14 thoughts on “SE Water Avenue, 1948

  1. Each woman has a different expression on her face. The one one the left does not seem to be happy with her current situation.

  2. The water was deep enough to float those very large 2 story apt. buildings off their moorings and some moved around. The first wall of water was over 20 ft. I was in the theater when the first dike broke.

  3. My dad was a driver for Portland, Pendleton Freightlines at the time of the flood working out of the old Eastside Truck Terminal just south of this photo location My dad had a row boat about the size of the one pictured and when the water started rising (Saturday) the company called in as many of the employees as they could reach to come in and help evacuate the equipment and move everything they could to the upper floor. The basement was already flooded by that time. They asked my dad to bring his boat and he launched it from SE 2nd and Madison. After they had gotten just about as much done as was possible the water was already on the freight dock. The owner, Herman Sites showed up with a couple of cases of Oly and the gang started in on the beer. By the time the old man got back to the car the water was up over the running boards of his 39 Ford so he moved it further up the street and then he and two of his buddies got out their fishing poles and they started trolling up and down SE 2nd and the old man hooked a 9 pound steelhead at 2nd and Yamhill. They were joined on the water by several other boats and they had a regular fishing derby.

    I myself later, in the early 60s worked out of that same old terminal and by that time the basement was completely given over to mold and a colony of huge Norwegian wharf rats.

    That whole area of the waterfront was populated by those rats and the young lady with the frown is likely as not contemplating that fact as they are on their way to or from a similar rescue mission in a building that has lost power and light.

  4. The warehouse across Water Ave belonged to Cudahy Packing, and the tractor in front of the building is one of Pierce Freightlines “city goats” who shared dockspace with Portland Pendleton on the west end. The dock behind was ONC Motorfreight until they moved to Swan Island. Both carriers are long gone with deregulation.

  5. Positive Identification. The young women at the oars has been identified as Maxine Call, daughter of Bob Call who were both employed by Pierce Auto Freight in Portland at the time of this photo. The identification was made by her brother Bill Call to me. Bill Call was also an employee of Pierce at the time who later went on to purchase Reddaway Truck Line a little Oregon City cartage company and built it into a large multi state international carrier that he sold to TNT. I had thought she looked familiar and so I inquired of Bill. She later went on to marry a friend of mine, Gus Whitehead and I was not introduced to her until some 30 years after the date of this photo. In common with every one else in this tale Gus also was employed at one time by Pierce including myself. Bill Call holds out some hope that we may yet ID the other two ladies in the boat. Bill Call himself is, in addition, a decorated, and prominent Marine Corps Veteran of both Iwo Jima and the Chosin Reservoir with a personal museum filling several buildings known as Bill’s Place in Clackamas OR with numerous exhibits dedicated to The Marine Corps, early Oregon Trucking and autos of the 20’s,30’s and 40’s. Tours by appointment.

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