As I have mentioned in the past, I love to explore San Francisco in May more than any other month of the year; the weather is usually accommodating, and the City is so pretty in the spring. Of course, this won’t be the case this May; the shelter-in-place order due to the coronavirus pandemic has been extended to the end of May, for now. This is causing a lot of people worry and concern, and I’m no exception, but it might also be saving our lives. The reports that some of the restrictions may be eased up a little brought a lot of people out of their shelters on “May Day”, May 1st, possibly in honor of International Workers Day. I took a drive through Golden Gate Park to the coast on May 1st and walked around Downtown San Francisco on the 2nd. Outdoor picture taking has been officially sanctioned now, which isn’t a bad idea because you’ll get to see a San Francisco you’ve never seen before, and hopefully, never will again.
The Bay Bridge Toll Plaza on opening day, November 12th 1936: There was only one camera taking my picture when I crossed the bridge yesterday, and I’ll be getting a pay ticket bill soon. Sadly, this reminds me of a missing man formation; the number 14 toll booth where a lady toll collector was killed in an accident in 2017 is still missing. (Vintage picture, worthpoint.com, posted on Pinterest)
A view of Playland-at-the-Beach, then known as Chutes-at-the-Beach, looking along La Playa from the south side of Sutro Heights in the 1930s: You can see the Dutch Windmill in Golden Gate Park in both pictures. (worhtpoint.com)
The Cabrillo Street turnaround at the Great Highway in the 1950s: The Playland Funhouse is in the background.
Work on the Ocean Beach Seawall near the Cliff House in the 1920s: The Sutro Heights cliffs looked so barren back then. (worhtpoint.com)
This May 8th will be the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe, V-E Day. Here, San Franciscans and military visitors are celebrating the news in front of the old Telenews Theater on Market Street. The Telenews was approximately just west of where the corner of Market and Cyril Magnin Streets is now. The roof of the Number One Powell Street Building is in the upper right of the vintage photo. (The San Francisco Chronicle)
Market Street near 5th in 1966: I’ll redo this one when the vintage F Line Streetcars are running along here again. My picture was taken on another busy day for the police on a Market Street left mostly to vandals and deranged street people during the shelter-in-place. (Pinterest)
A rally to reelect Governor Pat Brown on Grant Avenue at Clay Street in Chinatown: Well, this is an election year in the United States too. I’m not sure if this was when Brown was elected for a second term in 1962 or when he lost his bid for reelection in 1966 to Ronald Reagan: My picture was taken today in a depressingly empty Chinatown. (Street Scenes of San Francisco)
Normally, I’d wait for a cable car to come along before updating this 1966 photo on California Street between Stockton Street and Grant Avenue, but not I nor anybody else knows when the cable cars will be running again. (ebay)