918 N. Mississippi Avenue, 1932

It must be back-to-school time for Carl Opperman, standing in front of his grocery and confectionery shop at 918 N. Mississippi Avenue in 1932. Renumbered as 4236 N. Mississippi, that building now houses a laundromat on the southeast corner of Mississippi at Skidmore Street.

A2008-001.24 Carl Opperman Grocery 4236 N Mississippi Ave 1930(City of Portland Archives)

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15 Responses to “918 N. Mississippi Avenue, 1932”

  1. Bruce Urmson Says:

    sporting a hitler ‘stache

  2. larisazimmerman Says:

    I’m pretty sure the laundromat recently closed, but the back of the building houses Monsoon Thai, and previously was The Soup and Soap.

  3. T-Bag Says:

    Monsoon is a great breastaurant.

  4. Chuck Says:

    I prefer to think of the moustache as an Oliver Hardy.

  5. quadrazontil Says:

    “The new 1-P notebooks are here” I don’t think they were talking about laptops in 1932.

  6. Richard Says:

    Sadly, Carl E. Opperman was shot and killed in a robbery attempt at his store on 18 July 1967, per the Oregonian Historical Archives. Born in Iowa in 1892, he lived in Portland most of his life. He ran his Mississippi Ave. store at the same spot since the 1930s. He and wife (also wounded in the robbery) lived in back of the store.

  7. Chuck Hodges Says:

    I wonder how many people were able to afford ice cream in ’32 ?

  8. David Johnson Says:

    I knew at least 2 store owners back in that time frame that when they were robbed would say “no” to the question of “give me your money” so the robber would then shoot them. As kids we would go look at the bullet hole in the window. Anderson’s market on the corner of Lombard and Vancouver st.s. was one and the other was Hill’s market on Union and Holland st.s.Both men survived.

  9. Dave Brunker (@dbrunker) Says:

    Great post Richard, that’s really sad news though.

    It looks like the build has been replaced. Here’s the street view

    http://goo.gl/maps/Qx6tO

  10. Ian Says:

    It’s still there Dave. This is the view today:

    https://www.google.com/maps/@45.554479,-122.675513,3a,89.7y,88.33h,83.77t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sQdjoJom-E_xxKOz5E8L99w!2e0?hl=en

  11. joan Says:

    A very sad story about the proprietor. Looks like the kind of store I would have loved to get my school supplies or comics

    I love the revitalization of Mississippi Ave. Wonderful sights: the lines for the restaurants, children dancing in the pizza shop, a place to get any light bulb under the sun. Hope this street has great memories for those who love it.

  12. Janet Irwin Says:

    Does anyone else think the reflection in the window says “Mother’s ****board” Washboard? Was there a laundry across Mississippi from his store?

  13. Doug K Says:

    Too bad so many contractors these days can’t seem to figure out storefront windows. All they do is board up the opening, to stick smaller stock vinyl windows in, making it not look like a store any more, but a cheap house instead. And you have narrow strips of siding all around the windows.

    I think that’s a Mother’s Cupboard (?) Bread truck, parked at the curb, judging by the proximity to Carl in the reflection.

  14. Mike Says:

    Maybe Mother’s Breadboard?

  15. Nativepdx Says:

    Doug in many cases, the smaller windows are put in because of all the vandalism. Big picture windows run around $500.00 and you can’t keep turning it in to your insurance, so you eat it.

    It is even worst, if you have picture windows at a bus stop. Scratching into the windows and breakage is common around town.

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