Chief Multnomah Bank
The Multnomah Bank opened February 2, 1948. The bank opened at 7840 SW Capitol Highway, the former location of the Multnomah Commercial and Savings Bank that closed December 1934. The location is now the restaurant side of O’Connor’s Restaurant and Bar, and you can still see the bank vault.
Officers of the new bank were Walter Raz, vice president, John B. Matheny, cashier. Bank directors were: Mr. Gard, W. A. Siegfried, pioneer Multnomah druggist, Milo G. Renner, Multnomah restaurant owner, Walter Raz, manager of Portland Milk Producers Association and Multnomah resident, Jesse J. Gard, former V. P. at United States National Bank and brother of Dwight Gard, now treasurer of Interstate Tractor and Equipment, Paul M. Rising, real estate and insurance broker of Multnomah and Floyd H. Weatherly, pioneer Multnomah grocer.
The bank became an immediate success, growing to four branches (Multnomah, Barbur Boulevard, Hillsdale, and Progress) by 1968. In 1970 it merged with First State Bank of Oregon, in 1982 First State merged with Citizens Bank of Oregon, and changed the bank’s name to Pacific Western., in 1986 PacWest merged with Key Bank. Key bank now occupies the Multnomah Bank building on SW Troy St.
See here, or our Winter 2000 newsletter for a more complete history of the Multnomah Bank.
For 40 years in the 1700s, Chief Multnomah ruled from the Cascades to the Pacific Coast as chief of the Willamettes and war chief of the Wauna confederacy. This vast network included tribes from areas now known as Okanagan Valley, Puget Sound, Willamette Valley, and the Oregon Coast. Made his home/HQ on Sauvie Island.
“He was, in fact, their idol; and to him were rendered honors as were never before granted a single chieftain in the western world. When he attended council, he was borne thither upon a mat litter, on the shoulders of eight men. It is said to be about 70 years since this chief expired, and he is still in tradition remembered and deeply mourned by the scattered remnant of his tribe.” Dr. Elijah White, 1850.