Going to Evergreen Upholstery on Burwell Street is like
a trip back in time. Not only has the store seen Bremerton
through the decades — it’s been in the same spot since 1955 — but
owners James and Joanne Welch have a passion for the city and its
The Welches have long collected postcards and other photos of
the city. While interviewing them for a
story about their business and the
pending plan to build 48 apartments there, they let me take a
few pictures myself of their amazing collection. I am sharing them
with you now, alongside a more current photo of the place that was
The Manette Bridge: THEN
The Manette Bridge: NOW
The first Manette Bridge opened in 1930; here it is under
construction and, once built, is its toll booth — complete
with brick fireplace. The bridge was tolled twice; once at its
inception and later when the Warren Avenue Bridge opened.
The second Manette Bridge, also pictured, opened
Evergreen-Rotary Park: THEN
Evergreen-Rotary Park: NOW
Some of you have lived here long enough to remember the
pool at Evergreen-Rotary Park. But what about the pavilion? The
park originated at the northernmost section that exists now, so I
am guessing that’s where this pavilion was.
Also, something else I find interesting is how much the park has
grown over time. And by grown, I mean has protruded out and over
the Port Washington Narrows. If you notice, what we now call
Smith’s Cove used to be Smith’s Bay, according to this circa-1960
map. The waterline appears to come all the way up to Sheldon
Boulevard. My guess is that much fill went into the water but if
anyone has a more thorough explanation, I’d love to hear it.
Building 50: THEN
Building 50: NOW
The Navy built Building 50 within the first five years of
the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard’s existence, in 1896. In the
above photo, it’s the one on the right. It was first a
headquarters for shipyard commandants. The building moved
around until finally settling down in 2007 to house the
Puget Sound Navy
Museum, next to the shipyard and ferry.
The Elks Lodge: THEN
The Elks Lodge: NOW
Bremerton’s brick-lined Elks Lodge has long since been converted
to housing for the Max Hale Center. But I had no idea of the grand
staircase that once greeted visitors. Those stairs would be removed
when the Pay Less store moved in, occupying a white cube of a
building that still exists today.
You might also note that there was a
Methodist church where the Chase Bank building is now.
The Bremerton waterfront: THEN
The Bremerton waterfront: NOW
So much has changed. You’ll note the Kalakala ferry in the first
photo (bottom right); and in the second photo, taken on Second
Street, you’ll see Skippers Tavern.
You can read more about it here, in a Sun story by Travis
And those men walking in the street? They’re the Bremer
brothers, John and Ed, who reportedly always walked that closely
together with their business manager around town.
The third shot shows the old Bremerton ferry terminal while the
fourth, complete with a Blackberry Festival mural, shows the corner
where the Hampton Inn now sits.
The cash register at Evergreen Upholstery: THEN AND
Because some things never change. Be sure to read the note on
the front of the register.