Girls Playing on a Jungle Gym, circa 1944

Girls playing on a jungle gym, circa 1944. This image comes from a collection of Housing Authority images. The location is presumed to be in the University Park or Columbia Villa area.


City of Portland Archives, Oregon, A2001-025.732

City of Portland Archives, Oregon, A2001-025.732


View this image in Efiles by clicking here.

11 thoughts on “Girls Playing on a Jungle Gym, circa 1944

  1. I agree with Craig. There is lots of activity occurring on the bars and in the background. The expressions on the faces of the youngsters are fascinating along with the style of dress. Those girls are about to enter young womanhood, soon no more playing on the bars. Bars were a good place to develop muscles and self confidence along with a few scratches, bruises and maybe an occasional broken ankle.

  2. When we were kids we had all the fun stuff on playgrounds…… high metal slides,
    the “merry-go-round” thing where we all ran round and round and then jumped on,
    big swings that would go up high, teeter totters that we could adjust for weight, jungle gyms, etc. Laurelhurst Park in Portland was one of the best.
    Now all there are for our grandchldren & geat grandchildren are boring little plastic playgrounds only fit for a 3 yr old. No one older than that can even use the
    slow little plastic slides.

  3. There’s at least one positive change today compared to then – young women beyond these girls’ ages have much more encouragement to participate in individual and team sports, and they are healthier for it.

  4. Kevin, we called them monkey bars, too. I went to Glencoe School and there were two of these. One was known as the “Girls’ Bars” and the other was called the “Boys Bars.” A girl would never think of playing on the boys bars and vice-versa. Girls seemed to have the most fun on theirs by bending the backs of their knees around a bar and hanging upside-down. We boys, on the other hand, liked to get on the very top section and rock back and forth in unison to get the structure to shift a bit. Good thing it was solidly anchored.

  5. That structure at my school constructed the same, Over time those U-Bolted connection working loose, no doubt from the kids shaking the structure in unison,
    The joint would open up enough for a small finger to partially enter only to pinch when the joint closed up.
    I saw many kids jump off screaming to visit to the school nurse.

    Ahhh,,, The good ‘ol days….

  6. The girl in overalls seems quite happy. I wonder if her mode of dress was an issue in the WWII days.

    I remember one kid when I went to grade school in the 50s who had long hair (for those days) because he had bangs. He was looked down upon because we thought his parents were too poor to get a haircut for him.

Comments are closed.