AKA: Ainsworth Block, Portland, OR

Structure Type: built works - commercial buildings - banks (buildings); built works - commercial buildings - office buildings

Designers: Day, Clinton, Architect (firm); Clinton Day (architect)

Dates: constructed 1881

3 stories

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SW 3rd Street and Oak Street
Portland, OR

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Building History

The San Francisco-based architect, Clinton Day (1847-1916), designed this large office/bank building for Captain J.C. Ainsworth, who controlled the Ainsworth Bank, an ancestor of the later U.S. National Bank of Portland. A year later, Day also designed another bank, the First National Bank Building, at SW 1st Street and Washington Street. Ainsworth was an ambitious man who sought to extend his timber and transportation businesses up and down the Pacific Coast. He and his associate, Captain R. R. Thompson, founded the Redondo Railway Company on 04/01/1889, a railroad that could haul Northwest timber and other goods from their ships docked at their harbor in Redondo Beach, CA, to the burgeoning new Los Angeles, CA, market. Los Angeles had undergone a real estate speculation frenzy and building boom during the mid-1880s, raising the value of timber in that region.


PCAD id: 15374