Historic Hood River
SS Alameda at Seattle Pier, 1917
In the early twentieth century Alaska held a strong allure for the young men of Hood River. Both Alva Day and Will Langille made that journey. Mr. Day created a compelling document of his excursion which we’ll follow for a few days. It also gives me a chance to let you know we’re making good progress digitizing the approximately 2700 Alva Day negatives in our collection. Thanks to the generous response to my earlier appeal, we have the materials we need to process and preserve these negatives.
Like all good sea tales, Alva Day’s adventure began on the docks. Here we see the steamship SS Alameda at a Seattle pier on March 21, 1917, building up a head of steam.
The SS Alameda was built at a Philadelphia shipyard in 1883, and plied the waters of the Pacific until it burned at a pier in 1931. Many of its long years of service were spent along the coast of Alaska. It appears in numerous photos in Alaska state archives. I even ran across a breakfast menu: chilled Casaba melon with rhubarb sauce, grape nuts, fried smelt with lemon butter, and an oyster omelet were among the offerings.
I wonder about the man who seems to be bent over the ship’s railing even before they left the dock.