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All About Fortuna, the Friendly City!

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Home > Album: Historic Images of Fortuna and the Area

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Fortuna Police Department, 19601405 viewsBack row: Mabel Westcott, Bill Baker, Wayne Veysey, Milt Bates, Dean Ball, Dick Scott, and Frank Pierce.
Front row: Jim Taylor, Dale Livingston, Randy Kamph, Ray Mills, Lee Stuck, Pride, and Jim Kennedy.
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Rohner House1266 viewsThe Rohner family home. Henry Rohner was a major benefactor to Fortuna. Rohner park is named after his family name. The Rohner home was located at 15th and Main Streets where Hunan's Restaurant is located today.
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A Very Early Picture of Fortuna1248 views
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Scotia Panorama, 19121168 viewsKnown in 1882 as Forestville, Scotia is one of the few company towns still in existence. By 1888 the mill was the largest producer of lumber in Humboldt County. The Pacific Lumber Company and its employees weathered economic downturns, fires, floods, supplied the lumber for rebuilding San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake, and World War I. At the time this photograph was taken the mill employed about a thousand people and its new mill was hailed as the largest, most modern and best equipped sawmill on the West Coast. On the right, in the distance and across the river you can see the town of Wildwood (Rio Dell today). Check out this photo as a 6297 x 990 high resolution download, 1.2MB.
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Joe Dungan's Shell Station, 8th and Main Streets1259 viewsThis gasoline station still exists at this location although today it no longer services automobiles, only dispenses gasoline. The building itself was removed with a small attendant kiosk put in place. The motel directly behind it still exists. At the beginning of the 1900's the grammar school was located here.
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Snow!1044 viewsAbout once in every ten years it snows in Fortuna and it's an event to be recorded by the camera. This was in 1946.
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Star Hotel, Corner of 11th and Main Streets1192 viewsLove that shadow effect on the "Star Hotel" lettering. And check out that period on the end! This two-story building was built in 1876 by W.J. McKenna, and was named after Andrew and Jacob Starrar of Mad River, who raised the elk that likely was Fortuna's meat supply at this time. There's a connection here to the Lost Dutchman's Mine, looks like Andrew may even have owned most of the town at one time and sold part of it to Henry Rohner, we're researching it, will post more info when we have it.
Main floor from left to right: Candy store, North Drugstore, Star Hotel lobby (the rooms were upstairs), Newell & McIntyre General Store. The Star Hotel was a popular destination in Fortuna from the 1880's to the 1950's and was known for its fine dining and friendly service. A journey from Eureka to Fortuna around the turn of the century was not just a little jaunt down the road. A trip would take hours and many times people from surrounding towns would spend the night not wanting to make the trip twice in one day. It was also used as a meeting and resting spot for those coming into town for the day. The hotel went out of business in the mid-1950's. This building is still being used today by a number of businesses.
From the Redwood Empire Association Booklet, early 1940s: "A popular hotel located in the center of Fortuna on the Redwood Highway. Steam heated and with all conveniences. A good coffee shop in connection catering to tourists and vacationists. Excellent steelhead fishing in the Eel River, nearby. Rates: $1.00 to $1.50 without bath; $1.75 to $2.50 with bath. Open all year."
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Swortzel residence995 views
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Men's Team1115 viewsEarly 1900s, baseball?
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SS Corona Aground, 19061302 viewsAground off Humboldt Bay. The Pacific Coast Steamship Co.'s steamship CORONA was launched August 4, 1888 from the yards of Neafie & Levy in Philadelphia. On October 27 of that year she left for San Francisco to enter the coastal steamer business, transporting goods and passengers along the Northern Pacific Coast. Another picture of her, in 1901, loading passengers in Seattle.
Photo courtesy of NOAA Photo Library
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84 Bandoliers Participate in the 1959 Fortuna Rodeo760 viewsEighty-four young bandsmen and twirlers made up the membership of the Music Mart Bandoliers, who performed during the 1959 Fortuna Rodeo and marched in the Rodeo parade. Preceding the parade, medals were awarded to superior twirlers and buglers. Twirlers included: Mary Liz Barnwell of Bridgeville, Kathy MacMillan of Rio Dell, Sandra Booth of Scotia, and Nita Barnwell of Bridgeville. Buglers awarded were Philip Nemanie of Fortuna, Sharon Hunsaker of Rio Dell, and Bill Baldwin of Alton. Lloyd Anderson directed the Bandoliers. In this picture the Bandoliers are assembled inside the Fortuna Music Mart store on Main Street. This photo comes from Nicky at Fortuna Music Mart, a better friend for musicians!
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A Very Early Picture of Fortuna1240 views
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Town School, Fortuna Elementary, 19491507 viewsLocated on L Street between 9th and 10th
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NWP Railroad Depot1358 views
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Truck tie-up2433 views150 Trucks carrying redwood logs, parked on the California Redwood Highway. Apparently this was some type of protest aimed at relaxing CHP restrictions, we'll try to find out more.
Art Ray picture
 
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