This old photo looking north on downtown Taylor Street from Union Wharf is obviously before my time. It has lost a bit of detail through copying along the way, but major landmarks remain …
This old photo looking north on downtown Taylor Street from Union Wharf is obviously before my time. It has lost a bit of detail through copying along the way, but major landmarks remain identifiable. I have found it on line identified by some uninformed individual as “Water Street,” illustrating how assumptions by the ignorant can screw up history.
The exact date is not known but Taylor Street appears planked all the way to Water, and the original version of the Central Hotel is seen at left. There is the spire on the Hastings Building at downtown’s main intersection—and also the southeast corner of the Mt. Baker Block, catty-corner across the intersection. The original Central Hotel appears to be intact and dominating the near background at left. it was destroyed by fire in the fall of 1926 when a major portion of the population was off to watch the high school football game at the old athletic field at what now the corner of the local golf course at 19th St. and San Juan Ave. In the far background at center is St. Mary’s Star of the Sea church on Franklin Street.
A business offering fish and ice can readily be made out at left. I don’t know what all survived the Central Hotel fire, but about there on the foreground side was located the old Pacific Bar of the ‘90s. I can remember a day about 1935 when a visiting uncle took me along when he went downtown for a beer—sat me at the bar and ordered me a carbonated soda pop that must have been one of the earliest versions of Coca Cola. It was right about that location.
Across the street I can make out a sign reading “tobacco, cigars . . .” That would be the old cigar and shoe-shine shop operated in earlier years by Frank (Francesco) Moraldo after moving across the street from his original location in front of the Central Hotel. When I was in high school, a man we knew only as “Gabe” still had a shoe shine stand there—and sold some sort of confections that lured my humble small “gang” there on occasion.
A photo of Frank Moraldo and his original cigar shop will be found in my second volume of local history.
The nearest photo at right was the location of the Palms Cafe in later years.
That’s all I know.