Friends of Timberline was founded in 1975 for the purpose of preserving the art and artifacts created by the original builders of Timberline Lodge. The incentive to create a friends support group originated with a gentle complaint by a hotel guest, that she thought the curtains in her room were a bit shabby. From that comment Richard L. Kohnstamm Area Operator of Timberline Lodge, recruited civil leader John (Jack) Mills to form a group to look into restoration of the Lodge textiles and artifacts. A core group of Portland citizens quickly formed and took their task seriously. An agreement was signed with the U.S. Forest Service and the textile project began. Marlene Gabel (pictured standing in the CETA workroom) headed the program and later Linny Adamson took over as Curator of the Lodge. A job she continues to have. To date more than 3500 yards of hand woven fabric and 100 hand hooked rugs have been produced by dedicated craftspeople. FOT continues preservations projects such as cleaning all the art within the Lodge and repairing historic lighting and furniture, but Friends of Timberline has now evolved to initiate and fund large projects that could not be accomplished without our non-profit status allowing donations and foundation grants. FOT has a unique and close relationship with RLK and Company and the US Forest Service forming a strong partnership to ensure Timberline’s future as a Living Museum and National Historic Landmark for the over two million visitors a year.
Our goals for the Lodge are not limited to the physical structure of the building and environs. The archives of the Friends of Timberline preserve the history of the Lodge and that of the builders. We also work with our partners, to support new generations of craftspeople to ensure the retention of the skills necessary to sustain the preservation of the Lodge.
The following timeline details FOT's significant past and current projects.
Friends of Timberline established by Jack Mills and Richard Kohnstamm for the purpose of restoring the art and furnishing at Timberline Lodge.
The Textile Renovation project in the CETA workshops. Under the direction of Marlene Gabel and later Linny Adamson, new draperies and upholstery fabrics were hand woven and new rugs were hand hooked by craftspeople. Many still work for the lodge, producing the more than 4,000 yards of fabric and 100 rugs needed by the lodge over the years. Textiles production is ongoing today.
Linny Adamson is the first designated official full time curator of Timberline Lodge. She continues to hold this position.
The Wy’East Day Lodge is built to provide services to the large number of day visitors to the ski area. Friends originally provided dining tables, chairs and contemporary art. We continue to provide textiles and décor items. Our most recent contribution is four hand carved wooded animal corbels mounted in the main staircase.
Friends of Silcox Hut, the group was founded by Nancy Randall for the purpose of restoring the abandoned warming hut, one mile above Timberline Lodge. Friends of Silcox did a fantastic job creating ironwork, wood construction and lighting. Friends of Timberline supported the restoration with textiles. Now on the National Register of Historic Places, Silcox is managed by R.L.K. and Company as a very successful extension of the lodge.
Silcox Hut was built by the WPA and finished in 1939. It was named after Ferdinand Silcox, the fifth Chief of the Forest Service, 1933–1939.
The hut was the upper terminal of the original Magic Mile chairlift and housed the lift's upper bullwheel in what is now the guest sleeping quarters. It was also intended as a warming hut and starting point for climbers. After the chairlift was relocated in 1962, it was abandoned and became derelict due to vandalism and fierce mountain weather.
Silcox Hut was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985. In the same year, the Friends of Silcox Hut was created as a non-profit organization. Over the course of the late 1980s and early 1990s, The Friends of Silcox Hut renovated and reopened Silcox to the public in 1993. It is current managed by RLK and Company and provides overnight accommodations for groups up to 24 guests.
Rachael Griffin Historic Exhibition Center was installed to showcase the art and artifacts at the lodge as well as creating a space for craft demonstrations. The Exhibits includes a model guestroom, the Coyote Den for media presentations and examples of all crafts used at the lodge. There are both permanent and revolving displays.
The Barlow Room restoration project was made possible by a matching grant from the Meyer Memorial Trust. The room decorated with original Doug Lynch linoleum panels “Calendar of Mountain Sports” had seen many changes and uses since originally built as the Ski Grill. Under the supervision of Marjorie Wintermute, FAIA, the room was carefully taken apart and restored. The Lynch murals were cleaned and stabilized. The Barlow Room now is an inviting place that hosts everything from business meetings to wedding dinners and Forest Service interpretive tours.
The Landscape Project was launched. Patricia Wessinger chaired the FOT project and commissioned nationally renowned landscape architect, Barbara Fealy to create a design with native materials, blending the barren foundation of the Wy’East lodge and Timberline to the mountain’s natural beauty.
The Light Up The Lodge project began small with the commission of floor and table lamps for the lobby and guestrooms as a gift to the lodge for its 60th Anniversary. The project gained momentum after a significant fundraising auction and a matching grant from the Meyer Memorial Trust. To date we have a major installation of custom designed lighting in the Mt. Hood and Mt. Jeff banquet rooms and guestroom hallways. Under the direction of Dick Spies, the project continues with lighting of the Timberline art collection.
New Winter Entrance Competition (2004) to design a replacement for the existing “Quonset hut” entrance currently used at the lodge. The national competition was sponsored by the Clackamas County Tourism Development Council.
Winter Entrance Project fundraising and construction (2005 - 2009) FOT sponsored public viewing of the entries and winning design. We began serious fundraising and grant writing, completing the funding in Spring 2009. Front steps and landing reconstruction (foundation for new Winter Entrance) completed in Oct. 2008 with donated in-kind services and materials. Installed finished entrance structure on Oct. 3, 2009.
Timberline Lodge Amphitheater Restoration Project began with a gift from Sylvia Owens in the name of her late husband Don Owens whose Father was a stone mason at the lodge. We rebuilt the amphitheater and continue to re-landscape the surrounding area. The space is used for concerts and weddings and general relaxation in the beautiful surroundings. It was completed in Oct. 2006. Every other year we sponsor a work day and reseal the wood and do maintenance on the landscape.
Light Up the Art at Timberline Lodge Project October 2012 Project construction begins with Phase 1 the Mezzanine. The goal is to properly light the art in the public spaces at the Lodge. We also intend to remove and or upgrade surface electric conduit to improve visual impact while using energy efficient upgrades wherever possible.
FOT participation in the 75th Anniversary Celebration of Timberline Lodge
August: Pendleton Woolen Mills Vintage Rug show and sale.
September: “A Tribute to Tradition” Heritage Fair outreach event. Postmark Event with Timberline Jubilee and Mt. Hood postmarks, outreach event.
The first in the series of postmarks was issued to celebrate Timberline's 75th Anniversary on Sept.28, 2012. The postmark was only issued for one day at an event at Timberline Lodge.
The other postmarks in the series will be issued approximately one per month between now and March of 2013 at Post Offices in the following communities: Rhododendron, Welches, Brightwood, Sandy and Mt. Hood Parkdale.
October: FOT Annual meeting and 75th Anniversary Party. Sandy, OR Library Archival Rug show.
November: Art Institute of Portland Archival Rug show and New Timberline Scarf display.
FRIENDS OF TIMBERLINE
PO Box 69544
Portland, OR 97239
© 2014 Friends of Timberline