903 Van Buren Street

E.E. HOWELL HOUSE -- Statement of Significance: Eury E. Howell bought this property in 1891 and lived in the house from the time of its construction in 1895. Howell was born in Arkansas in 1861, and his wife Fannie was born in Oregon in 1872. The Howell's had two children by 1900, when he was a driver for the Oregon City Woolen Mills. Although it is not confirmed, it is believed that E.E. Howell was one of the children of pioneer Squire Davis Howell, an early Oregon pioneer and physician. Other children of Squire and Martha Howell include Edward McLinn Howell of Oregon City, Mary A. Howell of Oregon City, and Chambers T. Howell of Oregon City and later Gladstone. The house remained in the Howell family until 1913. Following this sale, the house changed hands many times until 1936, when George and Bertha Boettcher bought the property. The Boettcher's lived in the house during their term of ownership. George worked for the Hawley Pulp and Paper Company, but by 1958 Bertha was a widow. Bertha worked for the Portland Woolen Mills, and later married Aaron Winegar, a welder for Crown Zellerbach. Bertha and Aaron Winegar owned and occupied the house through the remainder of the historic period and into the mid-1980s.

This large house sits under a complex gable roof that features enclosed eaves and decorative imbrication in the gable ends. A frieze separates this shinglework from the asbestos ceramic shingles that cover the first floor level of the house. A porch is set on the southeast corner of the house, and has been enclosed by corrugated fiberglass panels. Just north of the porch, the first floor is shaped into an octagonal bay under the gable end, with the gable eaves cantilevered out over the floor below. The windows in the house are typically 1/1 double-hung wood sash with narrow decorative trim at the first floor level and wide plain surrounds at the gable end windows. A c. 1950 garage has been added to this property just to the north of the house.

This property is a locally designated historic site located within the McLoughlin Conservation District. Contact ocplanning@orcity.org for more information.

Historic Inventory Form 

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