702 Main Street - Bank of Commerce

This is a sizable, three-story building on the northeast corner of Main and 7th Streets. The building faces west. The light colored brick structure has a distinct cornice with a wide frieze below on which "Bank of Commerce" appears on both the front (west) and south elevations. A belt course and band separate the frieze from the tops of the third floor windows. Windows are paired, 1:1 double hung wood sash on the second and third floors, each pair separated by brick pilasters topped with simple capitals. The portion of the pilasters that were located on the ground floor have either been obscured by the recent siding addition on the ground floor or were removed, except for three pilasters at the east end of the south elevation. Two large columns with Ionic capitals (removed) flanked the recessed entrance on the main facade. The main entrance and first floor windows have been "modernized" with fixed pane metal sash windows and contemporary doors. There has also been some minor modifications to the south side entrance. Statement of Significance: The Bank of Commerce was incorporated in 1915 with several prominent residents of Oregon City as stockholders and on the board of directors. Thomas F. Ryan, who was vice-president of the bank when it was incorporated, was a local lawyer who served a city recorder, mayor, judge, deputy state treasurer, and state senator. Hugh and Guy Mount, both of whom served as vice-president of the bank during its 15-year life, were brothers and physicians who owned and operated the Oregon City Hospital. The bank was originally located in the Weinhard Building (in the 1916 directory). Construction on the building began in 1921 and was completed in 1922. The building was designed by A.E. Doyle, an architect from Portland whose buildings are often cited among the most notable buildings in Portland. Among these are the Portland Central Public Library, the U.S. National Bank, the Benson Hotel, the Meier & Frank Department Store, and the Pittock Block. The principal contractors were Murry and Frieberg of Portland. Oliver E. Lutz, also of Portand, installed the interior marble. The bank was liquated in 1931 at which time it was purchased by the Bank of Oregon City, which was soon after bought by U.S. National Bank (listed at this address in the 1947 and 1953 directories). It has more recently been used as office space for county offices. Although the building has been somewhat altered (most of the changes appear to be reversible), it still retains a high degree of historic integrity and would, therefore, be considered eligible as a contributing resource in a historic district.