A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Cumberland update: Steeple’s still up there

Written August 27th, 2021 by Hasso Hering

All that bracing, seen Friday evening, is in preparation for lifting the steeple off and moving it.

Every evening lately I’ve ridden the bike past the former Cumberland Church to see if the steeple had been lifted off and moved in advance of moving the building itself, as is the plan. As you can see above, the answer is “not yet.”

But Friday night I discovered a previously unread message from Emma Eaton, president of the Cumberland Community Events Center.

“I just got an update on the steeple,” she had written Tuesday. “The steeple will be moved September 1, Wednesday, provided the city has  completed the paperwork.”

Paperwork? The events center group has applied for a building permit to cover moving the old church from 401 Main Street, where it was built in 1892 and enlarged about 30 years later, to 520 Pine Street.

The city’s building division says on its website that it received the permit application on Aug. 16. On Friday night the permit was listed as “pending.” No word on when it might be issued.

The Cumberland group has contracted with Emmert International of Clackamas to move the church, which will involve crossing the tracks of the Union Pacific and Portland & Western railroads on Santiam Road.

In his Friday report to the city council, City Manager Peter Troedsson said the Cumberland group had received confirmation from the railroad — he didn’t say which one — through the building mover that they can accommodate a move on Thursday, Sept. 16.

“After closing on the purchase of the building, their plan is to move it on the 16th,” Troedsson added. “The resulting hole in the ground at the existing site, will be fenced off.” (hh)








5 responses to “Cumberland update: Steeple’s still up there”

  1. Francois DeLacroix says:

    It is not at all clear why a project like this one, moving the Lord’s House, should require a permit from secular authorities. God will provide in the instance of lumbering churches crossing railroad right of way.

    • Gordon L. Shadle says:

      City government thinks you and the church folk are stupid, or at least ignorant about your own needs and interests.

      City government assumes we couldn’t get by without them, whether we like it or not.

      City government orders people to do things like getting and paying for a permit as a common good. It’s a source of pride. Perhaps even hubris.

      Telling people how to run their lives and make decisions are really fun perks of working for city government.

      Just wait for Bob Woods to respond to this comment. He is a retired city employee who doesn’t live in the city, but thinks Albany government can do no wrong. He’ll confirm my viewpoint.

      • Fate from Farm State says:

        Gordon L. Shadle for PREZ 2024

        or City Manager of “A-town” 2022?

        Hoping to beat Bob to the beat.

    • Richard Vannice says:

      Mr. DeLacroix – while well taken it is a moot point. With the Cumberland Groups acquisition the building went from a “Religious Structure” to a “Commercial Venture”, (i.e rental for various occasions) It is much akin to saying that an old one room school house that was purchased from a school district, moved and remodeled into a comfortable home being exempt from taxes because it was once a school.
      It’s too bad Oregon doesn’t have a park such as the Heritage Park in West Fargo, N.D. that has old buildings including a church. The church that is presently on site replaced one that had been so damaged in a fire that it had to be demolished. We have relatives in that area and have visited the Museum several times.

  2. James Engel says:

    Aawww come’on people. Lets get this church moved come heaven or high water. Together it will be a great place. O YA…donate at their web site …please….


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