Portland Street Names – October 06, 1921 – Couch

Portland Street Names – October 06, 1921 – Couch

From the October 06, 1921 Oregonian.
Portland Street Names - October 06, 1921 - Couch

When “C” street was renamed Couch street in 1891 it was in honor of Captain John H. Couch, a sea captain who made his first voyage from the Atlantic to the mouth of the Columbia in 1840. He could not get up the river then, according to his biography, on account of obstacles thrown in his way by the Hudson Bay company, so his cargo was taken to the Sandwich Islands.

In 1849 with a Mr. Sherman he purchased the Modonna, a sailing vessel, and left New York in January, 1849 with a cargo for Portland. He landed here the following August and established a store in which to sell the goods he had brought.

In this capacity he became a prominent businessman and also entered into civic affairs, having held a number of positions of trust. He was territorial treasurer under the administration of Governor Abernethy in the provisional government, and also a commissioner of Multnomah county. When the office of inspector of hulls was created by the government he was appointed and held the office for several successive administrations.

Captain Couch was born in Newberryport, Mass., on February 21, 1811. He died in Portland on January 19, 1870, and his biography says that no funeral so large or so widely observed had ever been held in the city. The whole town closed for it and practically every citizen either attended or watched the procession.

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