Francis Pettygrove wanted the new settlement to be named Portland and Asa Lovejoy preferred to name it after Boston. They met in the front parlor of the Francis Ermatinger House in 1845 and tossed a coin.
In 2011 The Ermatinger House was included on our first list of Oregon’s Most Endangered Places because the house was so structurally compromised that it could fall in on itself. The building had shifted so much that the city of Oregon City, who owned the structure, would not re-install the recently-restored windows for fear they would be damaged or ruined as the house continued to move.
Working with members of the City Planner’s office, Restore Oregon awarded a seed grant of $2,500 to fund a rehabilitation plan, including architectural and engineering strategies.
Since then, more than $638,000 for restoration has been raised by Oregon City (kudos to City Council for their commitment!) and they are ready to pour the new foundation. You can read more about the ongoing work and view a slideshow in the Oregonian article “Oregon City tears into the Ermatinger House, restoration of Oregon’s 3rd-oldest house begins.”
The path to preservation takes time and that makes it even more exciting to see the alumni of our initial list of Oregon’s Most Endangered Places moving into the “saved” column. The Egyptian Theater in Coos Bay, another class of 2011 alumnus, celebrated its grand re-opening last month.
We are currently accepting nominations for the 2014-2015 list of Oregon’s Most Endangered Places. If you know of a place that is endangered, nominate it to our 2014-2015 list by August 11th.