Heritage Property Management

About the Brown

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Brown Apartments 1915

North side has great views of the Fremont Bridge.
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East side apartments have great views of the city.
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14th and Yamhill view
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Here is an example of our large kitchens
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Our colorful lobby
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Bathrooms have wall-mounted toilets and C.F. tubs
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One of our many quiet wood-stained hallways
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About the Brown

The Brown Apartments, designed by the firm of Claussen and Claussen, were constructed in 1915.  They are an excellent example of the American Renaissance style within the body of the firm’s work.  The Brown Apartments are in excellent condition, both on the exterior and interior.  The exterior facades are of dark reddish brown brick, contrasted by the light cream color cast stone and wooden decorative elements.  The interior of the building is elegantly detailed with marble wainscoting, title floors, and classical plaster motifs.  The original light fixtures, Murphy beds, and built-in dressers are all intact within the individual apartments.

Setting:

The Brown Apartments are located at 807 Southwest Fourteenth Avenue, in the Southwest Historic Neighborhoods of Downtown Portland.  The building is on the Northeast corner of Southwest fourteenth and Yamhill Street. 

Plan:
The Brown Apartments are four stories high with a daylight basement, and has a total of 66 living units. Its footprint is U-shaped, the outside dimensions measuring 95’ x 95’. The building is a highly visible landmark in the neighborhood. The front entrance is recessed, with a central courtyard that faces the front of the building. The roof is flat and therefore is not visible from the street. External walls of the apartment building are constructed of brick, while the interior walls are wood frame, lathe and plaster.
 Exterior:

The Brown Apartments represent a fine example of the American Renaissance style, and are in excellent condition. The two facades that face the street (north and east) and the central courtyard of the apartment are abundant with architectural detail. The south and west facades that are directed to the interior of the block are fashioned with more simplicity.

 

The primary facades present a strong contrasting pattern between the dark reddish brown brick and the light cream color of other decorative and structural elements, such as the concrete basement, window frames, and the oriel windows with classical detail. The oriel windows are arranged in vertical stacks on the second, third, and fourth floors. Two wooden belt courses and a cornice provide strong, light colored horizontal lines on the north and east façades.

 Interior:

The plan of the interior of the Brown Apartments is as originally constructed. Of the 66 apartment units, sixteen are 1-bedroom units and fifty are studios. All floors including the basement have three 1-bedroom apartments except the first floor, which has four of the 1-bedroom units. The original features of the lobby, halls and apartments are in excellent condition.

 Christina Addison Brown – Original Owner/Builder:

Mrs. Christina Brown was the owner/builder of the Brown Apartments. She contracted with the firm of Green and Green to construct the apartment building during 1914 and 1915 (City of Portland building permit files).

 

Mrs. Brown was born February 12, 1871 in Weaverville, California. She moved with her family to a ranch near Pendleton, Oregon when she was 8 years old. Nothing has been discovered of her marriage, other than that she had a daughter named Dorothy (Evening Astorian, Sept. 10, 1951).

 

Mrs. Brown was listed as living in Portland at 201 14th Avenue in 1910, five years before completion of the Brown Apartments, which were built at 181 14th Ave. She apparently built the apartments near, or on the same parcel, where she was living.

 

Following their completion, Mrs. Brown moved into the Brown Apartments and lived there until her retirement in 1944. During her career she also owned and operated the May Apartments, which are located at the corner of S.W. 14th Avenue and Taylor Street. Upon retirement, Mrs. Brown moved to seaside, Oregon, to the home of her daughter, Mrs. Dorothy Mulholland. Mrs. Christina Brown died September 8, 1951 at the age of 80 years.