clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

More Old Maps of San Francisco Guaranteed to Blow Your Mind

New, 3 comments

Earlier this year we brought you a sampling of historic maps of San Francisco. We dove back into the archives to find even more of the Bay Area's best maps, ranging from city's earliest days to tourist maps of the 1950s, including a rather debaucherous one dubbed "The Merry-maker's Map of San Francisco"—hailing from a time, let's just say, before SF's nudity ban went into effect. Here now are 10 more historic maps guaranteed to cartographically blow your mind.

Note: Be sure to click on the images to enlarge them. Some of these maps are pretty big files that may take a minute to open, but it's totally worth it to see all the details.

Back in 1850, San Francisco was still just a small town with cottages and wooden shacks until the Gold Rush transformed it into a city.

By 1891, the northeast part of the city had been built up, but the western and southern areas barely got a nod on the map.

This map looking south shows the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood built up in 1893 (find the Conservatory of Flowers for reference), but most of the area south and west remain forested. That stadium isn't Kezar; it's an area that's now residential.

The 1906 earthquake and fire changed everything, destroying a massive swath of downtown and SoMa.

In 1915 San Francisco held the World's Fair, known as the Panama-Pacific International Exposition. Officially it was to celebrate the completion of the Panama Canal, but the city saw it as a chance to show off how quickly it could rebound after the 1906 earthquake and fire. The area of the Marina just east of the Presidio was transformed into a playland out of temporary plaster-like material, designed to only last for the duration of the fair.

The introduction of the railroads to the Bay Area transformed transportation, opening up the North Bay and beyond to ritzy vacationers.

The 1940s saw an increase in tourism to the city, so maps and postcards were printed up.

This 1950s map decided that most of the Mission and the southeastern part of the city wasn't worthy of tourist attention, covering it up with a legend.

South San Francisco made its own version of a map, encouraging businesses to relocate south.

And now our all-time favorite map, the "Merry-maker's Map of San Francisco," for all your debauchery needs. You'll want to zoom in on this one, trust us.

Some details:

· Old Maps of San Francisco Guaranteed to Blow Your Mind [Curbed SF]