Wicked Portland Amazon page Wicked Portland Amazon page Read Facebook page View Twitter feed Wicked Portland Amazon page Introduction: About the book and how to use it Chapter One: A wide-open frontier city Chapter Two: Portland's municipal rascal Chapter 3: Portland's saloons and gambling dens Chapter 4: North End Girls Chapter 5: America's worst shanghaiing city Chapter 6: Fixing the police Chapter 7: Mayors behaving badly Chapter 8: World's dumbest drug smugglers Chapter 9: Wicked politics Chapter 10: The end of the golden age About the author Switch to mobile-device version of this page Switch to mobile-device version of this page Go to home page The Lost Chapter By Finn J.D. John


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Fixing the Police

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A political cartoon from The West Shore magazine in 1889, criticizing the police. (Image: The West Shore)

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A downtown Portland street from just a few years after the town was founded, in 1851. Note the stump in the foreground. (Image: Oregon State University Archives)


The Danford Balch murder case: This image links to a podcast from Doug Kenck-Crispin and Andy Lindberg's "Kick Ass Oregon History" series, in which they tell the story of the crime, arrest, escape, re-arrest and punishment of Portland's first convicted murderer. This was the case that would end James Lappeus's career as Portland police chief, after rumors resurfaced that he'd offered to let Balch escape from jail for a $1,000 bribe.

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Prisoners line up for coffee and breakfast in the city jailhouse, in 1889; Samuel B. Parrish was police chief at this time, and there's a rumor that he actually shanghaied a prisoner or two out of the city jail while he was in office. If true (and it most likely isn't), this would have been the facility from which the unlucky soon-to-be-seamen were abducted.

Most of the men shown here are probably in jail for drunkenness or vagrancy. (Image: The West Shore)


The Portland Police in Chinatown: This image links to a podcast from Doug Kenck-Crispin and Andy Lindberg's "Kick Ass Oregon History" series, the fourth and final one on Chinatown, in which the two public historians look at the role the cops played in Chinatown, in trying to keep a lid on the gambling, prostitution, opium smoking and occasional "Tong" (Chinese gang) killings.