Month: January 2009

Olympus Gym moves from MLK

Olympus Gym, owned by Scientologist and bodybuilder Kristi Sanders, just moved from 4545 NE MLK to 61st & Fremont, freeing up this building:

This garage was built in 1930 and is owned by The Kopkie family. The lot also holds a small building which housed only Kopkie Auto Sales until recently, but now also is the site for Portland Signs & Banners:

The graphic on the store sign here looks like it crawled out of the 1980’s.

The empty blocks from Fremont to Fargo, east side of MLK

These two photos show the empty lots on the east side of MLK. The blocks run from Fremont to Ivy, Ivy to Cook, and Cook to Fargo Streets.  Recently, a fence that enclosed half of the block between Ivy and Cook (providing nearby residents with a nifty, convenient dog park of their own) came down. The other side of that block once housed the Grant Warehouse; in the seventies this block held a tire store (Mor-Mile Tires).

The first photo looks south, with the (former) Chester Dorsey Car Wash in the background; the second is facing north across the empty lots, with the Kings Crossing/Fremont Building in the background, on the other side of Fremont Street. In the center of the photo are signs for mattress sales, although there are no mattresses there at the moment (obviously).

Mattress shop opens on MLK

The building at 4069 NE MLK that last housed a used goods store, and before that was an aquarium store (and has long had a Cost Cutters sign on its side), now hosts a mattress store:

This ten thousand square foot warehouse, built in 1920, also holds The Miracles Club. It was purchased by Jack Gorman in 2007 for just over a million dollars.

King Asks 2nd Emancipation Proclamation

A believer in non-violent resistance to racial segregation Wednesday night urged President Kennedy to issue a second Emancipation Proclamation.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Baptist minister who led the successful Negro bus boycott in Montgomery, Ala., in 1955, told an estimated 3,500 persons at the Public Auditorium that “segregation is nothing but slavery covered up with nothing but the niceties of complexities.”

“The hour has come for the President to issue an order bringing an end to all discrimination and basing it on the 14th Amendment to the Constitution,” said Dr. King. “Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was an executive order.”

The 32-year-old minister said there is a need for positive faith in the future if the problem of racial discrimination is to be solved.

“There must be people in this nation with a sort of divine content… In the days of guided missiles, it is no longer a choice between non-violence or violence, it is a choice between non-violence and non-existence.”

Montgomery Recalled

Dr. King noted that “after 381 days of suffering and sacrifice… buses are now integrated” in Montgomery and Negroes of that city know it is “more honorable to walk in dignity than ride in humiliation.”

He said American [sic] today stands on “the border of the promised land of integration,” but listed these challenges her people must face in the “emerging new order.”

1 – Americans must rise above the narrow confines of their individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.

“The world in which we live is a geographic one,” said Dr. King. “The real challenge is to make it a spiritual one. We must learn to live together as brothers or perish as fools.”

2 – American [sic] must get rid of the notion once and for all that there are superior and inferior races.

“If there are lagging standards in the Negro community, they lag because of racial segregation,” he maintained. “It is a torturous argument to use the tragic results of racial segregation as a reason for the continued use of it.”

3 – Americans must continue to move on the path of protests.

“We’ve got to get rid of the myth of time,” said Dr. King. “We must help time and remember that time is always ripe to do right.”

4 – Americans must get rid of the myth of  “educational determinism.”

“There is a need for both education and legislation,” said Dr. King. “It may be true that morality can’t be legislated, but behavior can be regulated. Legislation can’t make man love me, but it can stop him from lynching me.”

Dr. King advised America’s Negroes to “make full use of the freedoms you possess… never use oppression as an excuse for mediocrity.”

“The greatest challenge to the Negro is to be ready to use the new doors as they open,” he said. “Do a good job and do it well. Do it so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn couldn’t do it better.”

Protest Needed

“The job must not be a good Negro job. If you’re are [sic] just going to be a good Negro teacher… you have already flunked your entrance examination to the University of Integration.”

Dr. King said non-violent means of protesting the continuance of racial segregation are needed “to implement decisions already on the books.”

Dr. King was principal speaker at the Urban League of Portland’s Equal Opportunity Day program. Gov. Mark O. Hatfield and Mayor Terry D. Schrunk brought greetings. Entertainment was provided by the Jefferson High School Coie under the direction of Marie C. Lots.

Published in the Oregonian, November 9, 1961.

Dr. Martin Luther King: “Live as One or Perish as Fools”

Live As One or Perish as Fools, Warning Given by Dr. King Here

by Dan Gashler

Journal Staff Writer

A near-balanced “integrated” group that filled the main floor and first balcony of The Auditorium Wednesday night heard a Negro Baptist minister offer encouragement for equal opportunities.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., co-pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, and prominent in the U.S. integration movement, was guest speaker at the Urban League of Portland’s “Equal Opportunity Day Program.”

Describing challenges of “the new day,” Dr. King outlined some of the problems facing all persons of the world to bring about the death of segregation.

“Rise above the confines of individual concerns and develop a world perspective,” he urged.

“We must live together as brothers or perish as fools. No individual nation can live alone.”

The minister commented, “We must get rid of the notion that there are superior and inferior races.”

Addressing a few remarks mainly to the Negroes in the audience, he said, “Set out not only to do a good Negro job, but be best at whatever you do – if you are a street-sweeper, sweep streets like Raphael painted pictures or Michelangelo chiseled marble.”

Dr. King urged everyone to continue to move on the path of creative protest to make integration a reality. “Get rid of the myth that time will solve all problems,” he said.

Speaking as if delivering a sermon, he defended the non-violent resistance being utilized in many Southern cities.

“In less than a year 15o cities in the South have integrated at lunch counters –  due to non-violent opposition.”

“And the Freedom Riders actions at bus and rail terminals have accomplished something that will make America a better nation,” he declared.

Pointing to the students who have been participating in the “Freedom Rider” program, Dr. King said, “We as they must have faith in the future, and our difficulties can be resolved.”

Quoting a student theme song, “We shall overcome. Deep in my heart, I believe we shall overcome,” Dr. King said this can be a good rule to follow for everyone.

Greetings to the Urban League guest were offered by Mayor Terry D. Schrunk and Gov. Mark O. Hatfield. Patriotic music was provided by an “integrated” choir from Jefferson High School.


Published in the Oregon Journal, November 9, 1961.

TOWN TOPICS: Huss Sets Reply to Rev. King’s Talk

by Peter Thompson

Journal Staff Writer

Walter Huss will stand on The Auditorium stage on Tuesday, Nov. 14, and describe Dr. Martin Luther King as “communist approved” and “the leading spokesman of the left wing.”

In a broadside aimed at the Negro civil rights leader, Huss, director of the Portland Freedom Center, has published an 8-page pamphlet advertising the event as an “exposé” titled “What the Reds Mean by Civil Rights.”

The meeting will be Huss’ reply to an address to be given a few days earlier, also in The Auditorium, by Dr. King.

Huss will be accompanied on stage by Arthur Bonhomme, described as President of the Haitian Bible Society and “an international Negro leader.”

Huss, in the pamphlet, calls himself “a distinguished leader of the vital anti-communist movement in America.”

The pamphlet tells how Dr. King has been repeatedly photographed with prominent communists, and reveals the fact that he once signed a statement calling for suspension of nuclear weapons tests.

Also advertised in the publication is “The Sixth Freedom Center School of Americanism and Anti-Communism” to be held at the Freedom Center on SE Taylor Street.

Huss will be the featured speaker at the Tuesday lunch meeting of the Kiwanis Club in the Multnomah Hotel.

The Kiwanis bulletin calls the Freedom Center “a patriotic anti-communist organization.”

A discordant note may be struck when Huss is introduced by the chairman of the day. His name is O.C. “Red” Dunning.

Published in the Oregon Journal, November 6, 1961. Walter Huss and his wife Rosalie later became prominent leaders in the fight to stop the City of Portland from renaming Union Avenue after Dr. King.