Photos by Cheryl Landes
The Deepwood House & Museum consists of a Queen Anne Victorian home, carriage house, greenhouse, formal beaux-arts gardens, and nature trail on five acres near the Oregon State Capitol Building and Bush’s Pasture Park in Salem.
Architect William Knighton designed the home and carriage house for Dr. Luke A. Port and his wife, Lizzie. The house was built in 1894.
The house has a sunroom called a solarium, which is pictured below on the right.
The Ports lived there for only 16 months. In 1895, George Greenwood Bingham, an attorney and professor at nearby Willamette University, bought the house for his family. George and his wife lived there until they died in 1924.
After George and his wife’s deaths, their daughter, Alice, sold the home to Clifford and Alice Brown. The Browns extensively renovated the house but kept most of its original features and design. They moved into the house after the renovations were finished in 1925.
Clifford died in 1927, but Alice continued living in the house for 43 years. In 1929, she hired the first female-owned landscape firm in the Northwest, Elizabeth Lord & Edith Schryver, to design and install the formal gardens.
When Lord and Schryver finished the gardens, Alice named the property Deepwood after the children’s book, The Hollow Tree and the Deep Woods, by Albert Bigelow Paine.
Alice remarried in 1945. She and her husband, Keith Powell, lived at Deepwood until 1968.
Today, the City of Salem owns Deepwood, and the Friends of Deepwood manage the property. The home is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Several events are held here throughout the year, such as the Wine & Jazz Fest and the Children’s Halloween Party.
The gardens and nature trails are open daily from dawn to dusk. Tours of the house will resume when safety concerns from COVID-19 subside.
The Deepwood House & Museum is located at 1116 Mission Street SE near downtown Salem. For more information, visit deepwoodmuseum.org.
Salem is 45 miles south of Portland.