Eugene’s population in 1920 was 10,953. By the end of 1928, it had swelled to 27,542. Several new buildings were planned or under construction in Eugene. The Southern Pacific Railroad was expanding; Sift and Co. were planning to open a plant in Eugene; the new State Theater was being built; a large eight-story office and retail building, the Miner Building, had just been constructed in the downtown. The University of Oregon was experiencing similar growth. In 1928, four new fraternities were built, as was a large new dormitory for 450 students.
The continued boom continued to stress the housing stock in the city. Apparently Marius Petersen understood this need and made plans to construct a new, thoroughly modern apartment house, with eighteen apartments, near the downtown. It is not known for certain when construction began on the Petersen Apartments, but a classified as for an apartment rental in the building appeared in the June 8, 1929 newspaper. An end-of-the-year article reviewing permits issued during the year, appeared December 1929, and listed the Petersen Apartments in the article.
The May 3, 1929 edition of the Daily Guard reported that the large brick residence of Marius Petersen at 2208 Fairmount Blvd. had been sold to George Wilhelm. Apparently, Marius and his wife, Marie, moved into the new Petersen Apartments building, where they are listed in the city directories as owners/managers residing in Apartment #5.
Other apartment buildings followed, although it appears that none were constructed until the mid- to late-1930s, at which time, they again tended to be smaller four and eight-unit buildings. Among these was the New Petersen Apartments, built in c. 1936 by Marius Petersen. Located at 361 W. Broadway, this apartment building has eight units. The Petersens relocated to this building at that time and resided at this address until the mid-1950s. Petersen apparently built three or four additional eight-unit buildings in that same neighborhood, within walking distance of the New Petersen Apartments, and turned his livelihood to managing apartments. Marius Petersen died in c. 1955, after which his widow managed the apartment houses until her death.
The original Petersen Apartments, on Oak Street, were sold to William Hodes in the 1930s, then to Marion Veatch in 1942. The name of the building was changed at that time to the “Marion Apartments” - the name it retains today. It is not clear when the additions were built on the back of the building, but it may have been after Veatch took ownership.