San Francisco Model of 1938 and the Haight

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Woody LaBounty will give a presentation on the massive, 3-D scale model of San Francisco created by the Works Progress Administration in the late 1930s. Described by someone recently as "a pre-Internet Google Street View," the mostly-wood 37' x 40' model depicts every structure standing in the city at the time. Parks, lakes, theatres, schools, and even the color schemes of individual houses are accurately represented. Today, the model provides a fascinating historical viewpoint of a San Francisco both familiar and alien at the same time. Woody will explain the purpose and creation of the model as well as point out highlights, changes, and the development of the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood using sections of the model on display in the branch.

Learn more about History and Genealogy through the wealth of resources available at the Library.

A project of the Public Knowledge partnership between San Francisco Public Library and SFMOMA. 2018-19 photographic images of the model, courtesy of Beth LaBerge

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