American Trona Corporation Building

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American Trona Corporation Building
American Trona Corporation Building is located in Los Angeles Metropolitan Area
American Trona Corporation Building
Location Pacific Avenue, San Pedro, Los Angeles, California
Coordinates 33°43′3″N 118°17′10″W / 33.71750°N 118.28611°W / 33.71750; -118.28611Coordinates: 33°43′3″N 118°17′10″W / 33.71750°N 118.28611°W / 33.71750; -118.28611
Built 1916
Governing body Air Force
NRHP Reference # 84000785
Added to NRHP August 30, 1984[1]

American Trona Corporation Building is an industrial building at the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro, California. It was built from 1916-1917 by the American Trona Corporation of California, to process and store salt potash from the company's mining facilities at Searles Lake in the Mojave Desert, near Trona in eastern San Bernardino County, California.



The building originally included crushers, separators and a network of conveyor belts to process the potash. The building has approximately 25,000 square feet (2,300 m2) of interior space on two floors and is said to be one of the largest still existing wood structural spaces in an industrial building on the West Coast. The foundation and interior walls of the first floor were built with reinforced concrete, and the entire upper section is made of wood.[2]

Due to advances in methods for separating potash, the plant was used for that purpose for only a short time, and there is some indication that the facility never went into full production.

Other uses

In 1920, the building was offered for sale at $200,000 to become part of a proposed submarine naval base at the Los Angeles Harbor.[3] The building was converted to use as a saw mill and warehouse during the 1920s and 1930s.

The building became part of the U.S. Army Fort MacArthur in 1942, and has remained under military ownership since that time. The ownership of Fort MacArthur transferred to the U.S. Air Force in 1982.[2]

The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2008-04-15. 
  2. ^ a b Flora Baker (June 1989). "The Trona Plant: The Raw Salt Storage at Fort MacArthur". The Shoreline. 
  3. ^ "Option on Property for Submarine Base: San Pedro Firm Will Offer Trona Buildings to City for $200,000". Los Angeles Times. 1920-01-25.