I have included the Mississippi neighborhood in both NE Portland and N Portland, because it straddles the line. Mississippi neighborhood is the common name that Portlanders use for this neighborhood- but Boise is the official name, spilling north into Humboldt and south a little bit into Elliot. This is one of the hottest neighborhoods in Portland right now- with trendy shops, cafes and eateries, plus an area of Food Carts. The street is full of color and art, and it just draws you in and makes you want to stay and enjoy it. The streets around Mississippi neighborhood are full of charming, colorful and historic homes of all sizes and styles, some funky and some gorgeous!
The boundaries are not exact, but I would say from I 5 on the west, Williams to the east, Alberta to the north and Fremont to the south. There are some really amazing food carts in this neighborhood, Williams is just a few blocks away, and that is exploding too. Plus the neighborhood is just a few blocks from the Max Train on Interstate- there is a footbridge that goes over I-5 to Interstate and the stop is right there! There are shops here that I love to go do. The ReBuilding Center is a non profit community enhancement organization that takes in old windows, hardware, used lumber, doors and other things, and then sells them to homeowners who are restoring their historic homes. I have bought many different things here. Prices are reasonable, and the selection is amazing from leaded glass windows, to handcrafted doors and windows, to hard to find hardward and other decorations. It is the largest non profit used building material supply store in North America! They also give classes to kids to teach them the different aspects of building.
The Mississippi neighborhood is still coming up- Lots of the houses have already been restored, and more are being fixed up all the time. People who know about this area, seem to like the business district and shops as much as they like Hawthorne or Sellwood- it is just not as well known. There are all types of styles, including Victorian, Old PDX, farmhouse, Craftsman, Bungalow, condos and newer beautiful homes built in the Craftsman style. You can search for homes in this neighborhood, and sign up to get listings by neighborhood and price, as soon as they are listed, on my website.
Above is a collage showing some of the features of Mississippi- all the cool shops, the Victorian homes, the down to earth-back to nature feeling with the chickens….It is a unique, creative neighborhood full of vibrance and life! Lots of unique, quality, hip shops- none of the fast food or big corporate businesses!
There is also a Community Garden- The Boise Elliot Community Garden
History of Mississippi Neighborhood
Mississippi-Boise area was settled in the mid 1800’s by shipworkers – it was a thriving community- with a downtown business area, public transportation and families! Mississippi Neighborhood became home to blacks that were wiped out in the huge flood in 1948- This is a sad story: In the 1940’s, the city built VanPort, which was built on a flood plane to house shipworkers – now called Delta Park. 100,000 people had moved into the area- with nowhere to live. Portland had a policy that kept blacks confined to the small Albina neighborhood- but with the great influx of all these people, 6000 of them black- they had to figure out what to do with them. VanPort was the first area in Portland for integrated living. With 40,000 people pressed together in thin-walled buildings, some working days and others at night, noise was constant. Because both mothers and fathers worked, children were often left unattended. And thanks to the Northwest weather and the project’s location, mud was everywhere. For many, though, the biggest adjustment was living beside people different from themselves.
It seemed to be working ok, until 1948, when there was a horrible flood. The little city was wiped out, the blacks had nowhere to go, so moved into the Albina-Mississippi area. Later, when Interstate 5 was built right through the Mississippi Neighborhood, it went downhill even farther- so that in the late 80’s it was full of drugs, gangs, street crime, prostitution, abandoned houses — all the elements of urban decay To learn more about the flood and what happened
In the 1990’s, the city started the revitalization project with the Mississippi Historic District Target Area implemented so they could improve public safety, upgrade housing and attract businesses. They offered home improvement loans, the PDC offers the 20% Down payment Assistance Program, they built the MAX Train line and gave loans to businesses. It is amazing how much and how quickly this area has changed! And it is still getting better and growing! There are now more than 40 businesses in the Mississippi Neighborhood– most of them new. Plus an area for Food Carts– on N Mississippi and N Skidmore! Here is walkscore map showing the different restaurants and shops in this neighborhood.
Shops Restaurants and other things
There are lots of good places to eat, drink and shop on Mississippi Ave.
The Rebuilding Center, we came here when we were working on our house, and designing a greenhouse, and a treehouse to find windows, doors and other cool things. Their mottos is to rebuild the community through reuse.
The Meadow, the shop’s name was chosen because we wanted to create a place that felt like coming home, where personal connections and sensual pleasures welcome you. Spend time amidst beautiful fresh cut flowers, taste strange and enticing foods, and explore the astonishing depth of the elemental ingredients.
The Herb Shoppe has over 300 different herbs, powders, spices and tinctures and they can either help you mix your own concoction, or they can do it for you.
North Portland Bike Works is a non profit bike shop that sells new and used bikes and fixes them or sells you the parts! They also give workshops! I ride my bike alot, so I feel this is a really important service to keep everyone outside, moving and healthy!
Another Read Through
another of my favorite things! Reading! This is how you learn and enrich your life! I love to get books for my grandchildren to read too, and second hand is the best way!
There are lots of Food Carts in Mississippi with lot of different types of food at 4233 N Mississippi. There are also alot of good restaurants of all types of food, from breweries to sushi, to pizza to thai and everything in between!
Festivals, Schools, and other links
It is a hot new street fair that has just been around for a few years, built on the wave of all the new hip businesses, restaurants, shops, pubs etc that have opened up on Mississippi. It is just a short street, but thousands of people come, more every year. There is live entertainment on 5 stages, 200 venders, and lots of food and drink and fun. There isn’t much parking, but people can take public transportation- it is pretty easy to get there by Max or bus or bike!
- Boise Elliot is really 2 different neighborhoods in one with 2 Neighborhood Associations- Elliot and Boise
- Boise-Eliot Elementary
- Harriet Tubman Leadership Academy for Young Women – Grade levels: 6-12
- Jefferson High School
The MAX and buses make public transportation really good!
Schools In Portland- people are permitted to send their children to whatever school they want within the Portland School District, as long as there is room. If the school is important to you, it is probably a good idea to check and see which school your neighborhood is assigned to- because it seems logical that the best schools will have a waiting list- and if you live there, you will be at the top! Find your school attendance area or a school site and view the boundary area using School Locator Page for: Portland Public Schools..
Read how to use the interactive map by clicking on the (Information) icon (circle with an i in the center).
School Report Cards for schools and districts in Oregon. Select (Portland SD 1J) In the District Selection Heading to view individual schools within the Portland Public School District.
You can find all kinds of All kinds of information about crime, maps, etc, Portlandmaps.com even exactly what happened where, if you just put in an address in Portland. There are lots of other things you can learn there- like census information, maps, school info, parks, environmental issues, permits on houses, nuisance complaints and taxes.