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Barbecue sandwiches a wonder at county fair

by: Carole Archer, Sharon Nesbit

1916 - The Sun Dial Ranch, which extended from Troutdale to Fairview 90 years ago, covered 2,100 aces and was regarded as the largest farm in Multnomah County. Operations included a huge diary herd. The ranch raised all of its own feed and operated a feed mill. It also maintained a herd of horses for the farm work, and 553 head of pigs.

1926 - The wonder of the Multnomah County fair 80 years ago was the introduction of 'barbecue sandwiches.'

'A revolving spindle carries the meat before a hot fire and gives it a different flavor from any other method of cooking,' The Outlook reported. Granges were a big part of the fair and nine local granges, Lents, Rockwood, Gresham, Columbia, Multnomah, Russellville, Pleasant Valley, Fairview and Evening Star, had exhibits there.

1936 - Remodeling of an old house on Third Avenue and Hood Street in Gresham 70 years ago uncovered local papers lining the walls. One was a copy of the Gresham Gazette, predecessor to The Outlook, published in the summer of 1904 at about the time Gresham was incorporated. The other was an Aug. 10 edition of the Oregon Journal.

1946 - Peace was only a year old 60 years ago, as local residents marked the anniversary of the Japanese surrender. In the year since the war ended, 243 men and women veterans had found work in Gresham, but they couldn't find homes. Rumor had it that precious kegs of nails - still in severe shortage in the postwar building boom - were stored in a war assets administration warehouse at Troutdale. An Outlook reporter went to the warehouse to see if see if it was true and found nary a nail. Regardless, the government planned to put the contents of the warehouse on sale as war surplus.

1956 - Mrs. Carrie Townsend, the only living member of the first Gresham county fair board, celebrated her 92nd birthday 50 years ago. The Multnomah County Fair was just concluding and word was that Judith Hawley of Orient took top honors in junior livestock event.

1966 - A twin engine Cessna headed for the Troutdale airport crashed 40 years ago in a field near the Multnomah Kennel Club. Killed were the president of Portland's Fields Chevrolet Co., Philip L. Fields, 53, his 19-year-old son, Terence, and a business associate, John Muntzel of Beaverton.

1976 - Gresham's Starving Artists had their seventh annual show and sale 30 years ago. Contributors were Dian Rondeau Rose, Dorothy Wood, Joan Lamirande, Naomi Lee, Esther Brown, Margaret Lund, Dyna Williamson, Tina Scarborough, John and Leona VanKirk and Erma Wedin.

1986 - Word came 20 years ago that Gresham's J.C. Penney's store would go out of business in January. J.C. Penney opened in Gresham on March 13, 1930, on Main Avenue near Powell Boulevard. In the mid-1940s it moved to Roberts Avenue.

1996 - Caffeine on Crown Point was new at Vista House 10 years ago when Friends of Vista House installed a coffee stand. It is still there. The original coffee stand would help pay restoration costs of the aging visitor center, then estimated at $2 million. The final bill was closer to $4 million.

2005 - At this time last year crews began dismantling the famous old Zim's Shopping Center at 12-Mile Corner, taking down the revolving sign that had made the corner a landmark for more than 50 years.

Researched and compiled from The Outlook files.