Famed Portland, Oregon Home Makes National Historical Register

Famed Portland, Oregon Home Makes National Historical Register

Published 11/26/2019 at 4:52 AM PDT

Famed Portland, Oregon Home Makes National Historical Register (Portland, Oregon) – Portland, Oregon has a new feather in its cap when it comes to nationally recognized history. The Fried-Durkheimer house in the elegant and extravagant Portland Heights area just made the National Regional of Historic Places, through efforts by the Oregon State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation (SACHP).

The ornate home is one of the few examples of old Italianate Town House-style homes left in the Rose City, something that was all the rage back in the 1890s.

The National Park Service – which maintains the National Register of Historic Places – accepted the committee’s nomination on November 8, 2019, after being nominated in June. It now brings the number of registered historic homes to 603 in Portland.

Constructed in 1880 for Morris and Annie Marks, the Fried-Durkheimer House is a rather famous remnant of the style. The house features original exterior details that define the style such as the large ornamented windows, overhanging eaves with decorative brackets, curved hall stair, and marble fireplace surround.

Over 100 years later, in 2017 city officials moved the Fried-Durkheimer House approximately 5 blocks east and 12 blocks south of its original location. Pressures were mounting to demolish the house because of developers looking to build in that spot, and a somewhat grass-roots effort led to the last-minute save.

Popular in Portland between the 1860s and 1890s, the Italianate style emerged as a response to the relatively plain, bold, straight lines of the Greek Revival and Gothic Revival styles. Italianate emphasized height, ornate arches, balconies with balustrades all the while maintaining balance, unity, and a strong emphasis on the horizontal line.

The Italianate residential-style buildings’ popularity as urban/town residences was perhaps their downfall, given the rapid growth of Portland’s downtown cores from the late 1800s to the twentieth century. As the city center became a metropolitan hub, single-family residential constructions were routinely demolished for large scale commercial and multi-family buildings.

The National Register is maintained by the National Park Service under the authority of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966.

More information about the National Register and recent Oregon lists is online at www.oregonheritage.org (click on “National Register” at left of page).

Properties listed in the National Register are:

  • Recognized as significant to the nation, state, or community;
  • Considered in the planning of federal or federally assisted projects;
  • Eligible for federal and state tax benefits;
  • Qualify for historic preservation grants when funds are available;
  • Eligible for leniency in meeting certain building code requirements;
  • Subject to local laws pertaining to the conservation and protection of historic resources.

National Register listing does not place any restrictions on a property at the state or federal level, unless property owners choose to participate in tax benefit or grant programs.


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