Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Guide to the San Francisco Subjects Photography Collection
PC-SF: Box [number]  
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Contents Note
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: San Francisco Subjects Photography collection,
    Date (inclusive): 1850s-1980s
    Date (bulk): (bulk 1870s-1970s)
    Collection number: PC-SF: Box [number]
    Creator: Photographers, various
    Extent: 105 boxes, 28 oversize boxes

    (ca. 26,500 items)
    Repository: California Historical Society, North Baker Library
    San Francisco, California 94105-4014
    Abstract: Contains photographs and picture postcards depicting scenes of San Francisco places, people and events from the 1850 to the 1980s
    Physical location: Please consult repository.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to California Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Research Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the California Historical Society as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

    Preferred Citation

    San Francisco Subjects Photography collection, PC-SF: Box [number], California Historical Society, Photography Collection.

    Acquisition Information

    Consult repository

    Scope and Contents Note

    Contains photographs and picture postcards depicting scenes of San Francisco places, people and events. Each listing represents a file containing from one to more than fifty images. Some files may also include a small number of non-photographic reproductions and prints.
    Includes images of places listed by category (parks, beaches, cemeteries, islands, etc.), types of establishments (banks, churches, hotels, saloons, etc.), specific buildings and structures (City Hall, Holmes Book Store, Jewish Home for the Aged, Golden Gate Bridge, etc.), as well as districts and neighborhoods (Mission District, Chinatown, North Beach). Views of San Francisco homes and street scenes are found under the headings for architecture-- domestic, and transportation. Also includes images depicting members of organizations (Bohemian Club, San Francisco Bicycle Club, Swedish Athletic Club, etc.) and social groups (Chinese, Italians, etc.), as well as general categories of people by occupation (butchers, labor, newsboys, police). Also includes photographs of events such as expositions and fairs, including the Panama Pacific International Exposition, holidays, parades, strikes, and the earthquake (1906). Images included here complement those found under the named streets and general views files in the San Francisco Streets Photography Collection.


    Organized alphabetically by subject.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    Panama-Pacific International Exposition (1915: San Francisco, Calif.)
    San Francisco (Calif.)--Pictorial works.
    San Francisco (Calif.)--History--Pictorial works.
    San Francisco (Calif.)--Buildings, structures, etc.--Pictorial works.
    Golden Gate Park (San Francisco, Calif.)--Pictorial works.
    Chinatown (San Francisco, Calif.)--Pictorial works.
    Architecture, Domestic--California--San Francisco--Pictorial works.
    Business districts--California--San Francisco--Pictorial works.
    Church buildings--California--San Francisco--Photographs.
    Earthquakes--California--San Francisco--Pictorial works.
    San Francisco Earthquake, Calif., 1906--Pictorial works.

    Genres and Forms of Material

    Photographic prints--California--San Francisco.
    Photographic postcards-California--San Francisco.