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1920 Candrian Map of San Francisco and Nearby Peninsula Communities

Candrian's official double indexed street number guide : with car-o-grams and maps of San Francisco, Daly City... - Main View

1920 Candrian Map of San Francisco and Nearby Peninsula Communities


San Francisco in the heyday of streetcars.


Candrian's official double indexed street number guide : with car-o-grams and maps of San Francisco, Daly City...
  1920 (undated)     20 x 23.75 in (50.8 x 60.325 cm)     1 : 22500


This is an appealing c. 1920 map of San Francisco, San Mateo, and other nearby communities in the Bay Area, California, by Hermon Anton Candrian and Davenport Bromfield. It illustrates San Francisco following its recovery from the devastating 1906 earthquake and fire and its gradual expansion to the south and west.
San Francisco
The primary San Francisco map covers from the Presidio as far south as McLaren Park and the Laguna de la Merced. The map names all major and minor streets as well as lakes, golf courses, piers, municipal buildings, colleges, street cars, and military installations. A series of circles indicate radial distances emanating from Ferry Building on the Embarcadero at the end of Market St.

San Francisco at this time was well into a period of recovery from the 1906 earthquake and fire that destroyed much of the city. While the city reconstructed, many displaced residents found dwellings outside the city center and the city expanded outwards, to the west into the Richmond and Sunset Districts, to the southwest through Forest Hill and Laguna Honda, and to the south into the Mission District, Noe Valley, and surrounding areas.

Forest Hill to the southwest of Twin Peaks stands out here and was unsurprisingly planned to be different from the rest of the city, with wide and winding boulevards (that did not conform to city regulations). As with several nearby neighborhoods, it was also meant to be a White-only and wealthy neighborhood, removed from the purported dangers and annoyances of city life (Westwood Park, while also racially exclusive, was meant to be more middle-class).

One clear difference between this map and a map of the city from a decade or two later would be the presence of several cemeteries around Lone Mountain near the northeast corner of Golden Gate Park. Originally built in the 1850s and 1860s, these cemeteries were at the center of a decades-long dispute between families and overseers of the deceased on the one hand and the city on the other. The park-like cemeteries had been on the edge of the city when they were built but now stood in the way of urban development. Beginning in 1900, the city tried to ban burials in the city and then moved to ban cremations a decade later. The city bought tracts of property to the south in Colma and began moving graves, but lawsuits held up the process, eventually reaching the U.S. Supreme Court in 1910, and the removal of graves was only completed in the 1930s with the assistance of Works Progress Administration (WPA) laborers. Even still a small portion of the Odd Fellows Cemetery remains, including a Neo-Classical domed columbarium, now tucked at the end of a residential street behind a row of shops and restaurants on Geary Blvd.

The 'Olympic Salt Water Pier' that appears near the Sutro Baths and the Cliff House refers to the Lurline Pier or Lurline Ocean Water Baths advertised at right, with locations at Bush and Larkin Streets (Nob Hill) and at Geary Blvd. and Divisadero, not far from the cemeteries mentioned above. The baths, more convenient than the much larger but distant Sutro Baths, opened in 1894 and were captured in an early motion picture three years later by Thomas Edison and his colleagues.

Candrian was known for his 'car-o-grams' which were a schematic representation of the city's many streetcar, cable car, and railroad lines, both public and private (shown by green lines here). These covered nearly all parts of the city, including through the Richmond District all the way to the ocean and the former estate of Adolph Sutro, the populist millionaire and one-time mayor of the city. After the 1906 earthquake, several private lines consolidated into United Railroads of San Francisco (URR), while the city began building lines for the San Francisco Municipal Railway (Muni). Eventually, Muni took control of all the lines and replaced many with trolleybuses, though seven modernized streetcar lines remain in use, along with three historic cable car and two historic streetcar lines, the latter mostly for tourism rather than commuting.
Neighboring towns
Although his maps of San Francisco are universally pleasing to the eye and well made, Candrian maps are of greater interest for their verso content, which often feature excellent maps of generally underserved parts of the Bay Area - in this case San Mateo, Burlingame, San Bruno, Daly City, and South San Francisco. Although today these are bustling communities, including some in the heart of Silicon Valley, when this map was issued, they were sleepy suburbs. This map is one of the few commercial maps of the period to illustrate these towns. The verso also includes a map of the southern half of the Bay Area, including Oakland, Alameda, and other communities in the East Bay.
Publication History and Census
Candrian published this map from about 1906 to 1935 in various editions. The copyright is not followed by a date in this case, but from context it would appear to be from around 1920. The recto map most closely resembles an edition dated to 1916 (OCLC 62295923). The present edition is only held by the University of California Berkeley, the California Historical Society, and the National Library of Australia, and is very scarce to the market.


Hermon Anton Candrian (March 28, 1852 - November 28, 1928), commonly publishing as H. A. Candrian, was a Swiss-American map publisher active in San Francisco in the first half of the 20th Century. Candrain was born in Bonaduz, Graubünden, Switzerland. It is unclear when he emigrated to the Untied States, but he working as an insurance agent in Seattle around 1900 and by 1905 had relocated to San Francisco. Candrian’s works focus heavily and tourist and railway guides to the city of San Francisco and the general Bay Area. Learn More...

Davenport Bromfield (July 2, 1862 - August 22, 1954) was an Australian Civil Engineer active in San Mateo, California in the first half of the 20th century. Bromfield was born in Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia. He immigrated to the United States in 1870, settling in San Francisco. There he apprenticed as a Civil Engineer. He held the position of Deputy County Surveyor of San Francisco for 2 years before taking a position with the Southern Pacific Railroad. He relocated to San Mateo and was elected San Mateo County Surveyor in 1890. In that position he produced several important large-scale maps of San Mateo County and City. By 1900, he established himself in private enterprise as a Civil Engineer and Surveyor. Davenport remained in San Mateo until his death in 1954. Learn More...


Very good. Offsetting present on both recto and verso.


OCLC 213719736.