The Phoenix Arises

San Francisco Promotional Map Showing the Devastating Fires of 1906

Click thumbnails to open zoomable images.

253. [MAP]. CALIFORNIA PROMOTION COMPANY. Map of Part of San Francisco California Showing Buildings Constructed, And Buildings Under Construction During One Year After Fire of April 18, 1906 [above border at lower left] Surveyed and Drawn by Punnett Brothers. 235 James Flood Building, S.F. Cal. [above border at lower center] Copyright, 1907, by Punnett Brothers [above border at lower right] Published by The California Promotion Committee Union Square. San Francisco. California. [inset map at lower left] Map of San Francisco Showing Relative Size and Position of Burned Area. San Francisco, 1907. Lithograph map oriented with north toward lower right, on thin paper with original color (outlining in red in central San Francisco and the area of the Great Fire of 1906; inset map of San Francisco fully colored in the area of the fire). Border to border: 60 x 79 cm; overall sheet size: 65 x 86 cm. Creased where originally folded. Very fine and fresh. Scarce in commerce.

     First edition of a promotional map with good detail and optimistic text (“Building permits issued for year...$60,189,923”). The map is illustrated in Vol. 12 of The Magazine of Business (Chicago, July, 1907), pp. 208-209, with the comment that the map demonstrates “the enterprise and courage of the citizens after a great calamity,” and in a photograph of the business district of San Francisco, the caption reads: “Panorama view of the city of the business district of San Francisco, California, showing the progress which has been made in the reconstruction of the city since it was swept by fire 1906; hundreds of new buildings have been erected and business has shown remarkable new activity, not only in building, but in all other lines of trade, the disaster to the city having given it new life. This picture taken April 18, 1907, one year after the fire, shows how quickly a new city has arisen.”

     The earthquake on April 18, 1906, ignited devastating fires in the city and along the Northern Pacific coast, lasting for several days. About three thousand lives were lost, over eighty percent of San Francisco was destroyed, and over half the population was left homeless. San Francisco wasted no time in rebuilding its unique city. The map shows as much the spirit of the people of San Francisco as the delineation of the city and the damage.


Auction 23 Abstracts

Click thumbnails to open zoomable images.

DSRB Home | e-mail: