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Friday, May 20, 2011

Requesting Your Stories about the Darigold Building by the Old Astoria Train Station

Darigold Building, Astoria, Oregon ~ Photo Copyright Ron Walker

With all the celebration and events going on for the Astoria Bicentennial (1811 to 2011), you might think I'd focus on that this week, but I'm not. While celebrations are fun, I believe that history is a concern for every day. This old building next to the retired train station on the River Walk is slated for demolition at the end of May. I would love to see some way to restore it, but here is the point of the post:

RON WALKER REQUESTS YOUR STORIES, information, and anecdotes about the historic Darigold Building pictured above. You can help by e-mailing Ron at riverwalker1946@charter.net or phoning him at (503) 440-3506. Ron tells me he is also making a documentary about the building, and collecting interview footage for that purpose. He's interested in any and all stories you have. Please check out the blog comments below for more details. 

Ron says he's learning that the building had a fascinating history and has been used by Astorians in many interesting ways. One bit of info I learned from reading Elleda Wilson's "In One Ear" column in the Daily Astorian is that in the 1920s and 1930s, people could order from the Sears catalog and pick up their purchases in this building next to the train station. Those few words alone bring back memories for many of us whether we lived in Astoria or not (Mom ordering from the Sears catalog and waiting weeks for delivery!). What can you remember about Dairygold? The picture posted above is Ron's, but I took some myself the other day and will post more this week. VERY SOON THIS LANDMARK WILL BE GONE! I hate seeing old buildings that have character and stories disappear into nothing. It would take tons of money to restore it, but this is one of those times I wish I could somehow do it. 

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

11 comments:

cieldequimper said...

Sorry can't help ;-) but I like the sort of eerie and rainy look.

Dave said...

The dock was fantastic used as a stage last year at the Brew Cup. I feel there's an opportunity for reuse of this building either in whole or by using the two sections and putting together enough parts to make one sound structure again. From what I understand it's just going to be green space..good for use a few months of the year..

Ron Walker said...

Thank you Sheryl for the excellent posting you did on the old Darigold building.
it is sad to see it go. i would welcome anyone to call or email me even after the structure is torn down as i will be collecting information and footage for a historical documentary on this building for awhile before i start editing.
one interesting story turned up a few days ago when i interviewed a man (David Thompson) who worked at this building in 1953 unloading new Plymouths from boxcars onto the open platform. he then drove them to Rambo motors , which is now the bowling alley in Astoria, where they were sold. since only two new cars could fit on the floor of the boxcars, one had to be strapped to the ceiling. it is stories like this that help keep the memory of a building alive.

i feel that the best way to preserve a building, if it is going to be removed from existence is to document it in pictures and stories, so that future generations will know something about their heritage.
i will be at the location this sunday from about 6-9 pm if anyone would like to drop by. you'll spot me because i'll probably be taking pictures of the building, or sketching it. bring your stories, your opinions, even your musical instruments, (for a possible musical jam session) to videotape and memorialize this structure before it is gone.
thank you again Sheryl for the work you put in on this subject on your blog, it looks fantastic! Ron Walker

Ron Walker said...

p.s. i didn't know that the loading platform was used last year as a stage for the Brew Cup. thank you Dave for that information.
i have had several people comment on how the east end of the building (the open loading platform) could make an ideal stage . that would tie in well with the future use of the area as a park, and the stage could be used for dance performances,music concerts,poetry readings etc.
but i am afraid the idea of saving even part of the building is not possible, as the decision to demolish has been finalized by the city of Astoria and the contract has been awarded.

if anyone has any photographs of the Brew Cup held at this location last year, or any photos of the building, i would welcome them, as they could be included in this documentary. thanks again Dave for your contribution. every little story will be included in this documentary. Ron Walker

Jacob said...

I don't have any stories, but it sure is a shame this will be torn down. Love this photo, Sheryl...the moody wetness is wonderful!

tapirgal said...

RON WALKER tried to post a follow-up comment, and it wasn't accepted by Blogger. I don't know what issues it's having, but I'll try it here (it came through to me in e-mail, oddly enough). Are any of you other bloggers having trouble with comments?

RON SAID:

p.s. i didn't know that the loading platform was used last year as a stage for the Brew Cup. thank you Dave for that information.

i have had several people comment on how the east end of the building (the open loading platform) could make an ideal stage . that would tie in well with the future use of the area as a park, and the stage could be used for dance performances,music concerts,poetry readings etc.
but i am afraid the idea of saving even part of the building is not possible, as the decision to demolish has been finalized by the city of Astoria and the contract has been awarded.

if anyone has any photographs of the Brew Cup held at this location last year, or any photos of the building, i would welcome them, as they could be included in this documentary. thanks again Dave for your contribution. every little story will be included in this documentary. Ron Walker

Francisca said...

No story from me either, but cool wet shot.

sologake said...

I am sorry that i cant come there to help you but I can pray for you which I im doing Sorry!
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