This oral history interview with Flavel W. Temple was conducted by Linda Watkins from April 30 to May 1, 1992, and by Jim Strassmaier at Temple's office in Lake Oswego, Oregon, on October 13, 1992. Tapes 1 and 2 are missing, but their contents are included in an incomplete transcript. The interview was conducted in 3 sessions.
In the first interview session, conducted on April 30, 1992, Temple discusses his family background and early life in Pendleton, Oregon, including his education and his family's ownership of the Temple Hotel. He talks about his experience at Behnke-Walker Business School in Portland, getting his start in the hotel business, and his experience during the Depression. He speaks at length about running the Washington Hotel in Portland, including the state the hotel was in when he took over, instituting weekly rates, and refurbishing the hotel. He also talks about speakeasies in Portland during Prohibition and about running the Congress Hotel in Portland. He describes his involvement in the Oregon Democratic Party, and talks about his involvement with several other clubs and organizations. He talks about racial discrimination in the hotel business and his reasons for being complicit in perpetuating it. He talks about his marriage to Hazel McBride in 1940, running a hotel during World War II, and his involvement with the Al Kader Temple of the Shriners. He also revisits the topic of running the Washington Hotel. He talks about his interest in a gold mine in Idaho; speaks at length about learning to fly planes and his involvement with various aviation organizations; and describes his interest in opera. He talks about his children, their families, and their careers; his interest in boating; and revisits his involvement with the Al Kader Temple and other organizations. He also discusses running the Timber Topper Restaurant.
In the second interview session, conducted on May 1, 1992, Temple continues discussing his involvement with the Al Kader Temple at length, particularly events he helped to organize and the organization's charitable works, including the Shriners Children's Hospital. He also talks about the Al Kader building and the decline in fraternal organizations' membership. He describes the car collision that killed his wife, Hazel Temple, and put him in the hospital for five months, and he talks about organizing the Oregon Restaurant Association during his recovery. He also talks about his involvement in the U.S. Army Association. He then revisits the topic of his recovery from the car collision. He talks about his marriage to Rachel E. Boyce and his involvement with the Save Our Stadium committee, and returns to the topic of managing the Washington Hotel. He discusses his travels with Rachel Temple in a motor home, revisits his involvement with the Al Kader Temple, and talks about the sale of the Washington Hotel and others in 1972. He describes his retirement activities, and talks about awards he received. He then tells a few anecdotes from his youth, about managing the Washington Hotel, about his involvement with the Al Kader Temple, and others. He reflects on his accomplishments and talks about his hopes for the future.
In the third and final interview session, conducted on October 13, 1992, Temple discusses arriving in Portland in 1932 and how he became involved in the hotel industry. He talks about his early years of managing the Washington Hotel during the Depression and Prohibition; discusses his involvement with the Democratic Party; and discusses running the Timber Topper Restaurant. He describes the improvements he made to the Washington Hotel, dealing with labor unions, and the sale of the Washington Hotel in 1972. He discusses the changes in the hotel industry from 1932 to the time of the interview in 1992, as well as hotel associations that he was involved with. He speaks about his marriage to and divorce from Judith Evangeline Hoffman, and talks about their child. He then talks about his involvement with the Al Kader Temple; describes the car collision that killed his wife, Hazel Temple, and put him in the hospital for five months; and speaks about learning to fly planes and his involvement with various aviation organizations. He discusses raising money for the Shiners Children's Hospital. He closes the interview by revisiting the topic of his involvement with the Democratic Party.
Temple, Flavel W. (Flavel Wells), 1902-2001