Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.
Vintage photos of:
Back to my Uncle Albert in his office at the Foote, Cone and Belding advertising agency in San Francisco's Russ Building about 1954. Amid a fine selection of period office accouterments, including a space-saver phone and cigarette ashes, he's working on this ad. As Vice-President and Production Manager, he was in charge of layout, design, graphics and typography, and also for such accounts as Southern Pacific, Dole Pineapple and Pacific Bell.
Albert's interest in fine printing and typography led to his amassing a significant collection of manuscripts, first editions, prints and other art, much of which now resides at institutions like Stanford, UCLA and Berkeley. In particular, his collection of over 1000 books, drawings, etchings and correspondence of the English sculptor, printmaker and typeface designer (as in Gill Sans) Eric Gill is at the Gleeson Library of the University of San Francisco. View full size.
James Clair Flood Mansion (now Pacific Union Club), 1000 California Street, San Francisco. Built 1885-86; Augustus Laver, architect. Reputed cost of about $1 million. Flood died 1889; Mrs. Flood, 1897. Descendants occupied until fire of 1906 gutted interior. Acquired by Pacific Union Club about 1909 and remodeled by Willis Polk in 1910. New England brownstone shell (said to be first brownstone west of Mississippi); Italianate ornamental details. Fence of bronze by W.T. Garratt, at cost estimated from $30,000 to $60,000. Only Nob Hill house to survive fire. —HABS, 1940
March 1940. The Flood Mansion in San Francisco, last seen here after being gutted by fire following the 1906 earthquake, 108 years ago today. Photo by A.J. Wittlock for the Historic American Buildings Survey. View full size.