It may come as a shock that not too long ago, Portland was known throughout the country as a Mecca of vice and sin.

It was a wide-open town, with purveyors of all the traditional vices operating openly under the noses of the local police. All you had to do was pay them off
them, and of course their bosses in city hall.

Then, one day in the spring of 1956, it all blew up in everyoneís faces with newspaper exposes, indictments of public officials, and shameful national headlines. It couldnít have been more embarrassing.

So naturally, when it was all over, everyone went back to whatever they were doing before and pretended it never happened.

For decades now, itís been Portlandís biggest dirty little secret. Not any more, though
because itís all right here in Portland Confidential.
"Phil Stanford wrote a best seller about the fascinating mob history that was going on right in our town.  The book is Portland Confidential and it is a must read . . . a vivid picture of what life was like in Portland."

―Dave Rogoway
Stumptown Blogger

March 3, 2010

"Portland Confidential lays it out in all its gritty glory, rattling skeletons in the city's many musty closets. Stanford preserves some fantastic tales of a very different Portland."

―Kimberly Hartnett
The Seattle Times

October 24, 2004

"Stanford obviously loves this stuff, and he recounts the rise and fall of "Big" Jim Elkins, the era's premier crime boss, with a street-smart sneer. The zing and zip of the narrative make this a fast read."

―Zach Dundas
Willamette Week
November 2010


Phil Stanford | 2940 SE Berkeley Place, Portland, Oregon 97202 | (503) 786-7090 |