Benjamin Stark, Portland Founder & U.S. Senator - c. 1861


Benjamin Stark, Portland Founder & U.S. Senator

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Born in Louisiana and raised in Connecticut, Stark sailed to Oregon in 1845, where he soon purchased Asa Lovejoy's share of the land that eventually became downtown Portland, for $390. During the gold rush he spent time in San Francisco as a merchant, but returned to Oregon in 1850 to set up shop in Portland. After settling a property dispute, he ended up owning the land bounded by the Willamette River, Stark Street, and Ankeny Street.

Stark became quite wealthy by selling parcels of this property. He was later appointed to fill out the U. S. Senate term of Edward D. Baker, and served from 1861 to 1862, when this photo was likely taken. After about 1870 he returned to Connecticut, where he lived to the age of 78, dying in 1898.

-- This photo is restored and printed by Old Oregon.

Additional Information

Item Number AA0303
Photographer Unknown
Location Portland, Multnomah County, Washington, D.C.
Subject Portraits
Decade 1860s
Print Maker Old Oregon
Original Type CDV
Size of Original 2.2 x 2.8 inches
Photographer's Number No