For our Amazing Tours of Portland, Oregon 
New Website Coming Summer 2016

Find all of our upcoming walking tours for purchase online.  

Plus gift card holders can also reserve spots for tours online!



 Non-Profit Community Partners 

21st Avenue Bar and Grill

The Aperture Project 

Child's Play Toys 

Creative Roots 

The Dan Volkmer Team

Friendly House

The Freakybuttrue Peculiarium

Inner City Properties

Jim & Patty's Coffee: Immediate Care Center

Lompoc Tavern

New Seasons Slabtown

NW Portland Hostel & Guesthouse 

Santa Fe Taqueria 

Sasha Welford - Debbie Thomas Real Estate 

SELCO Community Credit Union 

Slabtown Community Festival 

Vintners Cellar 

Windermere Stellare

Click Here to make your reservation today.

About your tour guide . . .

Former Northwest Portlander 
Tanya Lyn March received her doctoral degree in Urban Studies from Portland State University in 2010, focusing on historic preservation and community development. She has a master's degree in Historic Preservation  from Columbia University and is raising two young boys who attend Metropolitan Learning Center in Northwest Portland. She is currently working on a book about home front experiences of children who lived in the Guild's Lake Courts war housing in Northwest Portland during World War II. 

What Portland experts have to say about your tour guide:
"Tanya March is a deeply knowledgeable historian and historic preservation professional with skills to delve deeply into any question about urban growth."
-Carl Abbot, historian and prolific author 

 "Great researcher. Very involved in city planning and neighborhood activities. Fully engaged in the Portland community." 
-Chet Orloff, director and president of Museum of the City.
"Tanya has contributed numerous times to the online architecture magazine for which I am the editor. Her knowledge of Portland's history and its built environment is impressive, yet she is equally adept at communicating and bringing alive that which she writes about - making history resonate for a broad contemporary audience. What's more, she's never missed a deadline."
- Brian Libby, freelance journalist

 "An extraordinary archival researcher with a talent for identifying and recognizing the content of historical photos I have never seen in anyone else." 
-Tim Askin, owner at Pacific History Services

 "Ran an excellent class on historic preservation and helped inspire the creation of our neighborhood's historic district application - which is on the fast track to be the first mid-century modern listing in Oregon."

-Elizabeth Chapin, student PSU

 Find out what our guests are saying:
Slabtown Tours
Thank you Brooklyn Sherman and Olivia O. Roberts our Junior Tour Guides, these teenage interns are lending their support and enthusiasm for Portland's History. 

Easy online booking... 

  Northwest Tour #1

Nob Hill
Alphabet District

Thursdays &
Saturdays at 11AM
Northwest Tour #2
Thursdays at 1PM 
Saturdays at 2PM 

Northwest Tour #3
Historic Homes
Sundays at 2PM
Order Online.

Northwest Tour #4

A Night with Ghosts Tour 

to learn more about individual tours and to see images from the tours follow links on left most column.

Experience Portland, Oregon

With an Expert Guide

Historic Walking Tours:

Adults - $20

Seniors (65+) $18
Youths/Children $10
Tots (5 and underFree

Gift Certificates $20

A Night With Ghosts Tours:

Living Guests - $20

We Accept
American Express
and Discover


All public tours can be purchased online via EventBrite.  

To book a private group tour call:

or email

Send requests for donations to
Slabtown Tours
PO Box 83253
Portland, OR
Tours are offered year round and you might get lucky and receive a private tour in the off season.  We are looking forward to meeting you this year.

Slabtown Nob Hill Fun Fact #27

Where is Fordham Heights?

Answer:  "Fordham Heights is situated at the head of Lovejoy and Northrup streets"

Having successfully reintegrated the name “Nob Hill” into the urban fabric in the 1970s, a decade ago Mike Ryerson recruited his friends to bring the “Slabtown” name back to the working-class section of NW 23rd.

Resurrecting historic place names takes time and sometimes becomes confusing.  For example, the “Alphabet District” is larger than the Alphabet National Register Historic District, but despite the subtle difference, they suffice as wayfinding devices.  Perhaps historic place names only matter when word-searching text from the distant past to delve into the community’s neighborhood history.

But the heritage of a place can be rooted in disused names.  The old names convey and embody heritage, but if they have fallen out of use they can lack a tangible connection.  Historic names are like dates—often tedious and requiring rote memorization.  Once we lose the oral use of a place name it can be lost to collective memory.  With the advent of the car it seems to me that many mini-neighborhoods have morphed into larger tracts of land/geography and melded into one larger place name.

We at Slabtown Tours work with the Dan Volkmer Team, Northwest Children’s Theater, and the Northwest Neighborhood Cultural Center to produce an annual home tour on Father’s Day.  The tour runs from 11am to 4pm on Sunday, June 19, 2016.

The theme of this year’s event is The Fifth Annual Walking Tour:  Historic Homes of Old Nob HillThe homes are clustered near the top of Lovejoy.  (The all-volunteer team was not comfortable with any of the titles I had brainstormed, either because of a double-entendre or because the names had fallen out of use.  The struggle to “brand” an event was exacerbated by a desire to retain historic integrity yet define a sense of place that the visitor could identify.  Since no one recalls Fordham Heights or Goldsmith Hill those were unusable.)  

Here are some forgotten Northwest Portland place names:

Atkinson’s Addition: Upshur, between 25th & 26th.

Blythswood: On Thurman & Aspen, the northwest part of Willamette Heights.

Fordham Heights: The south side of Cornell, northwest of the top of Marshall.

Goldsmith Hill: The top of Lovejoy, Marshall, and Northrup Streets

Murhard Tract: North side Thurman, west side 21st.

Nob Hill Terrace: Top of Lovejoy.

Wilson’s Addition: North side of Thurman at 23rd.

Whitechapel District: 14 blocks, bounded by SW Pine, Second, NW Flanders and Fourth