I interviewed John Koep in 1980 for the documentary, “Mystery of Half Moon Bay”–here’s some of what he told me then.
John’s father came to the Coastside in the early 1940s. “Came for the shark business. There was a big boom during the war.” The government “wanted shark livers for the Vitamin A. Big boom. Made good money.”
He said that the fish was caught in front of the harbor. “Those days were the good ones.”
Also good was the albacore until it dropped in price. Salmon remained “consistent and the sardine business was good int he 1940s. The town of Princeton was bigger with two canneries, three piers. Everybody worked at the canneries. There was a small cannery row. Nerli’s restaurant, Patroni’s, rooms upstairs. You get anything you wanted in Princeton.”‘
…more to come..