Category Archives: Writing

Book Launch Tour for Railway Palaces of Portland, Oregon

It’s celebration time! It’s been a few months since the release of The Railway Palaces of Portland, Oregon: The Architectural Legacy of Henry Villard. Because things have been busy, I’ve had little time to mark the occasion. At the end … Continue reading

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Quote: Don’t Ask What I’m Writing

“If writers agree on anything — which is unlikely — it’s that nothing can damage a novel in embryo as quickly and effectively as trying to describe it before it’s ready. Unfortunately, because we’re writers, aka bipedal nests of contradictions, … Continue reading

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A Child’s View

It occurs to me that I have always viewed the world as a child views a kitchen counter-top: on my toes, peering over a divide, trying to see what goes on where I am not even thought of.

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If I have any prototype, it is the detective

If I have any prototype, it is the detective. — Sometimes when I think of my research and my work around cities, I compare it to others and balk. I think of all the high theory and the sophisticated language … Continue reading

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Cultural Landscapes Defined

So just what are cultural landscape studies? As the study of them plays a significant role in my academic work, I get asked this question a lot, so I felt I should try and answer it here. Consider this, then, the most cursory of … Continue reading

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Getting to know dead people

Being a writer with a strong interest in the region’s history, I find myself running across certain names with great repetition. It is hard, for example, not to read about the Ladds in Portland, or John McLoughlin in the pre-territory … Continue reading

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New Digs / Good-bye, route99west

For some time now, I’ve had a web site of some form or other on the domain This blog, for example, has sat on for something like 5 years, maybe 6. I chose the name for various reasons, … Continue reading

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Another new assignment

As a writer, This year has been a rather busy one for me, and now there’s yet another assignment to add to the mix. Effective with the August issue, I am now a columnist for Railfan & Railroad magazine. Titled … Continue reading

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Recent publications update

Fresh from the post and the printers: the “Portland Switching District Project: An Overview” in the National Railroad Historical Society Bulletin It’s been a busy spring, and there’s a few more publications to add to the list. First up: “The … Continue reading

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Another publication… or dozen… or more.

I was updating my comprehensive publications list over at and it really hit home to me, this year has been one of a lot of writing. There are, so far, 21 bylines from 2011 alone, and the year is … Continue reading

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