Skip to main content

(Alfred) Clarke's Water Works photograph album

 Collection — Box: 01
Identifier: PC -PA -225
Photograph album containing 25 albumen prints of views of Clarke's Water Works, San Francisco, taken by James W. Walton between 1890-1891. The photograph album documents Alfred Clarke's early San Francisco water company located in the Glen Park and Eureka Valley neighborhoods of San Francisco. Nearly all photographs include a printed descriptive caption detailing the location and purpose of Clarke's water projects. Photographs show and captions describe features of the water system including Blaine Engine House and Pump; the Blain Dam and Nellie Dam; the Nellie Reservoir; and the man-made Lake Lincoln. Other natural features of the Eureka Valley and Glen Park areas documented in the photograph album include Mount Lincoln (commonly known as Mount Davidson); Mount Blaine (commonly known as Gold Mine Hill); and Lake Farragut (commonly known as Pine Lake). Clarke's mansion at Douglass Street and Caselli Avenue is also featured in the photograph album. Photograph album includes descriptive captions original to its creation and additional notes added later by the photograh album's owner, Alexander Thomas Leonard. One page of the album is missing its original photograph, although the original caption still remains. Three clippings of the San Francisco Chronicle Riptides column and a clipping of an obituary for Joseph Huff published in the San Francisco Call Bulletin are affixed to the pages in place of the missing photograph.

Dates

  • 1890 - 1891

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials in this collection, which were created in 1890-1891, are in the public domain in the United States. Permission to publish or reproduce is not required.

Extent

1.23 linear feet

Overview

Photograph album containing 25 albumen prints of views of Clarke's Water Works, San Francisco, taken by James W. Walton between 1890-1891. The photograph album documents Alfred Clarke's early San Francisco water company, Clarke's Water Works, located in the Glen Park and Eureka Valley neighborhoods of San Francisco.

Biographical / Historical

Alfred Clarke arrived in San Francisco in 1850 from Ireland. After a failed attempt at striking it rich in the gold country of Nevada County, Clarke returned to San Francisco and began work with the San Francisco Police Department. He built his mansion in Eureka Valley at Douglass Street and Casselli Avenue. An ongoing fued with his neighbor, Behrend Joost, prompted him to start Clarke's Water Works in 1891, a service that supplied water to Eureka Valley residents and competed with Joost's Mountain Spring Water Company. Clarke died in San Francisco in 1902.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Alexander Thomas Leonard, M.D. to the San Francisco Historical Society; transferred to the California Historical Society.

General

Most titles supplied by cataloger using captions original to the photograph album.
General Clarke named many local natural features and his water system equipment after admired political figures. Cataloger has included generally accepted names of local natural features the parenthesis following the names created by Clarke.
General Handwritten notes and captions by photograph album's owner, Alexander Thomas Leonard, were added years after the creation of the photograph album.
Title
Finding aid to the (Alfred) Clarke's Water Works photograph album
Status
completed
Author
Jaime Henderson, 2019
Date
February 2019
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the California Historical Society Repository

Contact:
678 Mission Street
San Francisco CA 94105