Jan 29 2010

Welcome to the cyber catacombs of McMenamins history. It's a wondrous, multi-layered and lyrical realm brimming with life, from the day-to-day to the extraordinary.  Here, heralded pillars of society stand shoulder-to-shoulder with gloriously seedy charlatans. It's an ongoing journey to showcase the wildly divergent histories of McMenamins' properties and place them into the context of the Pacific Northwest and points far beyond.

McMenamins proudly commemorates the historically significant characters, objects, and events that occasionally turn up in connection with our locations, but we equally relish and celebrate the odd, unusual and unexpected gems that manifest with regularity.

I look forward to exploring with you in this forum (and others) the remarkable finds unearthed over the years, as well as calling on you to help identify and learn about new ones. Over the next weeks and months, I'll be continuing to add more history elements to the website, in particular a separate history page, offering a virtual storehouse of McMenamins' historical material: photos, articles, video clips, interview transcripts, and eventually podcasts, and resource links, etc. Check back here regularly for new blog entries, and stay in touch, I want to hear your ideas, opinions and research leads.

About the author: Tim is the McMenamins Historian.
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#1 Troy

Yippie! I'm looking forward to more historical details. McMenamin's has always impressed me with the amount of detail in building preservation/revitalization and their stories of the past. It will be fun to geek out on the details you'll provide.

#2 Constance Shaw Warner

Hi! I was just sending my grandchildren emails regarding their Irish heritage for St. Patrick's Day, 3/17/10. Having finished the emails with the statement that there were also McMenamin's and Kennedy's in my mother's family Shearon-O'Donnell in Eckley,Pennsylvania (near Hazelton), I was searching for some history on the McMenamin name and JACKPOT - found McMenamin-Kennedy together! My mother, Mrs. Eleanor Marie Shearon Shaw (1910-1977), told me that some of her relatives had moved out west. - There was a monsignor in Colorado - a cousin in Pasadena, CA - any of these places or names sound familiar? Do you think there's a connection? I visited St. Anne's cemetery in Freeland, PA in 2004. There are many McMenamin's buried there. I hope to hear from you, Connie Warner,Florida

#3 Ryan

I would be excited to read more about the creation of McMenamins properties, particularly regarding the founders and how they came up with (in my opinion) an extremely unique, original, and very fun idea.

#4 Judson Callaway

I’m researching a biography on “Colonel” Harry Haynes and will be visiting Forest Grove and Hillsboro in May 2011. During a previous visit two years ago, I was surprised and intrigued to find a Grand Lodge room named in his honor. Haynes was, of course, a Mason in Utah and in Oregon but died before the Grand Lodge opened. Was he, I wonder, in someway involved with the Lodge’s planning and/or construction? I’ve compiled a good deal of information on Haynes’ commercial and political activities in Utah and would appreciate the opportunity to compare notes. He was something of shaker-and-mover down here during the 1880s and ‘90s, but left for to Oregon about 1897 for reasons of health. From the little I have been able to learn about his life in Oregon, he seems to have take an active part in the life of his new community.

#5 Sarah

Who was the original craftsman of the furniture in the Oly club Centraila? Or where was it purchased from. WOrking on a piece of fiction involving this bar and I need to know, but have been unable to unearth this info. HELP

#6 Doug

Hi Tim, have you found any interesting stories related to the Tacoma Elks bulding?

#7 Allen

Hi Tim, I love the history. Any gatherings going on for former Kennedyites? like me. I attended Kennedy for 5 years in the 60s. Would love to reconnect. Allen, "drewjep@yahoo.com"

#8 christine armstrong

We have the perfect place to open a hotel in Ofallon Missouri. The Barat Academy has beed vacant for two years. Home of the Eagles football, soccer, Baseball and track. The building looks like something from Harry Potter. Backs up to woods and Streams. The grounds are amazing. Please consider Barat Academy in Ofallon Missouri. We Love the Kennedy School and eventhough are relatives live across from Kennedy, we stay at the school.

#9 d flint

I believe the Thompson Brewery was built by my Great Grandfather. Franklin Thompson. Am coming out to Oregon in Sept. and need to visit. Passed it by, 6 yrs. ago, when there, not knowing it was 'ours'. Would love some history on it, etc. & I'll be sure to stop by for lunch.

#10 Nancy Brown

Jenny Joyce's "Gearhart Halloween" hangs in the Sand Trap in Gearhart. I am curious as to what local historical data was gathered about the Headless Horseman. Information about the painting says the rider is unknown because no one has come forward to "fess up." Is being "unknown" a mystery you would like to continue, or would you like me to confess what I did 50 years ago?

#11 John

Had a nice tour of the Crystal Ballroom by Nicole and told her that I though the photo of Lola Baldwin at the brewery looked a lot like Peter Sellers in the movie Dr. Strangelove.
Do a google images search on this. The resemblance is strong.

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