More builders: William G. Bohn and H.R. “Hallie” Kibler

This week we’ve added a couple more biographies of eastside builders and lists of their homes to The Builders page, bringing the library of profiles there to 20 homebuilders who’ve left their imprint on our neighborhoods.

This week, meet William G. Bohn, whose second-wind career in the 1920s capped a career in the wood business that started in the upper Midwest. His work stands today along NE 18th Avenue near Sabin School and in Montavilla. He was one of many who blended homebuilding, finance, and salesmanship to take advantage of the heady building years of the mid 1920s.

The second profile this week is H.R. “Hallie” Kibler—Portland’s “Reliable Builder” who started his homebuilding business at age 22 in 1915 (the two sturdy Craftsman bungalows at the northwest corner of 33rd and Prescott were his first and second jobs and still stand today). Kibler served in France during World War 1 and returned to Portland to build in Alameda and nearby neighborhoods before moving to Eastmoreland.

More profiles to follow soon. Our research practice provides a steady stream of insights about local builders.

On an unrelated note, we’ve been out walking in the early evenings here at the bottom of the year—when it feels like it’s getting dark by 4:00 in the afternoon. This is a great time to appreciate the holiday lights and the glow of neighborhood homes and get some exercise. Here are some suggestions to get outside and explore the neighborhoods.

7 responses

  1. Wow! This new addition of builders was particularly exciting as it turns out I found out Mr. William Bohn was the builder of our house at 3906 NE 16th!! I just happened to sign up for your newsletter a few days ago and am LOVING your posts!!
    Thank you, THANK YOU!!

  2. Hi Doug. We love your old home history postings. Do you have any insight who built the row of bungalows on the south side of NE Bryce St. between NE 28 and NE 26? We live at 2714 NE Bryce. Michael Schultz.

    Sent from my iPhone


    • Hi Jim. Glad you enjoy the blog.

      Yes, that’s quite a row of nice bungalows, isn’t it? Yours was built by E.G. Laird in 1921, and your pre-address change address was 852 Bryce. Two of the houses on your block are Kibler’s (profiled today): 2614 built in 1922; and 2702 built in 1921. 2644 and 2724 were both built by Robert Hannah in 1922 and 1923 respectively. 2636 was built by John Piner in 1925. On first glance, the remaining bungalow appear to be referred to by the first owner rather than the builder…it would take a little more looking to verify. Everything on that block was built between 1920-1925 and most in 1921-1922, which was the big boom of building in Alameda.

  3. I am told that the builder of our house on NE Mallory was W.E. Love. He is listed as the builder for three other houses on Walnut Park, the Killingsworth addition. Do you have any info about Mr Love? Our house is dated 1911 so was likely being built in 1909-1910.
    Our house was owned first by A.J. Kroenert (or Kronert), who was part of a mill called University Lumber and Shingle Company (c. 1910). The house includes a lot of quartered oak in the interior and much of the exterior structure and exterior finish was cedar; the first floor is white oak and second floor ceiling is clear hemlock: the details makes me believe that the fact that Kroenert was associated with a mill made it more likely that the connection was a reason for the qualities of the materials.
    Any thoughts?
    By the way, Kroenert was associated with some questionable business both before the house and after… There are a bunch of stories to dig up, I think.

    • Hello and thanks for dropping by the blog. A look through old newspapers shows him as a busy builder in the Piedmont area starting in 1909: A house on Commercial between Jessup and Jarret in 1909; a home on Jessup between Vancouver and Haight in 1910; a home on Cleveland between Jessup and Jarrett in 1911; your house (probably) on Mallory between Emerson and Sumner in May of 1911; selling a piece property in Piedmont later that year. Would be fun to take a deeper dive into who he was a builder and the long list of his work, and to explore the Kroenert story a little further…

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