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Portland Daily Abstracts Index

An index to building information in the newspaper Portland Daily Abstract

Take a look at these related guides.

An Index and Summary of Oregon Building Information in the Portland Daily Abstract (1906-1909)


In 1992, Michael Shellenbarger published an index to building information in The Portland Daily Abstract  as an initial phase of a larger vision to capture architectural information in several early newspapers of Portland, Oregon.  According to Shellenbarger, these early newspapers were primary sources of early 20th century building activity in Oregon.  The newspapers thrived at a time when "the building industry was the dynamic center of economic and cultural life to an extent that is difficult to imagine today, and this building activity was the major emphasis of these papers' six daily issues per week."  The  Portland Daily Abstract and its kindred newspapers flourished when "Architects were the celebrities of the front page." *

Shellenbarger's index was generated from a database he created which had numerous fields enabling the output of information in a variety of useful ways. Thus he used 'summary' in the title of this work to emphasize how the Index reveals the history of  individual works, architects, neighborhoods, materials, and cities.  The database was long inaccessible because of the outdated DataEase software employed which resided on 5-1/4" DOS-based floppy disks. Michael C. Byrnes, Portland, led a group in 2017 and 2018 whose collective efforts enabled access to Shellenbarger's data. The database content is now accessible in an Excel spreadsheet.


The original 10 indexes, introductory matter, and appendix are reproduced in 29 separate PDF files to facilitate access and downloading. This guide recreates the layout of the print volumes and links to the digital archival files and in some cases a specific PDF page in the file.  

Index/Summary 1, 2 and 3 contain the most complete references and information. Index/Summary 4 through 10 contain partial information requiring one to look up the building's name in Index/Summary 2(A) or 2(B) for more complete information and references.

Introductory Matter: Acknowledgments, Contents
Introduction (go to p.5)
Project Methodology (go to p. 6)
Index/Summary 1: Topics Other than Specific Buildings (go to p.13)
Index/Summary 2A: Buildings Sorted by City and Building Names (Portland excluded)
Index/Summary 2B: Portland Buildings Sorted by Building Names:
Index/Summary 3: Buildings Sorted by Names of the Architect/Designers:
Index/Summary 4: Buildings Sorted by Names of Contractors and Other Names:
Index/Summary 5: Buildings Sorted by Significant Features
Index/Summary 6: Buildings Sorted by Use (houses excluded) (begins on p. 30)
Index/Summary 7: Portland Buildings Sorted by Section and Primary Street:
Index/Summary 8: Portland Buildings Sorted by Section and Second Street:
Index/Summary 9: Portland Buildngs Sorted by Section and Third Street
Index/Summary 10: Portland Buildings Sorted by District or Addition
Appendix A: Portland Street Name Conversions to Current Names (begins on p. 41)

* Quotations are from Introduction of the Index.

Print copies of An Index and Summary of Oregon Building Information in the Portland Daily Abstract 1906-1910 are located in the Design Library and in the UO Libraries Special Collections and University Archives. Consult the library catalog for call number and other location information.

The Portland Daily Abstract is available on microfilm in the University of Oregon Libraries. 

The Portland Daily Abstract index was digitized under the direction of Karen Estlund, Digital Collections Coordinator, Metadata Services and Digital Projects, University of Oregon Libraries, November 2010.  This guide relabels and links to the archival files  that exist in the University of Oregon's digital repository, Scholar's Bank.

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