This Was San Francisco, by Albert Tolf (1956)
May 23, 2016 2:32 PM   Subscribe

Remarkable comic book work published in The San Francisco News. Scanned by Ron Henggeler from a book found in the UC Berkeley Library. (Previously!)
posted by azazello (17 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
 
Oh wow. This is neat. Thanks for sharing. I know what I'll be reading when I get home from work.
posted by Fizz at 2:46 PM on May 23, 2016


Wonderful.
posted by latkes at 2:59 PM on May 23, 2016


Very nice. The play with the typography and flow of the artwork on the page reminds me of Walt Kelly.
posted by lagomorphius at 3:04 PM on May 23, 2016


Moe's Books is not the UC Berkeley Library. It's much better.
posted by theodolite at 3:25 PM on May 23, 2016 [5 favorites]


It looks like this guy just scanned a book and posted it online, adding his own copyright line on the bottom of the images. What's up with that?
posted by gyusan at 3:28 PM on May 23, 2016 [3 favorites]


This is a real find. They remind me of Larry Gonick's work in The Cartoon History of the Universe.
posted by chavenet at 3:35 PM on May 23, 2016 [1 favorite]


theodolite: Oops, I wasn't reading that carefully. Apologies to Moe's Books, which gets the credit.
posted by azazello at 3:38 PM on May 23, 2016




That 1852 page is a good reminder that the "telegraph" of Telegraph Hill was the awesomely Myst-esque optical kind, rather than the still-cool but more familiar deety deet kind
posted by theodolite at 3:50 PM on May 23, 2016 [5 favorites]


So, "The Mission Dolores was established in 1776 by Father Junipero Serra," but also, "The first Roman Catholic services were regularly held in St. Patrick's church in 1851 on Market Street between 2nd and 3rd Sts."

This cartoon history isn't as reliable as I expected.
posted by The Tensor at 3:54 PM on May 23, 2016 [2 favorites]


First, the city of San Francisco at that time was geographically distinct from Mission Dolores. Second, Mission Dolores was in decline and mostly shut down between 1810 and 1854. So it's not obvious those two statements are in conflict with each other.
posted by azazello at 4:18 PM on May 23, 2016 [5 favorites]


So basically, SF hasn't changed at all.

pro-tip: most things don't
posted by entropicamericana at 6:17 PM on May 23, 2016


Moe's Books is not the UC Berkeley Library. It's much better.

I love Moe's, but :(

We have over 11 million volumes...

We have San Francisco News on microfilm...

Please come visit, it's so cold in the stacks...
posted by teponaztli at 6:35 PM on May 23, 2016 [8 favorites]


So many great little details! The image of the ferry building is so great.

It's actually amazing to me how much the city has changed, physically. It's easy to feel like the way things look right now are the way they always will but these drawings show bridges and railways and buildings that are long gone.
posted by macrael at 6:35 PM on May 23, 2016


It looks like this guy just scanned a book and posted it online, adding his own copyright line on the bottom of the images. What's up with that?

It does sort of look like he scanned an entire book and posted it online, which, I mean - it's probably really out of print, but it was printed after 1941 and this is almost certainly a pretty major copyright violation. That's not to say it's not a great find, but yeah.
posted by teponaztli at 6:44 PM on May 23, 2016


Re: the telegraph hill telegraph, there is this delightful bit from Wikipedia:

The pole-and-arm signals on the Telegraph Hill semaphore became so well known to townspeople that, according to one story, during a play in a San Francisco theater, an actor held his arms aloft and cried, "Oh God, what does this mean?," prompting a rogue in the gallery to shout, "Sidewheel steamer!," which brought down the house.
posted by macrael at 6:48 PM on May 23, 2016 [12 favorites]


This is fantastic, thanks for posting it!
posted by languagehat at 8:19 AM on May 24, 2016


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