Portland Academy and Female Seminary

The Portland Academy and Female Seminary was a private school in Portland, Oregon, United States, operated by the Methodist Episcopal Church from 1851 until 1876. Often abbreviated as the Portland Academy, the school was among the few secondary schools in Portland during the years of the Oregon Territory. Later it served briefly as an alternative to Portland High School.

Portland Academy and Female Seminary
A view of the Portland Academy in 1865

United States
Coordinates45°30′55″N 122°40′58″W / 45.515221°N 122.682655°W / 45.515221; -122.682655[1]
TypePrivate, Secondary
Religious affiliation(s)Methodist
EstablishedNovember 17, 1851 (1851-11-17)
TrusteesWilliam S. Ladd, Alexander Abernethy, Gustavus Hines, C.S. Kingsley, William M. King, P.A. Marquam, Clinton Kelley, Harvey K. Hines, P.G. Buchanan, E.C. Baker, J.O. Waterman, Thomas H. Pearne, A.F. Waller, James H. Wilbur, Thomas J. Dryer, Dr. Perry Prettyman[2]

History Edit

The Portland Academy and Female Seminary was founded in 1851 on property donated by some of Portland's early residents. Although the area may not have been fully platted at the time, it corresponded to block 205 along Park Street on the Survey of Portland Map of 1852[3] and blocks 205 and 224 on East and West Park Avenue on later maps.[4] The school's location was so remote in 1851 that some parents feared their children would get lost on their way to and from school. The property deed given to James H. Wilbur, a leader in the Methodist Episcopal Oregon Mission, specified "a male and female seminary," but for unknown reasons the school was named the Portland Academy and Female Seminary.[2]

C. S. Kingsley, later Superintendent of Portland Public Schools,[5] was the first principal. By 1852, P.G. Buchanan had become principal and Kingsley had returned to his duties for the Willamette District of the Methodist Mission.[6] From the beginning, the school referred to teaching staff by gender specific titles, where men were teachers and women were preceptresses.[2]

In 1854 the Oregon Territorial Legislature provided for funding of public schools, and in 1858 Portland's Central School opened on Sixth Avenue between Morrison and Yamhill Streets.[7] Enrollment at the Portland Academy began to decrease, and when Portland High School was constructed in 1869, the Portland Academy soon became obsolete. It closed in 1876, and the property was deeded to Willamette University.[2]

Unaffiliated institutions would later use the name, Portland Academy.

Notable alumni Edit

See also Edit

Further reading Edit

  • MacColl, Merchants, Money, & Power (The Georgian Press, 1988)

References Edit

  1. ^ The Academy occupied two blocks on SW Jefferson Street on opposite sides of East and West Park Avenue. The coordinates provided here are for the location of the building pictured in the photograph, now the site of the First Christian Church and the Ladd Apartment Building.
  2. ^ a b c d Moreland, J.C. (May 1900). "Pioneer Seat of Learning: The Portland Academy and Female Seminary". Oregon Native Son. Portland. pp. 286–294. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  3. ^ Survey of Portland, 1852 (Map) (PDF ed.). City of Portland Planning and Sustainability. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  4. ^ Portland Paving Map c 1894 (Map) (PDF ed.). City of Portland Planning and Sustainability. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  5. ^ Eliot, Thomas Lamb (1876). "History of the Public Schools of Multnomah County, Ogn". Portland Public Schools. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 9, 2015. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  6. ^ Minutes of the Annual Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church for the Year 1852. Vol. 5. New York: Carlton and Phillips. 1852. p. 150.
  7. ^ The site would later be occupied by the Portland Hotel.
  8. ^ The Biographical Cyclopaedia of American Women ... Vol. 2. Halvord Publishing Company. 1925. pp. 41–44. Retrieved October 31, 2022.   This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.

External links Edit