Diamond in the Rough

By Ken Avery

Moving to Portland, Oregon in 2007 was the beginning of a new life rich with opportunities for discovery and growth. 

St. Johns suspension bridge

Peninsula Park, Portland’s original rose garden

On east side of the river in Portland lies a vast network of very pedestrian friendly, tree lined residential streets. Throughout this area there are amazing secrets to be found. Beautiful hidden parks or small commercial districts set within neighborhoods serve as gathering places for the locals. 

Local flora

On one late summer afternoon, just a block away from Portland’s beautiful historic rose garden, Peninsula Park, my wife and I discovered our own secret treasure; a Diamond in the Rough.  

Peninsula Park, historic photo

Our discovery was hidden in tall dry weeds and unpruned bushes and perched behind a rickety wooden fence - vacant and abandoned. The discovery happened upon ended up being the house of our dreams. Staring at the front of the house, our hearts skipped a beat as we felt like archaeologists who happened upon a well-preserved relic from the past. 

A diamond in the rough

From a distance the house did appear run-down with flaking paint and moss hanging off it edges, but the closer we got the more enamored we became with its beautiful strength and detail. Built it 1907, the house originally sat alone in a field with only gas lights inside and probably a horse and buggy parked in the front yard. 

After purchasing the home, my wife and I worked for many years tirelessly restoring this glorious house back to its original beauty. 


While a tedious job, the house's character had fascinated and captivated us into a true labor of love.


The finished product!