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Photo of Commodore's Point. Today, the same warehouses still stand as a part of the North Florida Shipyards. I can smell it all now, from the sharp, clean redolence of pine lumber and gum rosin loading at Commodore's Point to the foul stench of guano ships unloading at McGiffin's docks, and the acrid fumes of coal-fueled steam locomotives switching under the Broad Street viaduct.
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Image of the railyard from the Broad Street viaduct. I don't know how they are going to reproduce it for a museum, but it can be done because the Coca Cola exhibit at the most recent New York World's fair took us around the world through the scents of jungles and teeming cities in 30 minutes. I'd start eastward from Broad Street past the wholesale produce markets with the scent of onions in crocus sacks over-riding the fragrance of fresh vegetables, then to the docks beyond where banana boats were unloading perfumed cargoes.
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Photo of a shipment of potatoes being stored inside of a waterfront warehouse. On, then across the street to the Casino theater, from which the fried onions at the hot dog and hamburger stand at the entrance beckoned with as much allure as the shootem-up advertised on the marquis. Inside, admission 10 cents, hawkers sold peanuts, popcorn, candy up and down the aisle without disturbing anyone's reading of the silent movie titles. (You didn't sit too far down front, unless you didn't mind fat rats darting out of the orchestra pit over your feet to forage for dropped tidbits.) One the same side of the street was Osky's, a souvenir shop whose tanks of baby alligators and turtles gave an odor all their own to mingle with burning incense. Back, then, to the south side of the street past Hubbard's hardware store, where an unsold grindstone had stood so long out front that the top side of it had been worn flat by people pausing to sharpen pocket knives.
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Hubbard's Hardware on Bay Street. This is the present site of the MODIS Tower. The ferry slip at the foot of Main Street was an entryway to a clean breathe of fresh air on the Southside, but first you had to clear the fetid stench of fish and floating oil from the shoreline flushed with the sewage of a thriving city.
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The ferry slip can be seen from the intersection of Main and Bay Streets. That odor was stronger as you went eastward on the waterfront past the Red Star market where, for a nickel, you could get a couple of cold wieners to munch out behind where Negroes caught catfish from a rickety dock.
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A bartender inside of the Red Star market. Nearby was Martin's seed and feed store, with puppies always in the window, and a stock of merchandise that put a country boy in mind of the prairie far away. Seeds smell the same everywhere. There was the National Lunch, all white and clean, and through the open door drifted the savory fragrance of the specialty - a big bowl of beef stew, 20 cents.