140 photographs, 70 pages of documents, and 36 minutes of film from 1906, covering the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire of 1906.
The 8.3 magnitude earthquake struck at 5:12am on April 18, 1906. and was centered along the San Andreas Fault, which slices through coastal California. The devastation was compounded by a subsequent three-day fire.
Most of the cities of central California were badly damaged. San Francisco, with thousands of unreinforced brick buildings, and thousands more closely-spaced wooden Victorian dwellings, was poorly prepared for a major fire. Collapsed buildings, broken chimneys, and a shortage of water due to broken mains led to several large fires that soon coalesced into a city-wide holocaust. The fire swept over nearly a quarter of the city, including the entire downtown area. Dynamite was used with varying success to prevent the fire from spreading westward. Over 3,000 people are now estimated to have died as a result of the disaster. For the surviving refugees, the first few weeks were hard; as aid poured in from around the country, thousands slept in tents in city parks, and all citizens were asked to do their cooking in the street. A severe shortage of public transportation made use out of anything on wheels. Numerous businesses relocated temporarily in Oakland and many refugees found lodgings outside the city. Reconstruction of the city proceeded at a furious pace and by 1908, San Francisco was well on the way to recovery.
The CD contains 70 pages of documents relating to the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire. Included are correspondence, memoranda, and reports which record federal emergency response by the Army's Presidio of San Francisco. Also included are the report and related correspondence concerning Lieutenant Frederick N. Freeman, commander of the USTBD Perry, and his unit's activities during the earthquake and fire.
The CD contains 140 photographs pertaining to the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire. Images include: A view of Van Ness Avenue on fire. The destruction of City Hall. A view from the harbor looking towards the fire. Refugees leaving on foot and by horse and buggy escaping the city. Images showing damage to structures including: The San Francisco Mint, Mutual Saving Bank, Hibernia Bank, Valencia Hotel, Fairmont Hotel, Hopkins Art Institute, Stanford's mansion, Saint Ignatius Church, Third and Market Streets, Call Building, Examiner Building, Monodanock Building, Chronicle Building, Beth Israel Synagogue, Palace Hotel, and The Hall of Records.
The CD includes 36 minutes of film shot in 1906 of the destruction.