Tourism has changed the Golden Gate Bridge Promenade drastically since this 1940’s picture was taken. I think it’s a very romantic picture.
A heartbreaking image of a mother comforting her frightened child on Telegraph Hill looking toward Russian Hill and the Golden Gate just after the 1906 Earthquake and Fire:
San Francisco Police chase Buster Keaton down Powell Street past Washington in a scene similar to a Keystone Kops movie in the 1922 short film ‘Day Dreams’. It’s remarkable to me how well this location compares to today!
Fisherman’s Wharf at dusk in the 1950’s: This one was a “labor of love”; the top photo just might be my favorite San Francisco picture.
Hyde at Greenwich in the 1950’s: I should have waited for a cable car like Fred Lyon did, but I enjoyed the scenery too much.
Another Cushman Collection photo; men at work, at 3rd and Mission in the 1960’s: I like the girls at work in the modern picture too.
“Go ahead, give him a call. He’ll go out with you.”
The Fisherman’s Wharf Lagoon in June of 1940: “Come all ye young sailor men, listen to me; I’ll sing you a song of the fish in the sea!” Behind where Alioto’s is today was the enormous gas tank that stood in Fisherman’s Wharf from the 1930’s to the 1960’s. The old picture is from the Cushman Collection of color photographs at the Indiana University.
Another great picture from the Cushman Collection of color photos from the 1930’s through the 1960’s, this one from 1953.
“Hey Mister, can you help us?”
“I know, your ball rolled down the street and you want me to get it for you, right?”
“Uh, uh! Our friend rolled down the street!”
Hyde at Lombard Streets: To the right and out of the picture is the “Crookedest Street in the World”. When driving in San Francisco, remember, cable cars always have the right of way. By the way, that large house on the corner once belonged to Fanny Osborne Stevenson, the wife of author Robert Louis Stevenson.
This one is right in my backyard! Jane Fonda and Donald Sutherland filmed a scene in Downtown Hayward from the 1973 movie ‘Steelyard Blues’. The film was not well received as it was made shortly after Fonda’s controversial visit to North Vietnam that many people resent her for to this day. Here Sutherland spots Fonda on a bus, and chases her down Mission Blvd to the B Street corner, and the same location today.
At a McDonald’s several blocks from AT&T Park, a movie line that, I think safe to say, is of historic significance, was first heard. In the fourth “Dirty Harry” installment ‘Sudden Impact’ from 1983, Clint Eastwood utters the immortal words, “Go ahead, make my day.” while punking down a bad guy. This line was so popular that President Ronald Reagan used it in referring to his veto pen if Congress presented him with any further tax increase bills. However, the restaurant was not a McDonald’s back then. McDonald’s sure spruced up the pole that was behind Clint Eastwood when he entered the restaurant!
After the April 18th 1906 Earthquake, about the only thing left standing on Nob Hill was the entrance to the A. N. Towne mansion on California Street. One year later, on April 18th 1907 when the top photo was taken, the city was rebuilding and the pillars were still there. “Well, we might as well get rid of that doorway now. Throw it out in Golden Gate Park.” Today, it’s the ‘Portals of the Past’ at Lloyd Lake. (Okay, I sneaked one of me in).
The Cliff House in 1957 in what, just might be, the best picture of the Cliff House I’ve seen. I’ve been going out there since my mom and dad first took me there when I was around eight years old, and I still go out there all the time. There seems to be a pattern here!
Barbara Lawrence looks back at the Ferry Building after arriving in San Francisco in the 1949 film ‘Thieves Highway’. From the look on her face, she had a rough boat ride! Behind her is the Southern Pacific Building, built in 1916.
Now, you didn’t think I was going to leave Chinatown out, did you? This rare early 1940’s Kodachrome picture captures Chinatown beautifully! I also got a pretty good line up on this one.
In the 2014 version of Godzilla, (the year 2014, not the 2014th time it was filmed) Godzilla wanders off into the Bay next to the Pier 7 walking pier at the end of the film after demolishing just about all of San Francisco.
This was the scene that got me started on these then and nows. I was watching the 1948 movie ‘The Lady from Shanghai’ a few years back. At the part where Orson Welles escapes from the old Hall of Justice and runs across Kearny Street to Portsmouth Square in the rain, I thought, “I know where that is! I wonder what it looks like now?” There are some fine then and now photographers, and I don’t pretend to be any better, but I don’t think anybody enjoys doing this more than I do. (Good for you if you spotted the 1948 ’99¢ Store’ on the corner of Kearny and Clay Streets)