Then and Now – Switch

This summer we did a series of “Then and Now” posters for Multnomah businesses. The posters features a vintage image of the building housing the business, a small inset image of the current facade, and a brief history of the building. Over the next several weeks we’re going to publish the images and an expanded version of the histories here. This week’s “Then and Now” is Switch.

Then and Now - Switch, Photo of Library (L), and Liquor Store (R), ca 1952.

Then and Now – Switch, Photo of Library (L), and Liquor Store (R), ca 1952.

The caption reads: Kelvin Raz built this structure in 1942 for the U.S. Postal Service. Harold Larsen opened a liquor store at this location when the post office moved out in 1951. Later occupants included Jeri’s Fashion Warehouse in the 1960’s, antique shops and a stained glass shop in the 1970’s, Multnomah Station Jewelry in the 1980s, Prince of Peace Worship Center and Toby’s Antiques in the 1990s, and Baby Oh Baby in the 2000s.

7871 SW Capitol Highway

Calvin Raz built this structure in 1942 for the U.S. Postal Service. From 1920-1942, the post office was located at 7826 SW 35th. In the years between 1951-1957, the post office was located at 3613 SW Troy and in 1957 moved across the street to a new building at 3675. The Oregon Liquor Control Commission operated a liquor store at this location when the post office moved out. The OLCC later moved to the present location on SW Barbur Blvd near Capitol Hwy. Residents of this building in later years included Jeri’s Fashion Warehouse, antique shops, stained glass craftsmen and Multnomah Station Jewelry.

bef 1942 ?
1942-1951 Multnomah Branch U.S. Post Office- Kelvin Raz builder
1951-? OLCC #73 Liquor store- Harold Larsen (Moved to Barber Blvd)
1960’s Jeri’s Fashion Warehouse
1970’s Antique Shops
1970’s Stained Glass Shop
1970’s Multnomah Station Jewelry (moved from 7813)
1988 Aunt Bee Collections
1988 Regina’s Old Fashioned Jewelry
1990’s Prince of Peace Worship Center
1990’s Toby’s Antiques
2000’s Baby Oh Baby Shop
2010 Switch Fashions

7875 SW Capitol Highway

This little building became the Multnomah station branch of the Multnomah County Library during the 1940’s. The library was originally in the Multnomah Community Church beginning 1922. As early as 1913, Multnomah County Library had book stations in local Multnomah homes. Librarian, Mrs. Anderson moved with the library to the new Hillsdale branch in 1957. Occupants of this building in the past has been attorneys, florists and antique shops. The original building was in disrepair and unsafe and therefore, torn down in 2000’s. Today a new building is on this site but a
portion of the building is painted red in honor of the beloved little red library building.

bef 1940 ?
1940’s-1957 Multnomah Co. Library- Mrs Anderson, Mrs Lowenberg. Librarian (moved to Hillsdale)
1957 Attorney office
Bef 1979 J.K. Hills Antiques (moved to 7832)
1980’s Cracker Box Antiques
1992 Room for Improvement
1990’s Flower Shop
1999 Village Rose Pottery & Porcelain Repair
[Building demolished]
2000’s-? Little Shop of Drawers
? – Present – Switch

Patti Waitman-Ingebretsen researched this building’s history. A list of all known occupants of all Multnomah commercial buildings is available from the Multnomah Historical Association, just email us.

Switch, July 2, 2014.

Switch, July 2, 2014.

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1 Response

  1. Bruce Boland says:

    Before mid 1971 there was no US Postal Service. The correct name was Post Office Department.

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