Even as late as twenty years ago, the building of large, ocean-going steamers on the Pacific Coast was not seriously regarded by the world east of the Rocky Mountains. Today there are no better built ships anywhere than those constructed right in San Francisco. The Union, Risdon and Fulton Iron Works, Boole’s shipyard, Dickie’s yard, and a few lesser ones, are capable of turning out as splendid vessels as any of the boasted yards of England, Scotland, Germany or the Easter United States.
San Franciscans always knew of the capabilities of their local shipyards. It was not until Congress awoke to the fact that the Western yards were well equipped and well manned that the shipbuilding establishments of San Francisco started on the road to the worldwide fame they now enjoy.
The earlier cruisers for the United States navy, such as the Charleston and San Francisco, were the first craft to open distant eyes. Then followed a few less notable craft, but when the magnificent battleship Oregon made her memorable run from this city to Jupiter Inlet, Florida, in 1898, and reported, on her arrival: “Ready for duty” it was demonstrated beyond all question that no better vessels can be built anywhere in the world than those of San Francisco.
The Olympia, Dewey’s flagship at Manila Bay; the battleship Wisconsin; several other armor-clads and cruisers, as well as torpedo boats and submarine boats; great steamers of the American-Hawaiian Steamship Company; river boats, freighters, coasting vessels, ferryboats of the Key Route system; sailing vessels of every description—these are sufficient in number, variety and quality to testify unmistakably that San Francisco, in addition to being one of the world’s greatest seaports, is one of the worlds’ greatest shipbuilding centers.And this fact is now acknowledged by the world.
San Francisco News Letter
July 21, 1906