Property Watch: A Stick-Eastlake Victorian in Woodlawn
Editor’s Note: Portland Monthly’s “Property Watch” column takes a weekly look at an interesting home in Portland’s real estate market (with periodic ventures to the burbs and points beyond, for good measure). This week: a Stick-Eastlake Victorian in Woodlawn with plenty of wood details. Got a home you think would work for this column? Get in touch at [email protected].
The Woodlawn neighborhood got its start not as a rural farming village in the 1860s, miles away from "the city." In 1888, the railroad company plopped a depot at the intersection of Durham Avenue and Dekum Street, spurring a wave of commercial and housing development—including this sweet Victorian house, built in 1893.
Per the city’s Historic Resource Inventory, this is a Stick Style Victorian, which was quite popular for the time. Equally widespread was the Eastlake movement, an approach to furniture and architecture named for a British architect and writer who wrote a book called Hints on Household Taste in Furniture, Upholstery, and Other Details, encouraging people to buy decorative goods made by hand.
This translated a plethora of intricate wood detailing in homes, facilitated by woodworking tools like the jigsaw and lathe. According to our local Preservation Artisans Guild, “Eastlake detailing was occasionally applied to small, simple cottages to make them appear grander.”
At 2,331 square feet, this sweet Woodlawn listing is exemplary of all this, awash as it is with such wood details inside and out: ornate curvilinear brackets over one corner of the bay window, the running trim and spindle columns at the rounded entry porch, fishscale shingles, a spindlework sunburst tucked under the roof.
There’s even more wonderful minutiae to discover inside, along with stained-glass windows galore. The carvings in the front door will have you stopping in appreciation for a moment, enhanced by the warm light cast by the door's amber glass and the colorful transom above. That carved wood and colored glass continues in both the living and dining rooms, accented by 10-foot ceilings, oak floors, and picture rail molding still adorned with its original engraved brass picture-hanging hooks.
The current owners have been restoring the home, so there are several new updates to appreciate alongside these original features. A coat closet in the foyer has been outfitted with fun wallpaper and modern lighting picks. The kitchen was nicely redone before, so it has plenty of great storage, quartz counters, contemporary appliances, and a handy central work table.
The primary en-suite is a recently finished room, complete with vaulted ceilings and a luxe bathroom. The latter is wreathed in marble, and sports a clawfoot soaking tub painted pink and a delightful walk-in shower under a skylight.
Any new owner will have to pick up where these ones have left off, but for someone that loves such storied detail and a piece of neighborhood history—this is the oldest house on this block of Liberty Street—this is a home to relish.
Listing Fast Facts:
Address: 2009 NE Liberty St, Portland, OR 97211
Size: 2,331 square feet, 3 bed/1.5 bath
List Date: 11/3/2022
Listing Agents: Tracy Wiens and Kristin Fitzgerald, Old PDX Homes @ John L. Scott NE Portland
Melissa Dalton is a freelance writer who has focused on Pacific Northwest design and lifestyle since 2008. She is based in Portland, Oregon. Contact Dalton here.