New Section on The Builders

Today I’ve added a new section to the Alameda History website that provides a focus on the builders. Look up above and to the right and you’ll see the word “The Builders.” From there you can click into a sub-page that provides links off into biographies I’m writing about the men and women who shaped our neighborhood landscape. I’ve started out with three builders I am very familiar with, but soon there will be more.

Fans of houses built by Ken Birkemeier will be glad to know I’ve made contact with his family and will have lots to share soon, including early photos of some houses and a complete listing of Birkemeier houses in the neighborhood.

My goal in focusing on the builders is to pay tribute to them, to take account of and remember their work, and to create an interest, appreciation and curiosity about the homes we all live in.

One response

  1. Your work in adding the section on builders is phenomenal, extraordinary. I hope that all of your neighbors, and fellow Portlanders, appreciate what you are doing. You are giving all of us a great gift.

    Reading about the builders raises, for me, a question you and I have wondered about previously: where did their designs come from? It will be interesting to see if you can discover any clues to this part of the puzzle.

    I especially enjoyed learning that builder Donahue built near the streetcar lines. This predilection is what got many of our turn of the century cities built. Builder and developer S. E. Gross, in Chicago, comes to mind – he would give prospective buyers streetcar directions to his subdivisions in his advertising, and often in multiple languages.

    I will look forward to learning more as you make further discoveries.

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