citizen Budget Committee. The members are the City Council and nine appointed citizens representing the wards of the city and one member-at-large. Their duty is to examine, analyze and recommend an annual budget for the city. The committee conducts public meetings in Council Chambers for about 6 weeks in April and May. The public is welcome to attend and testify on matters of concern or may watch on CCTV. In 2008, the City Manager, Linda Norris, held a series of four community meetings, in advance of the Budget Committee sessions, in order to inform Salem residents of the current budget priorities and to hear comments from attendees. One of these was conducted in Spanish to accommodate residents who are more comfortable discussing civic matters in that language.