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Astoria in Clatsop County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
 

A Waterfront at Work

 
 
A Waterfront at Work Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
1. A Waterfront at Work Marker
Inscription.
Before the fire of 1922, much of downtown Astoria was built on pilings over the river. People built out from the original hilly shoreline, creating a level commercial district with access to the water.

Every type of business might be located over the river: hotels and taverns, churches and fish canneries, lumberyards, and a railroad depot.

Naturally, the riverfront was — and is — the workplace for people in the maritime trades. Official business like customs, public health, and pilotage; transportation via ferry, launch, and steamboats; loading and unloading ship cargoes; boatbuilding, shipbuilding, and other maritime enterprises dominated the waterfront.
 
Erected by City of Astoria.
 
Location. 46° 11.379′ N, 123° 49.572′ W. Marker is in Astoria, Oregon, in Clatsop County. Marker can be reached from East Columbia River Highway (U.S. 30) west of 16th Street, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is located along the Astoria Riverwalk, north of the highway, overlooking the Columbia River, west of 16th Street. Marker is at or near this postal address: Astoria Riverwalk, Astoria OR 97103, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker.
Marker detail: <i>Ernest H. Meyer</i> Christening image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
2. Marker detail: Ernest H. Meyer Christening
Miss Gertrude Chochrane poses before christening the wooden steam schooner Ernest H. Meyer on January 20, 1917 at the Wilson Bros. Shipyard on Young’s Bay
Into the Unknown (within shouting distance of this marker); A Great Artery of Transportation (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Ranald MacDonald (about 600 feet away); Fort Astoria (about 600 feet away); Site of Original Settlement of Astoria (about 600 feet away); 14th Street Ferry Slip (about 600 feet away); Gimre's Shoe Store (about 700 feet away); Columbia River Tugs And Towboats (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Astoria.
 
Also see . . .
1. Astoria Waterfront Fires.
In 1883, and again in 1922, downtown Astoria was devastated by fire, partly because it was mostly wood and entirely raised off the marshy ground on pilings. Even after the first fire, the same format was used, and the second time around the flames spread quickly again, as collapsing streets took out the water system. Frantic citizens resorted to dynamite, blowing up entire buildings to stop the fire from going further. (Submitted on January 25, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Astoria and Columbia River Railroad.
In 1883, with the coming of the transcontinental railroad to the West, Astoria assumed that they would be connected to the rest of the nation. By the time the Northern Pacific reached Portland, however, the railroad was financially overextended and stopped fifty-eight miles short, at Goble, effectively making Portland the western
Marker detail: Astoria & Columbia River Railroad image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
3. Marker detail: Astoria & Columbia River Railroad
In 1898, the railroad arrived along Astoria's waterfront, and residents gained a new way to travel and ship goods. Here, an Astoria & Columbia River Line train meets the river steamers Telephone and Bailey Gatzert, in about 1899 or 1900. Tourist trade from Portland to the coastal resorts proved to be a mainstay of the A&CR. The railroad was immediately popular with Portlanders who sought to escape the summer heat.
terminus of the line. During the 1890s, Astoria residents heaped subsidy upon subsidy on the promise of a railroad, offering thousands of acres of prime real estate plus $300,000 to lure an investor to bring a line to the town. Finally, the Astoria and Columbia River Railroad (A&CR) line was completed in May 1898. (Submitted on January 25, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. DisastersIndustry & CommerceMan-Made FeaturesWaterways & Vessels
 
Marker detail: Shipbuilders image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
4. Marker detail: Shipbuilders
A crew of shipbuilders work on the Suisun at Wilson Bros. Shipyard in Astoria. Hundreds of local men worked at wooden ship-and-boat-building from before 1900 through the 1970s. Today, skilled workers repair boats at yard along nearby rivers.
Marker detail: Methodist Church image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
5. Marker detail: Methodist Church
The Methodist church, built around 1903, was constructed on pilings like many other waterfront buildings. This site is now located between 11th and 12th on Duane Street.
A Waterfront at Work Marker (<i>wide view looking north; Columbia River in background</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2015
6. A Waterfront at Work Marker (wide view looking north; Columbia River in background)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 27, 2018. This page originally submitted on January 24, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 81 times since then. Photos:   1. submitted on January 24, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on January 25, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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