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2336 Gales Way

Emma & Lewis Rodlun House c. 1888 

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This two story Queen Anne home features many of the classic elements of that style of architecture. It is described as having: a steeply pitched cross gable roof, exposed exterior studs and it is clad in textured wall surfaces, mixing horizontal boards with fish scale shingles and board and batten siding. The asymmetrical primary elevation features a large, shallow bay window and an encircling porch with tapered posts and spindles over a lattice like porch base.

The home sits on a part of the original land claim of Elkanah Walker that he established in 1849. Stephen Blank bought a large portion of that land from Walker in 1868 and then resold portions of it off over time. This part was purchased by Franklin Doughty in 1877. Listed in the 1880 census as a home builder, Doughty was likely the property owner when this home was built in c.1888. Changing hands multiple times early on, no records were found attributing any early owner to actually living here. By 1898 it had been purchased by Katherine Wiley wife of a well-known saloon keeper who lived in Hillsboro. Kate used it as a rental for several years. Three short term owners followed until 1919, when the home was occupied by Emma and Lewis Rodlun, possibly first as renters, until when in 1934, they bought the home.

Lewis Rodlun was born in 1876 in Minnesota and by 1900 he and most of his immediate family are living in the Boring, Damascus, and Gresham area east of Portland. The Rodlun name becomes well known in the logging industry. Their name is often shown in land deals as they become busy setting up sawmills, providing lumber for the growing area of Portland, then selling off the cleared land for farms, etc.

Emma Chitwood was raised in Tillamook County and then Damascus where her family was living when she met Lewis who was 23 years her senior. They married in 1912 and records show that they lived first in the Gresham area until when in August of 1919 they are found in the local directory living on Gales Way in Forest Grove.

The Forest Grove Census’ for 1920 through 1950 show them living here. Lewis was working as a sawmill engineer and Emma was listed as a florist. Over time she opened her own floral business “Rodlun Flowers” and operated it out of this home.

FHFG members Carol Drew and Joyce Sauber both have memories of buying corsages, and bouquets of flowers at the Rodlun Flower Shop operated by Emma. They describe her yard as being full of flowers and shrubs of all kinds. Customers would park at the side of the house and come to the back door where they would be greeted by Emma who was described as a very nice, talented and friendly lady. She would have flowers in buckets ready to sell. Many folks sought her out for flowers to take to the local cemeteries.

By 1950 Lewis had retired from logging and was listed in the census as a florist along with Emma. He died in 1953 at the age of 74 and Emma carried on alone. She sold the home in 1975 after living here for 56 years. Emma died in 1981 at the age of 93 and is buried along with Lewis in Forest View Cemetery.

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