Historic Preservation Exhibit - For the Visually Impaired
The City Vision
Early Plans from the Longview Room
Presented by the Longview Historic Preservation Commission and the Longview Public library.
Funding provided by the National Park Service and the Washington Department of Archeology and Historic Preservation.
1923 Plat of Longview: Showing the Valley's 1922 Land Ownership
Reproduction of a blue-line diazo print titled "Plat of Longview Washington Showing Business District and Portion of Residential and manufacturing Districts, April 20 1923". It depicts the planned street layout of the City of Longview for the area between Ocean Beach Highway (North), the Cowlitz River (East), the log yards on the Columbia River (South), and Ditch Number 2 and the Olympic Addition (West). Overlaid on the map are hand drawn survey markers and plats in red. Each plat is marked with a name indicating ownership.
Also depicted are the planned and current routing of Third Avenue and three highlighted plats marked "Paul Plebuch".
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This map shows the individual tracts of land and their owners before the arrival of the Long-Bell Lumber Company (in red) overlaid on a 1923 map of the planned City of Longview (in blue).
In late January, 1922, Wesley Vandercook assembled four men from Kelso (H. E McKenney, T. Fisk, F. Barnes, C. Kletch) with the goal of purchasing the entire valley for the Long-Bell Lumber Company. Over the next three days, they persuaded every landowner they could to sell their land and become part of R. A. Long's visionary new city.
In the end, Vandercook convinced 47 of the 49 owners to sell their claims to the land that made up the heart of the valley, but it did not come cheap. The average cost per acre was $150, which would be more than $2600 per acre in 2022.
Many of the landowners would stay in Longview and are listed in the first city census taken in December, 1923.
Paul Plebuch owned three tracts on the Cowlitz River and would not sell his land to Long-Bell Lumber Co. One of these tracts lay in the planned path of Third Avenue and the city builders were forced to curve the street around Plebuch's property. The jog in the road can still be seen on maps today.
Reproduction of an artist's rendition of the Planned City of Longview in grayscale watercolor titled "Plan for Longview Washington". It depicts an imagined completed City of Longview as well as the cities of Kelso and Rainier. Inset in the upper right is a map locating the City of Longview in relation to the major cities of Washington and Oregon in 1923. The painting is undated.
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Plan for Longview Washington
Hare and Hare - City Planners
Kansas City - Missouri
George E Kessler - City Planning Consultant
B L Lambuth - Realtor
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This map indicates nothing more than a proposed general plan of development of lands thereon designated. Said plan is subject to modification in whole or part without notice subject to the provisions of contract expressly made relating thereto.
[Panel 3 and 4]
Two facing panels depicting portions of Lake Sacajawea. The left panel displays a reproduction of a linen plan of the Lake and the roads and bridges in the immediate vicinity titled "Plan for Parkway Along Lake Sacajawea". The northernmost section of the Lake between Louisiana Street and Ocean Beach Highway is highlighted in green.
The right panel contains reproductions of two different plans for the northernmost section of the Lake. The top right drawing is a pencil on onion skin plan with damaged margins. Although the title box is partially damaged, the remaining text and contextual information identify it as the Planting Plan for Section A dated September 28, 1926. It contains the locations of new and existing trees and bushes as well as the walking paths. The location of each plant is drawn and labeled or numbered. The bottom right drawing is an ink on linen plan titled "Grading Plan Lake Sacajawea Section A". It shows the grading of Section A through the use of contour lines. The original object is double sided and the backside image was intended to be viewed from the front as an underlay, depicting the pre-graded contours.
The architectural firm Hare and Hare designed lake Sacajawea in five sections. Construction of Section A (highlighted in green) began in 1926 as horse-drawn graders sculpted the shore according to the Grading Plan (facing panel-bottom). The new landscape was populated with trees and shrubs as laid out in the Planting Plan (facing panel-top).
Architecture at the Library: What is Colonial Revival?
This panels depicts an undated color-inverted blueprint of the front of the Longview Public Library titled "Front-Elevation" and numbered sheet 6 (of 11). The title block is partially illegible due to light damage. An insert image at the top right shows a cross section of the library cupola from a different blueprint. Below the front-elevation blueprint is descriptive text. To the right of the text is an insert from a different blueprint detailing the main library entrance. Specific architectural details are highlighted in color and called out in surrounding text.
Colonial Revival is an architectural style that draws elements from the early English and Dutch colonial settlements in America. It is classified as an Eclectic Style due to the way architectural elements from different styles and eras were freely combined, often resulting in a structure with only a passing resemblance to the original models for which it is named. The free-mixing of styles created many different Colonial Revival subtypes with significant variations in footprint and roof-shape.
Colonial Revival architecture first appeared in America during the 1880s due to interest in American Colonial heritage driven by the country's centennial in 1876. The style grew in popularity through the 1930s and 1940s before being supplanted by the Mid-century Modern movement of the early 1950s.
Semicircular Fanlight: Fanlights are the half-moon windows found above a doorway or another window. They can be found in both semicircular and semielliptical forms.
Pilaster: A pilaster is a decorative flat-faced column that projects from a wall. They are often placed beside doorways or window openings.
Dentillation and Cornice: Dentil are repeating ornamental projections that resemble teeth. A cornice (Italian for "ledge") is a decorative overhang at the top of an architectural element such as a wall or window.
Rectangular Transom Light: Transoms are the horizontal members above a door or within a window. Light is the architectural term for a window or pane f glass in a divided window.
Console (Scroll Corbel): A console is a scroll-shaped decorative bracket with minimal projection relative to overall height.
Broken Pediment with Urn-Shaped Finial: A pediment is the space between intersecting rooflines and an opening such as a door or a window. They are often rectangular and sit upon columns. A finial is a decorative object placed at the peak or apex of another structure.
Keystone in Semi-circular arch lintel: The keystone is the topmost stone in an arch. A lintel is the structural support above an opening.
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The Longview Public Library's combination of a broken pediment with finial, horizontal transom light, and semi-circular fanlight all above a single opening is a prime example of the eclectic combination of mismatched features characteristic of Revivalist architecture.
Planning For Change… …Changing The Plan
This panel contains a reproduced ink on linen plan titled "Map Showing Zones of Use" dated February 8, 2023. It depicts the proposed zoning of the City of Longview for the area between Ocean Beach Highway (North), the Cowlitz River (East), the Long-Bell Mill (South), and Lake Sacajawea (West). Each zoning type is marked with a different hatch pattern and a legend is located in the lower left corner of the drawing.
Overlaid on the map are three colored areas. The triangular area between Washington Way, Fifteenth Avenue, and Ocean Beach Highway is highlighted in red. The irregular area between Ocean Beach Highway, Olympia Way, Mississippi Street, and Fifteenth Avenue is highlighted in blue. The rectangular area between Eleventh Avenue and Seventh Avenue is highlighted in yellow.
The Architects of Longview knew they had an opportunity to build a new city that would grow in an orderly and planned fashion, eschewing the chaotic expansion of cities like London and San Francisco. They also knew that if their paper city was to survive in the real world, they would need a way to enforce their master plan. But because Longview did not have a city government, they could not write the zoning into law. As a stop-gap, the Long-Bell Company wrote land-use restrictions into the deed of every plat sold, binding every new owner to follow the master plan.
By mid-century, a comprehensive zoning ordinance replaced the deed-based restrictions and finally transferred the responsibility of zoning enforcement to the City itself.
The 1923 zoning map to the left shows how each block of the city was assigned to a specific usage district:
The new mills would be located at the intersection of the Cowlitz and Columbia Rivers. Bordering the mill to the north would be a vast industrial park intended for manufacturing and heavy industry. Businesses that would support the manufacturers were allocated space alongside the wholesalers that would keep the retail shelves stocked in the central shopping district. In the Westside neighborhoods, apartments would line the main thoroughfares with single-family homes occupying the choicest lots near the lake. The future additions were exclusively residential and lots would be platted and sold as the city grew.
Despite the planners' best efforts, there were still developments that they did not, or could not, foresee.
Through the 1950s and 1960s, much of the city center remained undeveloped and in 1964, the Triangle Mall (highlighted in red) and its shiny new parking lot was built on vacant lots originally zoned for apartments. After all, car ownership had fueled the post-war suburb boom across America and Longview was no exception.
In 1956, increases in population led to the construction of Mark Morris High School, also on undeveloped residential lots (in blue).
The land east of the civic center was originally zoned for assorted business use, but a lack of business development and the ever- present need for housing led to the development of the Broadway Neighborhood (in yellow).
More recently, The City revised local building codes to allow for the construction of more Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) to address the need for affordable housing.
Does zoning determine how we live? Or does how we live determine zoning?
Longview Historic Preservation Commission
Celebrating 100 Years of Longview
Many locations around the city are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The National Register of Historic Places is administered by The National Park Service and listing in the National Register is an honorary designation that places no obligation or restrictions on the property owner.
Many of the locations listed in the National Register are also listed in the Local Register of Historic Places. The Local Register is maintained by the City of Longview and carries legal obligations and restrictions in exchange for property tax advantages.
The Longview Historic Preservation Commission strongly encourages homeowners to list their properties in one or both of the Registries. Registry listing is an important step in preventing the loss of important local heritage.
Information about the Local and National Registers as well as a complete list of Registry listed places can be found on the city website: https://www.mylongview.com/186/Registers-of-Historic-Places
City of Longview, and Artifacts Consulting, Inc., Lake Sacajawea Park Preservation Plan § (2010). https://www.mylongview.com/DocumentCenter/View/493/Identification-PDF.
McAlester, Virginia, and Lee McAlester. A Field Guide to American Houses. 8th ed. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1984.
McClelland, John M. R.A. Long's Planned City: The Story of Longview. Bicentennial Edition. Longview, WA: Longview Publishing Co., 1976.
Digitization of these plans has been financed in part with Federal funds from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior administered by the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation (DAHP) and the City of Longview. However, the contents and opinions do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of the Interior, DAHP, nor does the mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Department of the Interior or DAHP.
These panels have been financed in part with Federal funds from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior administered by the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation (DAHP) and the City of Longview. However, the contents and opinions do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of the Interior, DAHP, nor does the mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Department of the Interior or DAHP.
This program received Federal funds from the National Park Service. Regulations of the U.S. Department of Interior strictly prohibit unlawful discrimination in departmental Federally Assisted Programs on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, or handicap. Any person who believes he or she has been discriminated against in any program, activity, or facility operated by a recipient of Federal assistance should write to:
Director, Equal Opportunity Program, U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1849 C Street, NW Washington, D.C. 20240.