Saturday, July 09, 2016
It's hard to imagine San Francisco without the wonderful cable cars trundling up and down the steep hills - they're as iconic to 'Frisco as the Eiffel Tower is to Paris. Without even trying I've acquired a bunch of photos of the cable cars; all of today's are from 1954, from completely different lots. Did something happen around that time that made everyone want to visit The City by the Bay? I thought it might be Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo", but that wasn't released until 1958.
This one might be my favorite of the bunch, though it is a close call. You might disagree! There's something about the color and the the people in their vintage clothes. And Woolworth's! Another thing all three of these photos have in common is that they were all taken at the Powell Street terminal; notice that the cable car rests on a circular turntable, which was so finely balanced that the whole contraption could be turned by two men.
This one's pretty neat too, since we get a nice look up Powell. The tall building in the distance is the famous Sir Francis Drake Hotel. You can see that one of the uniformed men to the left has a change machine on his belt - as a kid I always thought those were cool!
And... here's one last view, with the cable car being turned so that it can head back up the street. While the much of the original cable car system has been removed over the years, you can still ride the Powell Street line. It's popular with tourists of course, but I wonder how many San Franciscans use it as real transportation?
I hope you have enjoyed your visit to San Francisco!