For those of you who don’t know, I’m a Board Member for and the Registrar and Collections Manager at the Western Neighborhoods Project (WNP)–a non-profit organization that preserves and interprets the history of San Francisco’s outside lands. Think the Richmond and Sunset Districts, Saint Francis Wood, Ocean Beach, etc.. And, in case your were wondering: yes, the term “Outside Lands” embodies more than just a music festival, and we were using the name first. But I digress…
We at the WNP have been fortunate to receive a very large collection of historic images from a private collector that depict the western neighborhoods and other areas of the City as it was seen by photographers who made a living on their views as well as your average Joes who liked to fiddle with their cameras in their free time. Some of the images have been seen before, but many more are rare glimpses of the landscape stolen from the lenses of San Franciscans just like you and me…if we had lived in the Dawn Before Internet.
We’ve been working hard to process, catalog, digitize, and interpret these images, and we’re proud to see the first fruits of our labor go live on the internets. Much to our delight, other people are just as excited about this endeavor as we are! Our two Directors–David Gallagher and Woody LaBounty–and I were interviewed by Sarah B of the Richmond SF Blog, The Bold Italic sent Sierra Hartman to our offices for a chat and photo perusal, and Mollie McWilliams at SF Weekly gave us a little shoutout too.
We are so proud to bring these photographs to you all, and we look forward to bringing you much much more in the future. So please stay tuned, continue to check our website for updates and events, and keep in touch–we’re always happy to accomodate guests, volunteers, and generous benefactors (emphasis on generous benefactors!) at our Geary office.