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Gallery 3

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Gallery 3 - Part 2
Gallery 3 - Part 3

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Gallery 3 - Part 1 of 3

Goats in San Francisco

(Don't call it Yerba Buena Island)

 

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1.  Wild Goat, Santa Catalina Islands, Cal.; M. Reider publisher, mailed from Avalon 1903

 

 

Goats in San Francisco

(Don't call it Yerba Buena Island)

by Lew Baer

 

Early explorers left goats at anchorages and islands along the California coast as breeding stock to provision future voyages with milk, meat, hides and tallow. The wild goats still thriving on Catalina Island are descendants of those first herds. More goats and other livestock accompanied the padres and Spanish military who trekked north along El Camino Real to establish missions and garrisons. Undoubtedly goats were among the genados menores, the small cattle, that arrived with those settlers who founded Mission Dolores and the Presidio in 1776. By 1849 and the Gold Rush goats were well established in the area. Telegraph Hill was known as Goat Hill, and Yerba Buena Island, today's mid-span anchorage of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, was called Goat Island and was identified as such on military maps well into the twentieth century.

 

Few goats have been seen on San Francisco postcards since 1939 when a cartoon one on Yerba Buena Island welcomed fairgoers to the Golden Gate International Exposition and Orville Ewing posed in front of the Golden Gate Bridge on his uncompleted trek between the two US fairs of that year. Goats were a common sight, however,  during the Golden Age as shown in the cyanotype real photo and the commercial cards of kids in carts at the Children's Playground in Golden Gate Park. Two cards labeled "Children's Quarters" used images dating from the Midwinter Fair of 1894.  City restaurants got in the act as well: conventioneers arrived at Portola-Louvre by goat cart, the Black Cat included a goat in its rebus,  and cards from Coppa's boasted of murals with several goats.  Goats were pictured aboard ship when the Great White Fleet hove into port in 1908, were used as advertising for "Lennon's Kids" on Market Street, and served as props for itinerant photographers in the nineteen teens and twenties.

 

 

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2a.  Caricatour of San Francisco; goat at bottom mid-left. Linen, published 1937

 

 

2b.  Caricatour goat close-up.

 

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3.  Orville Ewing of Pritchett, Colorado and his traveling menagerie at Land's End, 1939

 

 

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4.  Amateur cyanotype at Children's Playground, postally used 1910

 

 

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5.  Donkeys and Goats at Childrens' Play-Ground (sic); Charles Weidner publisher, mailed 1908

 

 

Gallery 3, Part 2 (Goats in San Francisco) Continued...

 

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Last updated: 11/06/2013 03:45:32 PM -0500
 

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