San Francisco Through Time depicts the evolution of a cosmopolitan city that began as the settlement of Yerba Buena (Spanish for good herb), and was renamed San Francisco (Spanish for St. Francis), in 1847.
In the 1830s, the population numbered approximately 350 people amongst the sandhills around what is now Portsmouth Plaza, the area bounded by today’s Grant, Stockton, Sacramento, and Clay Streets.
The 1849 discovery of gold in the California foothills drew thousands of people and the tiny hamlet quickly grew to a village of 25,000. Expansion spread geographically from the northeast quadrant of the city, out west towards the Pacific Ocean, and south to the city and county boundary.
Much of the city’s early activity was centered around the north beach, now called the North Beach District. Once known as Little Italy, the enclave offered immigrants a place to call home. The central business district also developed early, presenting a mix of stylish shops, luxury hotels, and distinguished businesses.
Expansion west towards the Pacific Ocean brought recreational opportunities, beginning with the Cliff House in 1863.
San Francisco boasts over 400 officially designed city, state, and national landmarks, highlighting the city’s journey through time with stunning architectural gems and unparalleled vistas.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)
Catherine Accardi is a native San Franciscan. She graduated from San Francisco State University with degrees in photography and urban planning and has a keen interest in San Francisco history and in writing. Her books include Images of America: Walnut Creek, San Francisco’s North Beach & Telegraph Hill, and San Francisco Landmarks. For five years, she was the journalist responsible for the San Francisco Bay Area section of L’Italo-Americano. Catherine hopes her work will highlight our country's local history in a positive way and inspire residents to enjoy their communities.