Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Pomona Hotel

Erickson's Saloon Building, 1912

As long as I'm somewhat off topic with my last post, I'm going to include another sign on an Old Town/Chinatown building. I took the black-and-white photo in 1971 and the color photo in 2008, obviously after the sign was long gone. What I find particularly amusing is that in the old photo, on the sidewalk face (right side of the photo), was a nail hammered between the bricks, with a piece of rusted wire twisted around it. Incredibly that bit of wire is still there, 37 years later.

The Pomona Hotel gained notoriety when an arsonist torched the building in July, 1975, killing eight and injuring 26.

This was on NW 2nd just north of West Burnside.



The Pomona Hotel was housed in the Erickson's Saloon building which has a colorful past. This from the historical plaque mounted outside the building:

"Erickson's fame spread around the world, as sailors carried word of its 16-ounce nickel beer (hard drinks two for a quarter), its free meal of gargantuan proportions (as long as you kept drinking), its bar 684 feet in length and its delightful lady performers in the Cabaret Grill. Loggers, farm hands and other robust working men came to Erickson's, some to spend their stakes in one night revelries, buying drinks all around.

"The powerful and elite of Portland also came to Erickson's. The balcony afforded those of wealth a better view of the stage and of the 'sea of life' undulating below.

"On the top floor there were cardrooms and cribs - small cubicle-like rooms on either side of the hall - for entertainments of a more private kind."

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