Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.

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History columnist Sharon Nesbit takes a look back at what was making headline's in years gone by.

The Bissinger Wool Pullery came to Troutdale 100 years ago. Local resident Joy Beldin captured this image just before the plant was demolished late last year. 1920 It was 100 years ago that Bissinger and Company announced plans to build a wool pullery on the site of a former meat packing plant at Troutdale. When finished it would employ 100 to 125 men and would keep Troutdale going during the Depression. It was only recently, that demolition equipment scraped away the Bissinger plant in preparation for development of the site. The iconic water tower still stands.

1930 Gresham's first Safeway store opened 90 years ago. The chain of food stores started in Idaho and shortly after opened offices in Portland. They were original known as Skaggs' United Stores but merged with Safeway in 1926. They counted 35 stores in 1921 but had grown to 4,000 by 1930.

1940 A report from Troutdale 80 years ago: "Men, ladies and young people are all enjoying many hours of real pleasure at the rifle range which has been constructed under the gymnasium at the school house."

1950 Pfc. Robert Jennings, the first Gresham man to die in World War II, was buried in Gresham 70 years ago. Though Jennings, 21, died in the Dec. 8, 1941, attack (the same day as Pearl Harbor) on Fort Stotsenburg in the Philippines, it would be many years before his body was recovered. A Gresham High graduate, he enlisted in April 1941. His grave is at Forest Lawn Cemetery.

1960 Jo Lewis, 38, a wife and mother living in Gresham and a member of the Modern Cleaners bowling team, bowled a perfect 300 game at Gresham Bowl 60 years ago, drawing national attention.

1970 Dr. Alan Fisher, Gresham's mayor, and Father Meyer of St. Henry Catholic Church met at a dedication 50 years ago. The priest gave the mayor a blessing with a sign of the cross and the mayor wanted to know if it would help his golf game. Certainly, said Father Meyer.

That afternoon the mayor scored a birdie and called Father Meyer to ask how long the blessing would last.

"It's an open end deal," the priest replied.

1980 Easthill Four-Square Church dedicated its new building at 701 N. Main Ave., 49 years ago with a performance by the Portland Youth Philharmonic directed by Jacob Avshalomov. The performance included choirs from all local high schools.

1990 Downtown Gresham's two-hour parking limit signs came down on most streets 30 years ago. Merchants complained citizens didn't have long enough to shop with a three-hour limit.

2000 Outlook publisher Bruce Tarbet announced a committee to bring fireworks back to Blue Lake Park on the Fourth of July, 20 years ago. They hoped to raise $10,000 for a 20-minute show.

2010 The Outlook began to keep a tally of East Wind days, beginning on Jan. 1, 10 years ago. Closing at the end of January that year, the count was 24 days of wind.

2019 Supporters launched a campaign at this time last year to restore Troutdale's old City Hall, abandoned eight years before. They proposed a plan to bring city workers out of rented offices in downtown Troutdale and back into the building. The bond issues failed to pass muster with the voters in the fall.

Researched and compiled from The Outlook files. Columnist Sharon Nesbit can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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