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Live, One Night Only

March 16, 2011

Want to see me blather on about La Lengua and Bernal in the 1860s-1880s?  Now’s your chance! The kind folks at the Bernal History Project have invited me to commandeer their monthly session for revolutionary historical purposes. (Fair warning: you know how my posts tend to ramble.)

Tonight, 7PM, Bernal Library, 500 Cortland Avenue. Maps, pictures, and whatever else I think of in the next few hours.

(La Lengua from the top of Bernal, 1888)

All La Lengua residents — be prepared to sing the Ballad of Revolutionary Glory (sung to La Bamba)

Para vivir La Lengua
Para vivir La Lengua
Se necesita el mapa antiguo.
Un puñado de mapas
Para mí para tí
Y burrito y cerveza
Yo no soy historador
Yo no soy historador
Soy burritador, soy burritador, soy burritador


19 Comments leave one →
  1. March 16, 2011 1:13 pm

    I’m going to try and make it — sounds really interesting!

  2. March 16, 2011 2:41 pm

    I’ll be there in spirit. MERDE !

  3. March 16, 2011 9:43 pm

    Having attended, I’d love to write a (highly flattering) review for MSN tomorrow. Would it be possible to snag a jpeg of one of your slides? A casual glance at the site doesn’t show any way to email you, although I’m starving and maybe didn’t see it. Thanks!

    • March 17, 2011 12:06 am

      Hey Pete-

      Thanks for coming!

      Sure – let me send you something tomorrow morning, OK?

  4. March 17, 2011 10:04 am


    We met briefly at the Bernal Library last night. I’d mentioned I had a question I’d like to send you.

    My question has to do with the property where my house is built. The house was built 1945/6 as part of the post WWII building boom. I have the building permit, or what counts as a ‘building permit.’

    The 5 houses in the 800 block of Crescent, plus the 5 houses one block up (the 700 block of Crescent, between Ellsworth & Gates) were all built and sold by Gilbert Plov and Wife #3, Valerie. That makes 10 houses. Looking at a map of the lots, these 10 lots are at right angles to everything else in the area. The other blocks have 12 lots, oriented E-W. It looks to me as if someone took 12 E-W lots and made them into 10 N-S lots. From Sanborn maps, City directories & census records, I also know the 700 block was mostly a nursery (Felix Gonzalez) but the nursery did not seem to extend E of Gates.

    I’m trying to find out when that happened. Did Plov do it? He has at least one SF Supervisor action with his name on it (release of easement for property near what I affectionately call the Alemany Voretex). I have not found anything similar for 12 lots getting rotated and turning into 10. I do not know when Plov bought the property.

    Any hints on where I might find an answer to this?

  5. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable permalink
    March 17, 2011 12:47 pm

    Whoa, is that the Salvation Army building in the top center?

    • March 17, 2011 11:34 pm

      I do believe so. Some cosmetic differences, but the Sanborn maps line up nicely with Google Earth.

      It was a shoe factory.

  6. Janet C permalink
    March 17, 2011 8:26 pm

    I was there last night, and I really enjoyed your talk. You held the attention of my ten year old as well. Thank you.

    Also, I promise to do my best to get the word tarnal into general usage.

    • March 17, 2011 11:31 pm

      Thanks! I figured the kids would like the animal references.

    • Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable permalink
      March 17, 2011 11:38 pm

      That is terrific! I have often wondered about that building, but I had no idea that it was that old. Thanks!

  7. March 18, 2011 10:46 am

    Hey Johnny, check this out! It looks like exactly the kind of app you mentioned wanting, in the talk: .

    As a lawyer, I have been trying to find that RJ Tiffany case for you but unfortunately the (free) FindLaw database only goes back to 1934. I may have another angle to locate it. Also, I’m pretty sure it’s a California (not U.S.) Supreme Court case, estate cases are almost always a matter of state law. I’ll keep you posted if I find anything.

  8. Rai Sue permalink
    March 18, 2011 3:01 pm

    Hey, I briefly came to the talk and had to leave before you really got started. Too much stuff going on in this town…but I thoroughly enjoyed what I saw. I now have two questions. First, what’s the RJ Tiffany case GG mentioned? I too am of the attorney type, so maybe I could use my westlaw and see what I can dig up…Number two, did you talk about that giant wall between Tiffany and Mission Street? I used to live on the east side of Tiffany, and I love that wall (though I wonder why it doesn’t tip over) which defines the street’s back yards. Is it from the street car garage that used to be there, or something else?

    • March 18, 2011 3:30 pm

      Thanks for coming! Working on the post summarizing what I presented. But in short his will was challenged and went to a Supreme Court.

      Yup, it was the wall of the streetcar barn for the Market St Railway. It was there until the 1940s. One of many articles in the queue!

  9. March 18, 2011 6:12 pm

    I’m assuming you have the opinion from the lower court that’s available on Google Books in “Reports of Probate Decisions” from 1894 — if not, e-mail me.

    • March 21, 2011 1:34 am

      wow, 1894? no – that dragged out longer than I thought.

    • Rai Sue permalink
      March 24, 2011 11:27 am

      Hi GG–I don’t have the opinion, but would love to see it if you want to send it over. What is your email? Or find mine by googling me…I am reluctant to post it

  10. Taco_Truth permalink
    March 18, 2011 7:25 pm

    So anyone snap a pic of Johnny for the rest of us?

    • March 18, 2011 8:16 pm

      I prefer my pseudodigitalnymity, actually.


  1. La Lengua Receives Official Recognition on the Map That Matters Most | Bernalwood

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