History of Goose Hollow

goose hollow portland laughing planet

We have good news. Laughing Planet is opening up a new location in Portland. It’s at SW Jefferson St. & 18th Ave, in the Goose Hollow neighborhood.

To commemorate our becoming a part of the Goose Hollow community, we thought we’d take a look back at the history of the place. We may be intergalactic, time-traveling burrito ambassadors, but let it never be said that we have no reverence for history.

The history of the area now known as Goose Hollow starts with a guy named Daniel Lownsdale. Once upon a time, he owned and operated the first tannery west of the Rocky Mountains. It sat where JELD-WEN Field and the Multnomah Athletic Club are today. In 1845, he built the first house in the Goose Hollow area, near the north end of the area currently known as “The Flats.”

Portlanders have long been fans of raising animals, and the residents of the late-1800s were no exception. As you might have guessed, geese were a popular choice in the area.

These days, you have to keep your backyard chickens under control, but back then, there were no such ordinances. The women of Goose Hollow let their geese roam free. The geese surely didn’t mind, but it did end up causing problems.

When one gaggle of geese ran into another gaggle of geese, the geese were like, “Hey. How’s it going? You guys want to hang out?” And hang out they did, much to the consternation of their owners. Geese are pretty hard to tell apart, and the resulting disputes over who owned which geese are the stuff of local legend.

Picture this: Victorian ladies cat-fighting in the streets of Goose Hollow. Maybe we should bring that back… you know, as a special event once a year? No? OK. Anyway, it got so bad that the police had to break it up, split the gaggle, and end the dispute by threatening the participants with time in the slammer.

That was the end of the “War About Geese,” as it was called in the August 17th, 1875 issue of The Daily Oregonian, but the name stuck.

We’re excited to be a part of the neighborhood, and we hope you’ll come and visit us in our new location at SW 18th & Jefferson. Here’s to Goose Hollow!


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