Canby's Historical Review Board gets an infusion of new faces and enthusiasm

Keeping track of, and placing long-term value on the historic place of Canby seems obvious enough to most people.

Unfortunately, taking the time out of schedules to make sure that history is preserved for the coming generations is easier said than done – and easier asked for than answered.

That’s why Jamie Stickel, Canby’s Main Street Program manager, likes what’s been happening in Canby the last couple of months.

The city’s Historic Review Board, which had faded from the landscape due to lack of interest, is back and energized.

“We found a group of people that are interested in the great things we have in this community and want to showcase it,” Stickel said. “That has reinvigorated our Historic Review Board, which in turn helped the city continue to have its certified local government status,” Stickel said. “That opens us up to be able to apply for grants.”

And by being able to apply for grants, the HRB will be able to produce programs that will draw attention to Canby’s historic buildings and stories.

“It’s interesting to see what great things we have in this city,” Stickel said.

Stickel said there is often a misconception in Canby about the volume of historically relevant homes and businesses that exist. Making sure Canby residents know how abundant history is in the area is important.

“It is easy to sit around and say we don’t have much that’s historic here, but that’s just not true,” Stickel said. “A 2009 reconnaissance study showed us that we have a lot of historic buildings here. It has been fun to learn more about Canby’s history. With our restored Historic Review Board, this is a neat project to work on.”

What is the group working on now? Thanks to a grant its has already received, the Historic Review Board is looking into a plaque program for historic downtown buildings – something with a bit of historic context or a story attached to it. The goal is the not only recognize the historic significance of the buildings, but to perhaps one day create a walking tour around town.

“I hope that we take what was planned for the grant and get this plaque program going -- take that and really see how far we can run with it,” Stickel said. “We hope to leverage our assets and see what we can do. Every day that goes by, more history is behind us.

“With the newspaper, historical society and Depot Museum, we have a lot of assets that we can really bring together and do a great job of reaching people and, hopefully, getting more involved,” she added. “You never know what part of history will attract tourists or Canby citizens to come take a look. One person might be seeing the historic buildings on a walking tour, another might be a speaker telling stories of old Canby.”

To get involved, contact Stickel at 503-266-0772 or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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