September 18, 2008

History Underfoot

An SFGate article about Proposition D got us thinking about the history of iron forges in San Francisco. In a 15 minute walk around the neighborhood, we took pictures of the iron "calling cards" in the slide show above.

Here's a couple of stories to go with the photos:

Fan of the Wedgewood Stove? Turns out that the James Graham Manufacturing Company made more than the famous stove: "in the early days coal and wood burning ranges were made; plumbing supplies were also turned out and sold widely." The foundry also supplied railroads. Mr Graham passed away in 1898.

"San Francisco's first electric railway company, The San Francisco and San Mateo Railroad Company, founded in 1889 by Behrend and Isaac Joost." Folded and reorganized in 1896.

And here's a business that is still around. Has been since 1906.


Cyn said...

Gee, I'm not the only one who looks at the street. I've got loads of photos of drain coverings and have documented the addresses where they are found. I hope people think about the history before they tear these out of the side walk.

Tyler said...

So great! I have been collecting photos of these things and other long-lasting sidewalk infrastructure for years:
I have almost 200 different companies represented (plumbers, pavers, foundries, hardware stores, contractors, etc.), and counting. They are different in every neighborhood. I've started mapping the business addresses printed on them in Flickr, to see what's there now. There is a rich history of industrial San Francisco written in the sidewalks.