SFMTA Time Machine
Last week the esteemed David Gallagher kindly pointed me to a photo of a streetcar from the SFMTA photo archives.
The photo wasn’t embedded and I initially thought “Hey thanks David but I’m sure I’ve seen this one before.”
I had not seen this one before.
Or any of the photos in the archive save one or two. Warning to San Franciscans: clear the rest of today’s schedule before opening this and any other link to the SFMTA Time Machine.
Anyway, the photo above is looking at where Cole Hardware is today. Here’s the 1905 Sanborn map of that side of the street:
The streetcar was turning into the car house across the street. Here is a photo showing the car bar from 1910, looking north on Mission towards 29th — within 6 years, the entire west (left) side of Mission had been rebuilt, including the building that the 3300 Club is in now. (If I remember correctly, the dome was removed during WWI.)
Lots of the photos are nicely tagged, but some are not, or hold surprises. For example, this 1905 photo is just labelled with the “22nd 24th & Mission Street line” but for those living in the greater La Lengua Co-Prosperity Sphere will realize it is a shot of Bernal Hill taken from Valencia and Mission streets, looking to the east up Fair.
The lower white fence that you can see through the streetcar windows is Peters, and the one above it is (well, will be) Coleridge. Here’s the 1905 Sanborn for reference.
The two houses on the right edge of the photo match up with 61 and 65 Coleridge:
Also, that platform in the top right corner of the photo is clearly visible on the Sanborn map.
Here’s a dramatic SFMTA shot of Mission and 29th in 1909, looking down from above what will be the 3300 Club towards what will be Pizzahacker (so sorry verb tenses):
This is the same curve where our 1907 runaway streetcar jumped the tracks and crashed into future Pizzahacker after it was set loose by union sympathizers who shot the conductor. Zooming in, you can see the signs for Bernstein’s Mission Toggery and Warrens’s candy and ice cream store.
Also, a dog.
Same corner in 1904 during some track work.
There used to be a kindergarten at 3303 Mission next to proto-Pizzahacker — it closed sometime between 1900 and 1905, so not sure if those kids are escaping from it or not. Can’t quite tell if the real estate/insurance sign was painted over or not.
Red is where Pizzahacker will be, kindergarten is 3301-3303 Mission:
And the 1905 Sanborn:
The dentist (with a saloon on the ground floor) is long gone — that building is where 199 Tiffany now stands, and that particular spot is where Goood Frickin’ Chicken now serves delicious shwarma. But to the right is the building the home of Al’s Diner, and next to that, the new home of Ichi Sushi.
Stopping now before this posts turns into a doctoral thesis, but fret not as we will dig up more soon on other corners and streets in this ridiculously fabulous SFMTA historical photo archive.