C. E. Smith (the original owner of this building) was a member of a
dreaded group who called themselves Savoyards. This fraternity was distinguished by their feverish dedication to community theater and the works of Gilbert and Sullivan. And when this building was remodeled six years after its construction, Gilbert and Sullivan's highly successful operetta The Mikado or the Town of Titipu was being performed in both Europe and America. On the basis of that work's popularity, the structure was named Mikado. ("Titipu Block" would have sounded foolish at best.)
The Victorian Italianate building has rich detailing on the upper two stories, including exotic detailing on the cornice. Tenants over the years have included a Civil War veterans' organization (the "Grand Army of the Republic") and Goodwill Industries. In 1971, thieves took wooden carvings from the heraldic crest at the top of the building and a cast-iron head from the arched entry.
* This area was once site of a number of flop houses from which unwary sailors would find themselves shanghaied onto ships leaving Portland.