The fantastic footage (with ambient-only sound) and trivia, combined with an infusion of pride for San Francisco’s past and present, make this segment, called simply, “Cable Cars,” a great way to spend 5 minutes of computer time. Along the way, you’ll meet: Ken Lunardi, operator; Norm Feyling, mechanic; and Bob Harris, carpenter.
Produced by Greg Burk for SFGTV‘s award-wining magazine series “City In Focus.”
My favorite bit from this scan of an original flyer in support of Proposition “A”: “All statements in this leaflet are accurate and factual.” That reassuring disclaimer apparently made this passage adequately persuasive:
Who endorsed Proposition “A”? Taxpayer’s groups… labor… doctors, lawyers, merchants, housewives, educators, Republicans, Democrats – everybody who wants a prosperous Bay Area. Opposition? Scattered, local, self-interested.
That’s right, the original plans recommended “first stage” service past Palo Alto to the south, and across the Bay to San Rafael to the north! I wonder how many stages ago that was?
Maybe they should have drafted up some counterfeit money with which to pay for this pipe dream. (Even a tiny fraction of this fantastical scheme is itself worth much higher fares year after year, it seems.)
Came across this file randomly while browsing the Prelinger Archive, which I haven’t done in a while. The footage of longshoremen jockeying cargo on and off ships is a swift check on romanticism and a concrete reminder that, even long ago, industry on a mass scale was what drove almost all of our activity.
I logged a few of the bits that really stood out to me:
3:00 – Steam locomotives navigating Market Street, and cruising along the Embarcardero.
5:00 – Cool aerial footage; Ferry Building with street cars on a circular track in front and a heavy rail locomotive waiting (loading?) on the left; Golden Gate Ferries.
6:50 – I believe this is a quick shot of Dolores Street.
7:40 – Funky, animated relief maps of the area and trade routes, points of interest.
8:55 – Aerial footage of downtown, City Hall and Golden Gate Park.
10:45 – Aerial of the western side of the city; Golden Gate Park, including the bandshell area.