The O’Kane Building is a historic commercial building in Bend, Oregon, United States. The structure was built in 1916 by Hugh O’Kane, a Bend businessman. The two-story building originally housed six retail stores and a theater on the first floor with twenty offices and an apartment upstairs.
The building is located on the west corner of Oregon Avenue and Bond Street in downtown Bend. It has been in continuous use as a commercial building since it first opened. Today, the O’Kane Building is still the largest commercial structure in downtown Bend. Because of its importance to the history of Bend, the O’Kane Building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Hugh O’Kane was born in County Antrim, Ireland in 1857. As a young boy, he illegally immigrated to the United States by stowing away on a New York bound ship. By the age of 12, he was selling newspapers and shining shoes on the streets of New York City. He later learned the tailoring trade, but was always looking for adventure. Before he settled in Bend, O’Kane worked as tailor, sailor, miner, stage coach driver, dispatch rider, horse trainer, and mule packer.
In the 1870s, he packed supplies in North Dakota and Montana for the United States Army during its campaign against the Sioux Indians. At the time of the battle of the Little Bighorn, O'Kane was supporting General Alfred H. Terry’s column, to which Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and the 7th Cavalry were also attached. Later, O'Kane mined gold in the Black Hills, making a $50,000 fortune; only to lose it all gambling. From there, he moved west, packing provisions for pioneers and miners in Montana and Colorado.