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Portland, Oregon

PORTLAND, OREGON, a city, port of entry and the county-seat of Multnomah county, Oregon, U.S.A., on the Willamette river, near its confluence with the Columbia, about 120 m. by water from the Pacific, 186 m. by rail S.S.W. of Seattle and about 772 m. N. of San Francisco. Pop. (1890), 46,385; (1900), 90,426, of whom 25,876 were foreign-born (6943 Chinese); (1010 census) 207,214. Portland is served by the Northern Pacific, the Southern Pacific, the Canadian Pacific, the Great Northern and other railways, by transpacific vessels to HongKong and Yokohama, by coast-wise vessels to San Francisco, to ports on Puget Sound, in British Columbia, and in Alaska, and by river boats sailing 100 m. farther up the Willamette and up the Columbia and the Clearwater to Lewiston, Idaho. The city is built on both sides of the river (which is crossed by five bridges), and covers about 44 sq. m. On the western side the ground rises gradually for a distance of J to i\ m., and then rises abruptly 500-1000 ft. to " Portland Heights " and " Council Crest," md the much-broken surface of which rises the Coast range; on the eastern side a slightly rolling surface extends to the foothills of the Cascade Mountains. From " Portland Heights " there are fine views of the Columbia and Willamette valleys, and, particularly, of the snow-clad summits of Mt Hood, Mt Jefferson, Mt M Helen's, Mt Adams and Mt Rainier (or Tacoma). In the residence districts (King's Hill, Nob Hill, Portland Heights, Willamette Heights, Hawthorne Avenue, etc.) are pleasantly shaded streets, and grounds decorated with shrubs, especially roses, which sometimes bloom as late as January an annual " Rose Festival " is held here in June. The city has 205 acres in parks and numerous beautiful drives. It has a fine climate, the mean temperature during the winter months from 1874 to 1903 was 41 F.; the mean summer temperature for the same period 65 F. For the year ending the 31st of May 1900 the death-rate was reported to be only 9 per 1000, and in 1907 to be only 8-28 per 1000. The city's water is brought through a pipe 30 m. in length from Bull Run river, which is fed by Bull Run Lake at an elevation of more than 3000 ft. in the Cascade Mountains.

Among the prominent buildings are the Court House; the City Hall, containing the rooms of the Oregon Historical Society; the Customs House; the Protestant Episcopal Cathedral; the Public Library (with 75,000 volumes in 1908) ; several tall office buildings with frames of steel; and the Art Museum (1905). There are large Krain elevators and miles of wharfs and docks. Among educational institutions are the law and medical departments of the University of Oregon, Hill Military Academy (1901) and Columbia University (Roman Catholic, iqoi). The Oregonian, which was established here in 1850, is one of the most influential newspapers on the Pacific Slope.

The harbour is accessible for vessels of 26 ft. draught and the city's leading industry is the shipment by water and by rail of fish nally salmon) and of the products (largely lumber, wheat and fruits) of the rich Willamette and Columbia valleys. It is also an important jobbing centre. The value of the exports in 1908 amounted to $16,652,850 and the value of the imports to $2,937,513 ; the foreign trade is chiefly with Great Britain and its possessions, and with the Orient, where wheat and flour are exchanged for raw silk, tea and manila and other fibres. Portland is the principal manufacturing city of the state. The total value of its factory product in 1905 was $28,651,321. The principal manufactures were lumber and timber products ($3,577,465) and flour and grist mill products ($2,712,735); other important manufactures were packed meat, planing-mill products, foundry and machine-shop products, railway cars (repaired), cordage and twine, and canned and preserved fish (salmon), oysters and fruits and vegetables.

Portland, named after Portland, Maine, was founded in 1845 by two real-estate men from New England, and was chartered as a city in ^851. Its early growth was promoted by the demand for provisions from California soon after the discovery of gold there, and although a considerable portion was swept by tire in 1873 the city had a population of nearly 20,000 before railway communication with the East was established by the Northern Pacific in 1883. East Portland and Albina were annexed to the city in July 1891. The Lewis and Clark Centennial and American Pacific Exposition and Oriental Fair was held in Portland in 1905 in commemoration of the expedition of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to this region in 1805. The forestry building, 205 ft. long by 108 ft. wide and built of logs of Oregon fir 6 ft. or more in diameter and 54 ft. long, and a building devoted entirely to the subject of irrigation, were of unusual interest. The forestry building is now maintained as a museum chiefly for timber and timber products.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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