This Map of the City of San Francisco California published by Poole Bros. Chicago in 1913, under the commission of Wells Fargo & Company Express, provides a detailed and historic portrayal of San Francisco just prior to the celebrated Panama-Pacific Exposition of 1915. This map is a testimony to the city's urban development during the early 20th century, underscored by the simultaneous promotion of the burgeoning streetcar and railroad networks.
Significantly, the map highlights the future site of the Panama-Pacific Exposition, an event that marked San Francisco's recovery from the devastating 1906 earthquake and proclaimed the city's return to prominence on the global stage. The exposition, which ran from February 20 to December 4, 1915, featured participants from around the globe and promoted San Francisco as a hub of international commerce and culture. By emphasizing the grounds of the exposition, the map anticipates this monumental event, showcasing the city's readiness to host such a grand international gathering.
On the reverse side, though less visible due to the map's mounting, is a plan of the grounds and buildings of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition. This 1914 map presents a detailed layout of the exposition's architectural and spatial design, further affirming the significant role that the event played in shaping San Francisco's urban landscape and cultural history.
In addition, the inclusion of a small illustration of the Wells Fargo exhibit booth ties the map to the economic history of the region. Wells Fargo & Company, having been founded during the California Gold Rush, was deeply entrenched in the development of the West, acting as a symbol of economic growth and opportunity.
Thus, the Map of the City of San Francisco California, with its unique dual-sided design, serves as a significant artifact of San Francisco's early 20th-century urban development, transportation evolution, and global cultural engagements. Its association with Wells Fargo also embeds it firmly within the narrative of Western economic expansion, offering a multidimensional perspective on the city's history.