The quotation above, surely one of the greatest in architectural lore, came from a mid-20th Century master of the glass and steel skyscraper, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Of course, its meaning is not limited to the modern era.
Nobody in Portland has a better sense of late 19th-Century classical details than architect William J. Hawkins III, who has devoted a long career to architectural research, writing and design. When the 1888 Morris Marks house, above, was moved to its new location after a prolonged struggle over siting and transportation, Hawkins knew that the classic Italianate house was missing some elegant details in its elaborate wooden facade.
Before the move, this long-neglected stick-built house was close to becoming a pile of kindling. The time-lapse video below illustrates how the building was sliced into two pieces in order to be removed from the original site on S.W. 12th Ave. The move was complicated by the presence of MAX and streetcar wires that limited route options, and by a pedestrian overpass that thwarted a move down S.W. Broadway.