First to shake
First to burn
First to take
Another new turn !
San Franciscan’s may have lost their
possessions and buildings – but not their spirit. Before the flames died people
began building a new life. Tent refugee camps were erected with the help of the
US Army. Famous local restaurants re-opened in little wooden shacks among the
ruins. Low redwood shops sprouted up on Van Ness Avenue to house fashionable
businesses. To quote Edwin Emerson, Jr. from Sunset Magazine October 6, 1906,
“All combines in one composite impression, … the very sunlit air seems to
They stayed – YOUR family stayed - and together with worldwide help, built a stronger, even more magnificent San Francisco for us to treasure.
Please send us your family’s story. Your oral histories hold the key to this research. Without them we would never be able to create an accurate account of the devastation and re-birth this event caused. Please send a separate entry for each family member. If your family member was female, please include her maiden name if possible. Please include the following information in your response:
• YOUR name, e-mail address and phone or address
• Your ancestor’s SURNAME, GIVEN NAME, MAIDEN NAME, SPOUSE’S FULL NAME,
RELATIONSHIP TO YOU, DATE OF BIRTH AND PLACE OF BIRTH
• The street address of your ancestor BEFORE April 18, 1906 (or how you can
• document they were here)
• Reason WHY they were in San Francisco (job, family, traveling, etc.)
• Was their residence or business destroyed or damaged?
• Were they in a refugee camp? Where?
• Were they injured, either physically or mentally?
• If this is a child, were they orphaned or placed in a home?
• Did they continue to live/work in San Francisco? If so – where?
• Did they move out of the area? If so – where to?
Please feel free to make your story as long as you wish. Please be as detailed as possible using names of friends or relatives, specific addresses or locations, types of building and what they were made of. We will send you an e-mail acknowledgement as your ancestors are added to the Register.