Bowen Building

1809 Main Street, Baker City, OR

Two story cast iron and stone commercial building built in 1886


Bowen Building

Photo taken by Richard Doody in June 2014



J.P. Bowen constructed this building to house his hardware store in 1886. The site was originally occupied by a log cabin saloon, the first building on Main Street.

The Bowen Building survived a disastrous fire in 1888. Its sturdy stone construction and metal doors and shutters resisted the heat and embers. The local newspaper said, "It stood in the midst of the fierce flames and dared them to do their worst." The building was credited with blocking the fire from spreading to other nearby structures.

The Bowen Building retains its original cast iron pilasters from Cherry & Parkes of Albany, OR. The Original metal cornice has been replaced by a wooden replica.

Update Log 

  • November 26, 2018: New photos from Richard Doody
  • November 26, 2018: Added by Richard Doody


  • Richard Doody