(originally the Odd Fellows Building)
Architect: Ernest Kroner, 1924
The unusual overhanging
canopies running across the top of this building are called baldachins. These exotic features are usually found over altars, thrones, or doorways in very important places. These baldachins were originally lit, and if you can imagine the downward cast of their light in the evening, it no doubt produced quite an atmospheric structure for an entering Odd Fellow. The building also has terra-cotta ornamentation; below the two-story projecting bay window is Portland's only terra-cotta marquee.
This brick building is also unusual in that its construction was influenced by the spiritual beliefs of the Odd Fellows, a fraternal group established in the 7th century that claims Biblical roots. With that in mind, this structure looks a little like the combination of a Gothic church, suggested by the two-story cathedral-style windows on the top floor, and an apartment building. The original purpose of the building was two-fold as well: it was to serve as lodge building and home to retail offices. It was sold by the Odd Fellows and remodeled in 1980 as part of a H.U.D. project, but the exterior of the building remains pretty much as it was.
German-born Ernest Kroner (1866-1955) specialized in churches and schools. But being both German and politically active, Kroner found himself harassed during the war years by intolerant Portlanders.
* Portland's original Odd Fellows Hall at 1st and Alder had a bell-tower that functioned as a fire alarm until 1874. The city's next fire-bell weighed two tons (with a 50-pound clapper); supposedly, it could be heard from Oregon City to Sauvie Island.Less Text