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Warner & Tamble: 1942

Warner & Tamble: 1942

January 1942. "Memphis, Tennessee. Cars parked on Mississippi River levee." Medium format acetate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the Office of War Information. View full size.


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Re: Rear Window (on the view)

That's even the same boat in the 1970s picture, the William T. Warner.

How would you get rid of a levee?

DeeGee's comment about the building and levee parking still being there into the mid-1970's made me take another look. The levee is still there, just no longer used the way Warner & Tamble used it. I spotted this interesting survivor.

Rollin' on the River

This scene, in that era, was part of the history of labor-management relations in the United States. According to Michael Honey's 1993 book "Southern Labor and Black Civil Rights: Organizing Memphis Workers," in the late 30s and early 40s Russell Warner and G.H. Tamble, who had run liquor during Prohibition, used violence to keep waterfront workers at their company from unionizing (or exercising other legal rights, including wage and hour laws). They were especially brutal toward their company's black employees. After Robert Cotton filed a claim against the company for back wages, managers asked him to come to a "conference." He did, but he was never seen alive again. Other waterfront worksites were organized, but not Warner and Tamble. But from 1928 to 1973, Warner and Tamble did own a towboat formally known as the Mary Elizabeth, which is claimed to have been the inspiration for John Fogarty's "Proud Mary."

Rear Window (on the view)

The building and levee parking were still there at least into the mid-1970's.

Don't you see it???

Dude, I'm driving the dark colored coupe parked on the levee!

They took their Chevy to the levee

Not sure why so many cars would be needed in Memphis just as the United States enters World War II. Today, this area looks gentrified. If you look behind you, you'll see some old-style Mississippi excursion boats, I'm sure for charter.

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