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San Francisco in the 1930sThe WPA Guide to the City by the Bay$
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Federal Writers Project of the Works Project Administration

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520268807

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520268807.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

Landmarks of the Old Town

Landmarks of the Old Town

(p.204) Landmarks of the Old Town
San Francisco in the 1930s

David Kipen

University of California Press

The marvel is not that so little but that so much of the San Francisco's venerable and homely architecture has escaped time's vicissitudes of which not the least was the fire of 1906. Recalling the great fire of 1851—in which the El Dorado gambling saloon was saved by the citizenry's desperate stand—one may suppose that the area around Portsmouth Square was spared, less by a shift of wind, than by San Franciscans stubbornly defending the cradle of their traditions. Unlike the carefully preserved Vieux Carre of New Orleans, however, it survives, not through care, but through sheer neglect. On the muddy shores of a little cove at the southeastern base of a rocky hill (Telegraph Hill), San Francisco was born. A short distance inland, Francisco de Haro marked out his Calle de la Fundacion, skirting the shore on its way north-northwest over the hill toward the Presidio (along the present Grant Avenue).

Keywords:   San Francisco, El Dorado, Portsmouth Square, San Franciscans, traditions, Telegraph Hill, Francisco de Haro, Calle de la Fundacion, Presidio

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