George Nelson was a Seattle contractor who was hired by the city for Public Works projects, including the second phase of the Denny Hill regrade beginning in 1928.
Nelson's contracting business is first listed in city directories beginning in 1925: from 1925 to 1928 as Nelson and Pederson; in 1929 as George Nelson & Co.; in 1930 under Nelson's name as "General Contractor"; and from 1935 through the early 1940s as "Cities Contracting Co." Nelson's wife Agnes is listed as George Nelson's widow beginning with the 1966 directory.
Photographs of contracting jobs performed by George Nelson, probably all Public Works projects for the Seattle Engineering Department, from circa 1925-1930. The majority of the collection depicts three projects: the construction of a truck sewer and subsewers as part of the improvements along Oregon Street; the construction of a trunk sewer at West Hanford Street; and the final phase of the Denny Hill regrade. Other images depict construction equipment, particularly the Lorain L75 Electric Shovel produced by Thew Shovels in Lorain, Ohio.
Alternative Forms Available :
View selections from the collection in digital format here or by clicking on the camera icons in the inventory.Restrictions on Access :
The collection is open to the public by appointment.Restrictions on Use :
The Museum of History & Industry is the owner of the materials in the Sophie Frye Bass Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from MOHAI before any reproduction use. The museum does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.Preferred Citation :
George Nelson Photograph Collection , Museum of History & Industry, Seattle
Acquisition Information :
Gift of Agnes Nelson (George Nelson's wife) in October 1968.Processing Note :
The collection was arranged into series based on number and letter markings on the photos, which revealed that each group depicted a particular project. Photographs were grouped by markings of "A," "B," and "C" and sequentially by number within each group. Some unmarked photographs were obviously part of one of these groups and were added to the sequence. Other unmarked photographs comprise the "Miscellaneous" series.Related Materials :
MOHAI accession no. 1969.4658 contains films from the collection of George Nelson, documenting the Denny Regrade, 1929-1930.
Detailed Description of the Collection
The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.
7.5 x 9. 5
This series consists of 18 photographs on linen backing which
appear to have been removed from a two ring binder. They are numbered by hand
in black ink on the upper left corner of the page with sequential numbers
followed by "A."
The photographs document construction of a concrete sewer pipe along Oregon Street in Seattle. This may have been part of the 1925 Local Improvement District No. 3795 project for the improvement of Oregon Street by construction of a trunk sewer and subsewers.
Group of 18 photographs, all but one of which are duplicates from
the "Oregon Street Sewer" series. Photos are also mounted on linen backing and
hole punched for two ring binder. Each is stamped on verso as "Defendant's
Exhibit," filed April 5, 1926. The case name is handwritten as "A.C. Goering
(plaintiff) vs. Hans Pederson Const. Co. et al" and the photographs are stamped
"Nelson and Pederson."
The single photo that is not a duplicate is listed as number 18 in the Oregon Street Sewer series.
These photographs document the construction of a sewer tunnel along West Hanford Street, Seattle. Nelson was apparently hired to work on the Local Improvement District No. 4751 project, which specified the improvement of West Hanford Street and other streets through construction of a trunk sewer. Most of the photographs are captioned on front "George Nelson and Co." and "West Hanford St. L.I.D. 4751."
The Board of Public Works awarded George Nelson & Company the contract for the second and final phase of the regrading of Denny Hill in 1928-1930. Unlike the first regrade, this project made use of belt conveyors to move material from the site out to Elliott Bay. An electric shovel removed dirt from the hill and dropped it into a hopper, which in turn fed the material onto the movable belt conveyor to self dumping scows at the pier.
This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.