Quinnipiac Terrace, New Haven, Connecticut, 1942

1942 — Quinnipiac Terrace, New Haven, Connecticut. What an absolutely gorgeous photo… a picture perfect life moment, don’t you think? This photo makes me So Happy.
.Above is mom, close by.

And above, the playground where little miss surely bruised some knees. I did not have time to go nose around the web to check my thesis, but I bet this was defense worker housing. During World War II, there were material shortages and rationing – so as far as I know, the only (or at least, vast majority of) housing being built was for defense workers.

These photos are from the Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, Gottscho-Schleisner Collection [reproduction number, e.g., LC-G612-T-45094]
It’s the last blast of summer, I’m taking the weekend off and will be back… Tuesday morning, I think. Have a safe and happy weekend, all.

  1. pat aiello says:

    hi paul we must have met 1000 times i did all the things you mentioned i lived at 127 downing street untill1953 i live on barnaget bay on the jersey shore and never caught crabs like we did on the quinnipiac river

  2. pat aiello says:

    ilived at 127 downing street across the street from clinton ave school park in the 1940s till 1953 spent most of my time playing in the quinnipiac river on front street the photos of the kitchen bring back fond memories my dad worked on constructing those buildings our original apartment was 11 english street till my brother was born his name is charles my sister is phyllis i am on face book i would like to hear from some one that n
    knew us face book name is pasquale aiello

    1. Paul Murphy says:

      Wow! The photos brought back fond memories of my childhood from 1942 to 1961. Was talking with a young coworker about the projects and growing up there. Of course he went on line and found these photos. The outdoor playground that is pictured with the social hall in the background was our racetrack on our bicycles and skateboards made out of 2×4, roller skate wheels and peach basket with wood handles for steering. The center of the playground had a rectangular tapered area with a drain in the middle with a large sprinkler head at each end of the of the rectangular area. In the summer days the maintainance workers would turn on the sprinklers and we would have a ball. We would also gather newspapers and cover the drain in the middle to create a shallow but fun “swimming area”. Oh the good old days.
      The Quinnipiac River (Dovers beach we called it – don’t know why) is where I spent many a day crabbing down by the city dump near the Middletown Avenue bridge. Caught many big and double deckers. My family didn’t eat them so I gave them away to my Italian friends parents for good ole crab sauce and pasta. Oh the good old days.
      Did the same as most kids then – went up the hill (by the way, I lived at 4 Bailey Street on the corner with Downing Street) to school at Clinton Avenue and then to Fair Haven Junior High and Wilbur Cross after that.
      I Google that area and its all changed now. Clinton Park looks smaller than I remember and the school is much bigger.
      Well – enough said – I could go on forever but……….

      1. pat aiello says:

        hi paul we must have seem each other a 1000 times all the things you spoke about i did you must have gone to clinton ave school my teachers were mrs grady mrs mcgovern mrs mildred mrs kennedy i lived at 127 downing street 1 half block from you i live on the water down the jersey shore and never caught crabs like we did on the quinnipiac theater remember the peaquat theater .25 c got us an admission plus a candy bar or 2

  3. Mholoth says:

    The outside picture looks just like the public housing in Hammond, IN called “Columbia Center” that were used for the arsenal that used to be there, as well has the old “Lee Village” at Ft. Campbell, KY. I tried to find a picture of Lee Village but they have been refurbished so many times I can’t tell which buildings they are. In the late 80’s early 90’s they stucco’d Lee Village and put copper awnings over some of the windows, but the interior walls were still cinder block and the sole bathroom was upstairs. Columbia Center hasn’t changed at all.

  4. midmodms says:

    The neighborhoods south of Seattle are full of still existing and lived-in houses from that era, built to house workers making planes at Boeing. A friend of mine bought one a few years ago; it had the tiniest kitchen.

  5. Happy Daze says:

    There were several blocks of houses in the neighborhood I grew up in that were built in 1942. The rule was that if construction had started on a house, the builder was exempt from rationing, and was allowed to buy enough materials to finish the house. As war appeared imminent in December 1941, the builder in my neighborhood expected the rationing of building materials. He had his crews work night and day to pour as many foundations as possible. When rationing took effect, all of his lots had houses that were “under construction”, so he was able to purchase as many materials as he needed.

  6. Eartha says:

    These photos are terrific. That kitchen is as neat as a pin! I’d love to know what colors the flooring was.

    Interesting discussion the birds too. Of course, most folks know that gas leaks will kill birds (i.e. the canaries taken into coal mines) but once, I had two hamsters who were left in my childhood room when some men came to blow insulation into the attic through my closet attic access. The hamsters ended up dying from the insulation in the air. Strange thing to bring up but I guess it’s always good to consider what our pets might be breathing in or ingesting when we do things around the house. Cleaners….toxic fumes…floor waxes… Okay, I’ll stop but would like to dedicate this comment to my late hamsters, Cleo and Clyde. : )

  7. Gavin Hastings says:

    Pam, Remember once you asked about a deep kitchen sink? Notice the wringer washer?
    I think that is a double sink with a lid over the deep one in the photo.
    With such a washer, you began with hot water and “whites”, pumped the water into the “set tub” sink, re-used the soap-y water (now cooler) for “colored”. Rinsed both loads, sent them through the wringer, and out onto the line. What a drudge!
    It wasn’t until the 1950’s that Automatic Washing Machines became the norm, and why it was previously called “washday”….it took that long.

    Have a nice weekend.

    1. Gavin Hastings says:

      If you GoogleEarth these apartments, they are still there, but seem to have been given peaked roofs and vinyl siding in the 1980’s

    2. pam kueber says:

      Yes, Gavin, I have read a few books chronicling domestic history — and wash day was traditionally despised the most. Ummmm, I think clothes didn’t get washed so often as a result….

    3. Sabrina says:

      I was going to point out the wringer washer myself! My DH’s grandmother tells us about doing her laundry in one of these… and washing the cloth diapers in them. When she heard we were going to use cloth diapers, she was horrified! She remembers washing them with bleach in one of these wringer washers, boiling them, hanging them to dry, and ironing them. (They really were into sterilization in those days! Bleaching, boiling, sunning, AND ironing? Wow!). She didn’t fully realize that all we needed to do these days is dump them in the washer, add some detergent, and push some buttons, then stick them in the dryer on hot when they’re done. Sometimes technology really does improve lives…

  8. lady brett says:

    our house and at least one or two others nearby (the ones i’ve been able to snoop on while they’re up for sale) were built in ’42, which seemed pretty unusual to me. i wonder if they are flukes, or if there was some history here that i’m unaware of that made the neighborhood grow so much at that time.

  9. Shane Walp says:

    I dig old daily life pictures like this. And automotive assembly line pics from the old days! There’s a house just up the street from me that was for sale a few months ago that I nosed around (everytime a house goes on the market around me I get all over it and IN it if possible). I used the Franklin Cty Auditor’s website for info on it, and found it was built in 1942. I thought “Wow, what a rarity!”

  10. Denise says:

    These are marvelous Pam! I remember even into the early to mid fifties… people still kept a bird in the kitchen by a window. The bird would succumb to gas or any hazardous fumes well before a human would.

    1. Dave says:

      I learned that the hard way. I used to live in an apartment with an old stove, the pilot lights were always on and kept that area of the kitchen warm. The building had steam heat, and the radiators would kick on and roast the apartment for about an hour at 5 in the morning, noon, 7pm and 11 at night. During the in between time it would get cold and I was worried that my parakeet would get cold, so I put his cage nearer to the stove to keep warm. I didn’t even think about the pilot blowing out. Everything went well for a few months until, I came home one day to find a dead bird. I smelled the gas, lit the pilot and threw out the poor bird. I didn’t even think that when I placed his cage where I did that I was signing his death warrant.

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