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Reliable Hams: 1943

Reliable Hams: 1943

April 1943. "Baltimore, Maryland. Street under viaduct." Where the manufacturing is Dependable and the hams are Reliable. Photo by Marjory Collins for the Office of War Information. View full size.


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As soon as I saw the platform I remembered a similar platform not far from my childhood home.

I know for certain (cuz Momma told me) it was used for aircraft spotting during WWII. The large buiding below our platform was originally a Streetcar Barn (13 and 15 lines) for the Baltimore Transit Company at North Avenue and Belair Road.

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The Platform

Given the year, the platform would be the perfect spot for the men and women of the Civil Defense to keep watch for enemy aircraft.

History of Kingan

While most of us can remember the great meatpackers of the past, Swift, Armour, Cudahy, Hormel, Kingan was name name I did not know. Yet it was one of the top 10 meatpackers.

Possible Platform Purpose

It's the right size for a water tank.

The Tower

The photo was taken in the dark days of WWII, and the wooden structure looks much newer than everything else around it. I wonder if the srtucture was a Civil Defense spotting tower for use by an Air Raid Warden?

Platform use

That platform looks like a location for a rooftop tank of some sort like a water tank for fire sprinkler systems.

Art it is

In fact, it is a stunning composition, by an obviously gifted photographer. It reminds me of the Mark Twain quote, "Fiction is obliged to stick to the possibilities. Truth isn't."

Control Tower

I'm guessing the platform above the Reliable Ham factory is a control tower. You know--for when pigs fly.

Artisanal Hams

Cured on our exclusive rooftop sun deck.

Observation Platform

Anyone know the purpose of the sturdy observation platform? Is there a nice view from that location? Some other purpose?

Reliable Hams

The only kind I buy. I hate hams that are always in the shop for repair. Must be these guys:


An article found online put the address of Kinghan's Reliable Hams at 355 Guilford Ave. in Baltimore. That location is now a parking garage:

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That's what it is.

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