23 thoughts on “Waterfront, 1941

  1. “Monroe & Crisell – Machinery and supplies for the dairy creamer and cheese factory”

    Portland Fish Co. – “Ocean Beauty Portland began as Portland Fish Company in 1910 on the water front of downtown Portland.”

  2. This view of the Portland waterfront is outstanding, very moody, and full of character. The parking lots have such a multitude of years, models, and make of cars; like a Jay Leno’s garage. I prefer the rough look of Portland of this time to the look of today.

    I would guesstimate this photo was taken in November 1941 possibly just weeks before Pearl Harbor. Some standing water from a previous rain remains in the parking lots. A heavier rain would not arrive until December 19, when 1.72″ would fall in the city.

  3. It looks like Oregon Milk Co. built a building between the one pictured in 1927 and the Storage building. However, from the painted logos in today’s photo, it appears they were out of business (or at least not downtown) by 1941. There is a note in a 1929 Nyssa newspaper, The Gate City Journal, that their condensary in Albany was sold to Borden.

  4. Monroe & Crisell dealers and manufactures of dairy equipment in June 1930 moved to a leased building at Front & Pine from their previous location at 91 Front. Monroe & Crisell moved once again in June of 1935 when the purchased a building at 135 NW Park..

  5. Susan the closed bridge is the 1905 Morrison bridge, with the next being the Hawthorne, and the farthest being the Ross Island bridge.

  6. Pedestrians on the bridge, pigeons atop the buildings, mooring cleats that are still there today. Nearby, ship builder Henry Kaiser is drawing up plans for Vanport–a vital contributor to World War II and exceptional experiment in diversity. The Oregonians in hidden in this photo–like all Americans who survived the Great Depression only to face Global Fascism–will endure the gloom, loss, and death. A president will encourage them around their fireside radios. They become hardened, determined, resolute, and, despite our flaws, united in purpose and patriotism. They win the war, preserve world peace, and eventually earn the moniker, “America’s Greatest Generation”.

  7. Hard to believe maybe for those who didn’t live thru this era but in just a few years a lot of these cars depicted here are going to be available for prices in the the $10- $ 25 range, most going to Alaska Junk or some other scrapper for five bucks. Through the 50’s they were almost giving them away. In 1952 I bought my first car, a absolute mint 1932 Chevy 5 window coupe with wire wheels, two spares, one in each front fender, a working radio and engine that ran like a Swiss watch from a buddy (still alive) for $15.00 I earned from my Sunday job at a Hancock station at NE 73rd and Halsey. We both wish we had that car back. Oh well.

  8. Where are all the car identifiers today?
    Look at that trove!

    I want to know about that sweet little coupe at lower left, with the hood ornament.

  9. Were those 1930s cars all gray and black like now? Or were there all the colors of the rainbow like in the 1970s and 80s?

  10. Dave, I think that’s a 1937 Ford Business Coupe.
    A good number of these cars must’ve belonged to the salesmen; there are a number of Chevy and Ford business coupes from 1934-1940 represented here

  11. Susan I looked at some old Chevy, Ford, and Plymouth brochures for the late 1930’s and early 1940’s and the did offer different colors such as Red, Tan, Blue, Black, Green and Grey.

  12. Thanks Dennis. I remember about 1948 when our Dad turned in a 1938ish black round top coupe like those pictured and brought home a much sleeker tan or lite blue Chevy. It was a big thing to this very excited little girl.

  13. This is likely documenting the condition of the waterfront prior to all of the buildings shown here bein razed for construction of Harbor Drive.

  14. I’m not sure why I got downvotes for stating a historical fact on a history blog. While I have an undeniable love for Portland’s remaining historical buildings, especially those with cast iron storefronts, the fact is that all of the buildings shown above were demolished in 1941 to make way for Harbor Drive.

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