SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Tumblr: 1906

Tumblr: 1906

"Union Square with Naval Monument and St. Francis Hotel, San Francisco." Aftermath of the April 18, 1906, earthquake and fire. 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

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Below is the same perspective from September of 2009.

Scorch marks at every window

of the still-standing St. Francis Hotel. The fire must have been horrible. While across the street, the buildings have toppled. The amazing column dead centre, standing. The foreground a battlefield of bricks. What an incredibly dramatic photo. And so poignant, with today's quake in the region.

108 years

Wow. Aside from the Dewey Monument, Union Square sure has changed quite a lot since this photo was taken!

All attempts at understatement comedic effect aside, this would make for a fabulous high-quality before and after photo. Only problem is, there are trees in the way now that might make it difficult to pull off.

Fire damage to the (partially completed) Westin St Francis is clearly evident, and it's amazing to me that they just "cleaned her up" and she's still going strong today.

Stunning and timely photo.

[There wasn't any "Westin" back in 1906, although the marketing department for that particular lodging conglomerate is probably thrilled to see people referring to it that way! - Dave]

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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