During the Great Depression, my grandfather, Henry Koch, lived at 3963 Northeast 14th Avenue. He would leave early in the morning and walk to the Wonder Bread Retail Outlet to purchase day-old bread and pastries. If he was late getting there, the shelves would be bare. Because of the reduced prices, that Retail Outlet was a Godsend to many people in the Albina District.
As a child, I lived directly across the street from the Wonder Bread Bakery, at 101 North Fremont Street, between Williams and Vancouver Avenues. I can remember being allowed to wander through that bakery and talk to the workers at the dough-mixing, baking oven, and packaging stations. Those men were very proud of their work and were more than willing to take the time to explain what was happening at each station. Can you imagine that freedom of entry and communication taking place today?
This story is condensed from a longer version written by Mel Cook and published on Steve Schreiber's volgagermans.net website.