New Bedford in Bristol County, Massachusetts — The American Northeast (New England)
Making Room-Johnny Cake Hill
New Bedford Whaling National Historic Park
— National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
All of the buildings featured in this 1907 photograph--on what then was called Bethel Street—stood here and catered to roving seamen.
The “floating population” of this whaling town—those citizens going to sea or returning from sea—had to sleep somewhere. Most rested their heads in the boardinghouses that sprang up near the waterfront, like those pictured here.
The New Bedford “Whaling Museum” sits at the top of the hill today. With the construction of the whaling museum’s building here in 1915 most of the former seamen’s services began to vanish. The street was renamed Johnny Cake Hill shortly after the whaling museum was built. The name “Johnny Cake” honors a regional fare of cornmeal pancakes, made originally from maize and most likely, taught to early settlers by American Indians.
Erected by National Park Service.
Location. 41° 38.071′ N, 70° 55.407′ W. Marker is in New Bedford, Massachusetts, in Bristol County. Marker is on Union Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford MA 02740, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Captain Paul Cuffe (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Captain Paul Cuffe (a few steps from this marker); Twentieth-Century Whaling (a few steps from this marker); Trial by Fire (a few steps from this marker); A Tribute of Respect to Enterprising Whalemen (within shouting distance of this marker); The Seamen's Bethel (within shouting distance of this marker); Viking (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Seamen’s Bethel (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New Bedford.
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Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 4, 2013, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 492 times since then. Last updated on September 26, 2014, by Byron Hooks of Sandy Springs, Georgia. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 4, 2013, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. 5, 6, 7. submitted on August 3, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.