November 2020 News

In this edition: Spooky Halloween in Garden Home, Cell tower at the Garden Home Recreation Center, Garden Home Ballot Drop Box, Native American Heritage Month in Washington County, New Garden Home History flag, Patronize our Garden Home Businesses, Reflections on COVID-19 in our 2020 Garden Home lives.

Welcome to our website about historic Garden Home. In the People and Places pages, you’ll find well over two hundred stories, and over two thousand photos of vintage Garden Home and residents attending our events. You can contact us at or call Elaine Shreve at 503-246-5879 or Esta Mapes at 503-246-5758 or Stan Houseman at 503-679-3691.
Thanks to each one of you for letting us know about your Garden Home history artifacts, old photos, stories, history books, or how you might be able to help document our history. We have a wonderful community because we have caring people!

Upcoming Events

Thanks to a generous donor, our special 10th Anniversary Gazette will be printed and postal mailed to our entire list of subscribers. If you are not on our postal newsletter mailing list and would like to receive this collectible hard-copy Gazette, please send your name and current postal address to

Due to the current public health recommendations in response to the COVID-19 virus, we will not have slide programs until the Garden Home Recreation Center re-opens. We have interesting programs planned for the future. Take good care of yourselves.


Spooky Halloween in Garden Home! Hope you saw the giant spook looking over the fence on SW Garden Home Road at about SW 80th Ave. The green lights lit up the Halloween “Garden Home Graveyard” near the north end of SW 82nd Avenue.

2020 Halloween - Spook - SW Garden Home Rd

2020 Halloween – Spook – SW Garden Home Rd

2020 Halloween tombstones - Kirstin Lurtz on SW 82nd Ave

2020 Halloween tombstones – Kirstin Lurtz on SW 82nd Ave

2020 Halloween tombstones at night - Kirstin Lurtz on SW 82nd Ave

2020 Halloween tombstones at night – Kirstin Lurtz on SW 82nd Ave

Cell tower at the Garden Home Recreation Center. We caught the cell tower work on a beautiful day! This tower on the Garden Home Recreation Center’s property is owned by T-Mobile. Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile lease the property. Tualatin Hills Park and Recreation District (THPRD) receives approximately $60,000 annually for this lease. Thanks to Mark A. Hokkanen, CPRP, Risk and Contract Manager for THPRD for this information.

Rec Center cell tower - crane

Rec Center cell tower – crane

Rec Center cell tower - worker up high

Rec Center cell tower – worker up high

Garden Home Ballot Drop Box. Thanks to Garden Home Community Library for hosting an official Ballot Box for the recent election. A steady stream of people found the box just inside the Library door, with many a “no, not in the book slot!”

November 2020: Native American Heritage Month in Washington County. The Washington County Board of Commissioners proclaimed November 3, 2020 as Native American Heritage Month in Washington County. We support the proclamation which acknowledges that Washington County, Oregon rests on land that was first inhabited by the Atfalati Kalapuyans, also called the Tualatin people, who flourished here for thousands of years.

See the Washington County website for more on how this decision was made and the actual proclamation (PDF).

Also see the This IS Kalapuyan Land virtual exhibit on the Five Oaks Museum website (formerly the Washington County Museum).

Five Oaks Museum virtual Atfalati exhibit 1

Five Oaks Museum virtual Atfalati exhibit

Five Oaks Museum virtual Atfalati exhibit 2

Five Oaks Museum virtual Atfalati exhibit

New Garden Home History flag. This new flag for Garden Home history is flying at Jan Fredrickson’s Wormwood Manor at the north end of SW 78th Avenue until Thanksgiving when the flag pole will become a holiday tree. The flag will be displayed on the front of the house, and on the pole again in January. The flag, designed and developed by Stan and Susan Houseman, features the Camassia (Camas Lily), symbolizing the many years that the Atfalati Kalapuya Indians lived in Garden Home by showing one of their important foods. Thanks to Stan, Susan, Jan and Kevin Mistler for the flag and pole!

Garden Home History flag

Garden Home History flag

Patronize our Garden Home Businesses. Let’s keep our local businesses alive! We saw Shelly Bigley, owner of the Old Market Pub, on TV speak about the impact of COVID19 restrictions. Other businesses are also affected and need our patronage. Within the next year, we hope the shopping center will be newly revitalized. Note that the blue postal mailbox has been moved to the strip mall containing Starbucks and Ploy’s Thai Restaurant and Hyperion Computerworks.

2020 Old Market Pub - south outside

2020 Old Market Pub – south outside

Reflections on COVID-19 in our 2020 Garden Home lives. All of our lives have changed coping with this historic pandemic of the COVID-19 virus. As of mid-November, Oregon is experiencing over 1,000 new cases daily, and so far this year, more than 56,000 COVID-19 cases and 772 COVID-19 deaths. The Governor has issued restrictions on group sizes, business closings to contain the numbers, social distancing and hand washing or hand sanitizers. Sports have special restrictions and are played to empty stadiums.

Our Board members have shared some of the ways the COVID virus has affected their lives, which we have summarized below:

It’s wonderful to hear children’s voices outside playing in the yards and on the street during the day with public schools offering online courses. Many students do not do well with online classes and miss their friends, as we all do. Graduation plans are a challenge with often poor online grades. We miss seeing our grandchildren and being part of their lives. Just seeing children, friends, and neighbors seems more enjoyable. We worry about all of our young families.

With our mostly-stay-at-home lives, we’ve learned how to do many home repairs, cooking, hair cutting and yard landscaping and revisions. We wave at our neighbors, enjoy some street talk, and hope they see our smiles behind the masks. We may change dog-walk times and routes to avoid meeting people. We see more wildlife such as skunks, raccoons, even coyotes in our yards and streets, even a deer in the yard. Reduction of street traffic or we’re all home more looking out the windows?

When quickly shopping or doing errands, we all wear masks, call ahead to see if some businesses are open, avoid all crowds or even small groups of people. We’ve learned to cope with scarce items such as paper goods, flour, yeast, and other “survival” needs. We wear masks even in the medical clinics, hair salons, greeting neighbors outside, at the bank, everywhere. Most friends and relatives in care facilities cannot have any visitors in the buildings or only with major restrictions.

We miss our in-person contact with our friends and relatives. Our phone calls, Zoom internet communications, emails, even letters, have become more important. More TV watching, home projects, walking, and more attention to meals and cooking. Living alone means really alone for many. We learn how to order groceries and other items from the internet. Most grocery stores employ “shoppers” who will select your grocery list and deliver it to your car or home. Takeout food is available by drive-through only for now. Diminished hearing is common with plexiglass shields and mask wearing. One has the urge to take down the mask in order to hear better!

We all share in the “COVID Fatigue” and wonder how much longer these restrictions will be necessary. The developing COVID vaccines may be available in 2021. We worry about the more vulnerable people, our older friends and relatives and others with underlying conditions. Our own vulnerability is tested each day with any activities outside of the home. We are more aware of the advantages and blessings that we each share unlike so many other people. Be well, wash hands, wear masks, social distance, take good care of yourselves and others!

News from October

Pumpkins in Garden Home: We’re hoping that your tomatoes are ripening, that you and your family are well, that children are getting ready for a creative new school year, and that everyone has had some fun this summer. Here is a wonderful front yard pumpkin patch seen in Garden Home the first of September!

Garden Home pumpkins Sep 1, 2020

Garden Home pumpkins Sep 1, 2020

Old Market Pub and Brewery: Thanks to the very generous offer from Andy and Shelly Bigley of the Old Market Pub to display some of our artifacts from the Garden Home Thriftway. Stop in for takeout, dine-in, a drink, some pizza, or a sandwich, and check out our two photos from the 1905 Lewis & Clark Centennial in Portland. The vintage Garden Home postal safe and the three train reliefs are also there. Stan Houseman also snagged the huge Post Office eagle and postal schedule which will go up soon. Thanks to Stan for moving this project along and to Colin Lamb for the photos and train reliefs. Elaine Shreve wrote the histories for all of the photos and reliefs. Old Market Pub and Brewery: 6959 SW Multnomah Blvd, 503-244-2337. Read our story about the history of the Old Market Pub and Brewery.

Historic Log Home Demolished: We were sorry to see the Judy George log home falling to the demolition bulldozer. This log home on SW 87th Ave. (south of Garden Home Road) was built in 1900 on what was then called Westgard Street. This modest house had been added to until it was not salvageable. The lot is being prepared for its new home.

Log house construction

New Housing Developments: You have probably noticed the two large housing developments on SW Garden Home Road. Both the Piper Ridge development at SW 87th Ave. and the Garden Home Estates between SW 81st Ave. and SW 78th Ave. will each have 9 new homes developed by Westwood Homes (plus the original homes on the respective lots). Both properties were previously large pastures with horses in the last century. Early Garden Home was platted with large lots for typical family needs such as a cow, chickens, fruit trees, pasture, and a garden.

Windmill Fun: The original windmill photo from Shirley Gertsch Bartels was so washed out that you could hardly see these two men from Shattuck Dairy having fun. Thanks to David Delgado, a new resident who offered to improve some of our vintage photos, you can enjoy the fun…and bravado…from these men!

Shattuck Dairy - showing off on windmill used to pump water - edited by David Delgado

Shattuck Dairy – showing off on windmill used to pump water – edited by David Delgado

Thriftway Opening in 1981: Thanks to Bob and Sharon Cram for sharing this flyer from 1981 and helping us to clarify the Thriftway dates. The current 1995 store building with the bell tower was added on to this 1981 building. Read the story about the history of Lamb’s Thriftway.

1981 flyer for new Thriftway

1981 flyer for new Thriftway

Have you noticed the old rail bed at SW 71st Ave.? See our new story about the southern rail line carving through Garden Home and the Middlebrooks’ property.

Middlebrooks railway bed entry at SW 71st

Middlebrooks railway bed entry at SW 71st

Get Involved

You are invited to our Board meetings which are held the second Monday of most months, 6:30 pm at the Garden Home Recreation Center. We often begin with slide show presentations. All are welcome to attend our meetings. We’re an active and fun group, we have lots of opportunities to get involved!
Historic Garden Home street sign

Historic Garden Home street sign

Historic Garden Home street signs: We currently have about 35 of the Historic Garden Home street sign toppers in our community. Each sign was purchased by a friend or family member to honor their loved one. Click here to view photos of the signs and for information about sponsoring a sign.

Our generous donors permit us to print and mail this newsletter ($140) for our non-e-mail people and for the Garden Home Recreation Center. We also replace the Historic Garden Home street signs once for signs that disappear, current cost for each sign, $60. With our latest order, we’ll have about 35 signs out in our neighborhoods. We also have website costs, printing, paper, plaques and many other costs of an organization. Donor names are listed on our History Bulletin Board at the Recreation Center. Thank you to all of our donors and to all of our volunteers for their time and skills.

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