Glenn Robert Lym Architect AIA/PhD

HERE6 Video Podcast:

Scapegoat - the 1871-1906

San Francisco City Hall

During the 1860’s, the Bay Area was hit by major earthquakes that damaged its city offices, then centered around Portsmouth Square.  Beginning in 1871, after the Civil War, San Francisco replaced those offices with a major new city hall located in what previously had been the outskirts of town. 

 This was a period in which it appears an idealistic conception of city government held sway.  San Francisco was building a new, monument for itself. 

An international design competition was held for its design, won by architect Augustus Laver. Its public entrance was built on axis with the emerging, working-class South of Market district, which it opened up to and towered over.

A carriage entrance to the north was provided for the upper classes on Nob Hill and along Van Ness Avenue. Yet a worker food riot at its groundbreaking ceremony foretold the intense class and race struggles that would engulf the city several years later and again at the turn of the century.

When completed in the 1890’s, city hall was San Francisco’s grandest  building.

City hall's collapse during the 1906 earthquake and fire storm was attributed to shoddy construction, rooted in political corruption.  But an examination of the 1906 earthquake damage suggests otherwise.  It appears that this city hall became a scapegoat in a political coup d’état .

HERE6 - Scapegoat: the 1871-1906 San Francisco City Hall  is 52 minutes long and was written, filmed and edited in 2010 through 2014.

The controls for the video below are along the bottom. Clicking the diagonal arrow on the lower right expands the video fullscreen. Press the "escape" to exit fullscreen mode.

You can download a full version of HERE5 and subscribe to all current and future episodes of HERE for free by clicking on the iTunes button below.

C r e d i t s

                       Thanks to Chris Carlsson of ShapingSF; Paul V. Turner, Professor Emeritus, Dept of Art & Art History, Stanford University; Mindy Lym; and Amnon Ben-Paiz.



R e f e r e n c e s

James Beach Alexander & James Lee Heig San Francisco: Building the Dream City Scottwall Associates 2002

Basic Research Associates "San Francisco Main Library Project: Archeological Monitoring and Architectural Documentation.  Site of the Former City hall completed in 1897" Volumes 1 & 2 of 2 - Private Report housed in the History Room, 6th Floor, San Francisco Main Library, December 1994

Matthew Brady "The Old Town: A Morbid City Hall" San Francisco Independent  January 26 1993 pg 12E

Matthew Brady "The Old Town: A City Hall Dungeon" San Francisco Independent December 20 1994 

Gray Brechin ”Forming the Modern City: Gold Rush, Beaux Arts and the Pan Pacific Exposition" Lecture September 27 2010

Gray Brechin Imperial San Francisco: Urban Power, Earthly Ruin University of California Press, Berkeley 1999 

Gray Brechin "Importance of the Palace of Fine Arts"  http://www.maybeck.org/gray1.html

Gray Brechin ”Time in the Palace: Bernard Maybeck’s Palace of Fine Arts in Context” Lecture Celebrating the 150th Year of Bay Area Architect Bernard Maybeck February 28 2012

Chris Carlsson “SF Labor History” Bike History Tour July 10 2010 

Chris Carlsson “The Workingmen’s Party & The Denis Kearney Agitation” 1995  http://www.foundsf.org/index.php?title=The_Workingmen’s_Party_%26_The_Dennis_Kearney_Agitation

Jonathan Farrell  “Old City Hall reveals its history of graft amid 1906 Quake ruins”, October 4 2012  http://digitaljournal.com/article/334067

http://foundSF.org

Philip L. Fradkin The Great Earthquake and Firestorms of 1906 University of California Press 2005 

Glady Hansen & Emmet Condon Denial of Disaster: The Untold Story and Photographs of the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire of 1906 Cameron and Company 1989 

Harold Kirker California's Architectural Frontier: Style and Tradition in the Nineteenth Century Peregrine Smith 1986

Jack London "South of the Slot" Saturday Evening Post May 1909

Mary P. Ryan "A Laudable Pride in the Whole of Us: City Halls and Civic Materialism" American History Review October 2000 pg 1131-1170

Frank Soulé, John H Gihon & James Nisbet The Annals of San Francisco D. Appelton & Co NYC 1860

Stephen Tobriner Bracing For Disaster: Earthquake-Resistant Architecture and Engineering in San Francisco 1839-1933 Heyday Books/Bancroft Library University of California Berkeley 2006

.     .     .     .     .     .

"Albany, NY Fire Destroys State Capital Building, March 1911" GenDisasters: Events That Touched Our Ancestors' Lives  http://www3.gendisasters.com/new-york/4275/albany,-ny-fire-destroys-state-capitol-building,-mar-1911

"Augustus Laver" Dictionary of Canadian Biography  http://biographi.ca/en/bio/laver_augustus_12E.html

"City Hall Ruins are Sold for $2300" San Francisco Examiner Aug 9, 1916

"Dig for Library, Find City Hall" San Francisco Examiner July 20, 1992

"Old Hall of Records is Sold for $5500" San Francisco Examiner Sept 21, 1916

"New City Hall" Illustrated Press February 1874 vol 2 no 2

"The New City Hall and Tower" San Francisco Newsletter August 5 1893  www.sfmusuem.org/hist5/laver.html

"San Francisco City Hall"  http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h2710.html

"Washington's Birthday, the 140th Anniversary, the Celebration in San Francisco. Laying the Corner Stone of City Hall" The Daily Evening Bulletin Second Edition, Thursday Evening, February 22, 1872

"20 Coffins Float in Water Filled Cellar" San Francisco Call April 27, 1908

"1870-State Capital, Albany, New York" archiseek  http://two.archiseek.com/2009/1870-state-capitol-albany-new-york/


 

F i l m & V i d e o

Glenn Lym including ArchiCad, Goggle Earth, and Apple Maps derived video

Miles Brothers “Trip Down Market Street” Prelinger Archives  http://archive.org/details/TripDownMarketStreetrBeforeTheFire

.     .     .     .     .     .

“The President’s carriage/American Mutoscope and Biograph Company” Library of Congress  http://memory.loc.gov/mbrs/lcmp003/m3a22730.mov

“San Francisco 1906 Earthquake Market Street” uploaded by steve98604  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMuM8sPWyQ8&feature=player_embedded

“San Francisco Earthquake Aftermath, Part 3 (1906)” Prelinger Archives  http://archive.org/details/SanFranc1906_3 

“San Francisco Earthquake Aftermath, Part 5 (1906)” Prelinger Archives http://www.archive.org/details/SanFranc1906_5

“San Francisco Earthquake Aftermath, Part 6 (1906)” Prelinger Archive  http://www.archive.org/details/SanFranc1906_6

“TR in San Francisco” Library of Congress  http://memory.loc.gov/mbrs/lcmp003/m3a24353.mov


 

M a p s & D i a g r a m s

Basic Research Associates San Francisco Main Library Project: Archeological Monitoring and Architectural Documentation.  Site of the Former City hall completed in 1897 Volumes 1 & 2 of 2 - Private Report housed in the History Room, 6th Floor, San Francisco Main Library December 1994

davidrumsey.com

Glenn Lym

1905 Sanborn Maps  http://www.davidrumsey.com

US Coast Survey “The City of San Francisco and Its Vicinity” 1852

US Coast Survey “The City of San Francisco and Its Vicinity with Wetlands” 1853

US Coast Survey “The City of San Francisco and Its Vicinity” 1857

US Coast Survey “The City of San Francisco and Its Vicinity” 1859

US Coast Survey “The City of San Francisco and Its Vicinity” 1869


 

P h o t o g r a p h s & I l l u s t r a t i o n s

alamedainfo.com

W. J. Ayeward from Jack London "South of the Slot"  The Saturday Evening Post May 22.1909

James Beach Alexander & James Lee Heig San Francisco: Building the Dream City Scottwall Associates 2002

Bancroft Library Online, Univerity of California Berkeley including:

 - Calisphere/UCB Bancroft Library http://content.cdlib.org

- HistofCityHal&CivicCentByTBMcGinnis

- Robert B Honeyman jr Col of Early Calif&WestAmerPicMaterial

LoneMtnCollStereographsByEdwiMuybridge

- RoyDGravesPictorialCol

- ZeldaMackayCollectionOfStereographicViews

Basic Research Associates San Francisco Main Library Project: Archeological Monitoring and Architectural Documentation: Site of the Former City Hall completed in 1897 Volume 1 of 2 - Private Report housed in the History Room, 6th Floor, San Francisco Main Library, December 1994

David Burkhart Earthquake Days: The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire in 3D Faultline Books 2005

bigmapblog.com

Rodger C. Birt History’s Anteroom: Photography in San Francisco 1906-1909 William Stout Publishers Richmond CA 2011

William Bronson The Earth Shook, The Sky Burned Chronicle Books San Francisco 1986

California State Library 1906 San Francisco Earthquake & Fire Digital Collection

California Historical Society  North Baker Research Library

carletonwatkins.org/ 

digital.lib.washington.edu

filmabinitio.blogspot.com

flickr.com/photos/antiquelighting

foundsf.org

Philip L. Fradkin The Great Earthquake and Firestorms of 1906 University of California Press 2005

The Foundation for San Francisco’s Architectural Heritage Newsletter Volume XXIII, Number 5, September/October 1995

Gladys Hansen & Emmet Condon Denial of Disaster: The Untold Story and Photographs of the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire of 1906 Cameron and Company 1989

hillonhistory.com

imagekind.com

kielbryant  flickr.com/kielbryant/

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington

Richard Linthicum, Trumbull White & Samuel Fallows Complete Story of the San Francisco Horror  in www.gutenberg.org

The Staff of the Los Angeles Times The 1989 San Francisco Bay Earthquake: Portraits of Tragedy and Courage

Kathleen Manning San Francisco Early prints 1848-1900 Windgate Press  Sausalito CA 2002

Lost San Francisco  https://www.facebook.com/LostSanFrancisco

Glenn Lym

Museum of California  http://museumca.org/creeks/

Muybridge 1878 Panorama  http://americanhurrah.com 

myspace.com/annamated/blog

National Park Service  www.nps/seac/7&Mission History

pier70sf.org/history/p70_history.html

Prelinger Archive  http://www.archive.org/

Mary P. Ryan "A Laudable Pride in the Whole of Us: City Halls and Civic Materialism" American History Review October 2000, pg 1131-1170

San Francisco Call   "4-14-1901 San Francisco Call"  http://cablecarguy.blogspot.com/

San Francisco Examiner Photo Staff Image November 26, 1989

San Francisco Library Historical Photographs Collection Online

San Francisco Municipal Transit Authority Photo Archive

sfanswers.com

sfgate.com

sfimages.com

sfmuseum.org

shapingsf-wiki.org

shorpy.com

James R. Smith San Francisco’s Lost Landmarks Word Dancer Press  Sangar California 2005

Society of California Pioneers-Lawrence&HouseworthAlbums

Frank Soulé, John H Gihon & James Nisbet  The Annals of San Francisco  D. Appeton & Co, NYC  1855

Stephen Tobriner Bracing For Disaster: Earthquake-Resistant Architecture and Engineering in San Francisco, 1839-1933 Heyday Books/Bancroft Library University of California Berkeley, 2006

urbsite.blogspot.com/

wikipedia.org

wikimedia.org

Sally B. Woodbridge San Francisco in Maps and Views Rizzoli International Publications 2006

Carolyn A Young The Glory of Ottawa: Canada’s First Parliament Buildings  http://books.google.com


 

M u s i c

by Glenn Lym