Historic Booth Bank – Downtown Roseburg
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May 9, 2017
Masonic Temple
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Historic Booth Bank

In 1902 a two-story brick building was constructed on the northeast corner of Jackson and Oak Streets. The first bank occupied only the southwest corner of the new building; the Board of Trade and later Chapman’s Red Cross Pharmacy occupied the northwest portion, and offices utilized the east half. The building had a main corner entryway and an arched entry to the offices on the Oak Street side. Windows were double-hung with diamond lights in the upper sash. The first expansion occurred in 1909 when the bank moved to utilize the entire west half and the name was changed to Douglas National Bank. Between 1920 and 1925 the bank building underwent a complete transformation. The result was a Classical building covered with tan, striated brick with a centered front entryway topped by a pediment. Flanking the entryway were colossal half columns rising to the frieze on which the name “Douglas National Bank.”¬†was carved.

A modillioned cornice topped the structure. Windows were simple double-hung, multi-pane on the second story. An interior renovation also occurred at this time using several kinds of marble and generally upgrading the bank space. In the mid-1930s another expansion occurred when the building to the north was remodeled and covered with tan brick to harmonize with the main bank building. The frieze was continued forty (40) feet to the north on the front of the structure and twenty (20) on the rear. The modillioned cornice with rosette trim was also continued. In 1936 U.S. Bank of Oregon (based in Portland) purchased Roseburg’s only other bank, the Roseburg National Bank. In 1943 the two Roseburg banks merged under the name U.S. National Bank of Oregon, Roseburg Branch. At this time the words “U.S. National Bank of Portland” appear on the frieze.

After the 1959 Blast, another major architectural change took place. The original bank building was outfitted with two-story cast iron tree centered on the front facade and in between each of six pilasters on the south side. A large diagonal entry was carved out on the southwest corner and was emphasized by vertical bands of brick. The Classical cornice added in the 1920s was not altered. An interior renovation removed most of the marble, lowered the ceiling, and in general “modernized” the structure. The second floor continued to be used as office space in its original configuration and was opened to the second floor of the adjacent building to the north. The Benjamin Franklin Savings and Loan occupied the building for some years until taken over by Bank of America in 1990. Douglas County’s first bank, organized in 1883, was located at 839 SE Jackson Street, in Roseburg. W.E. Humphrey and S.C. Flint were the owners. Through several changes of management and ownership by 1901 the bank evolved to the Douglas County Bank with R.A. Booth of Eugene and J.H. Booth of Roseburg as owners along with several other investors. J.H. Booth was elected president of the bank, but resigned in December of 1902 with Frank Benson taking over that office. In 1905 J.H. Booth was elected cashier and continued in that position until 1909 when he was elected president, an office he held through the early 1940s. The Douglas County Bank, later named the Douglas National Bank, moved from this building in 1960.