Journey with us back in time as we reveal the stories, people, lost landmarks, and ephemeral wonders of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Each month from June to November, Odd Salon, a community of history enthusiasts and experts, will tell the city’s weird and wonderful history through cocktail-hour talks highlighting the most fascinating, overlooked, strangest, and intriguing stories from the city’s past, one era at a time. To help bring these stories to life, CHS archivists and librarians will showcase objects of intrigue, including maps, photos, ephemera, rare books, and historic items from the CHS Collection in a series of pop-up exhibits in the North Baker Library.
We begin with an exploration of the natural history and early foundations of the outpost that would become San Francisco and end with the incredible industrial growth of the WWII home front. In between are gold-hungry ne’er-do-wells, shipwrecks, stagecoach robberies, land-grabbing railroad barons, underground speakeasies, and city-eating earthquakes.
November 4 - SPEAKEASIES & SKYSCRAPERS
Speakers include: (titles of presentations may change)
- John Martini - Underneath/Off Limits Alcatraz
- Arthur Kay - Brief Biographies
Al Jolson - The World's Greatest EntertainerGrace Morley - SF Museum of Modern ArtPolice Chief O'Brien & Captain Charles Goff - ProhibitionFlorence Richardson & Helen Hosmer - The Depression, the General Strike, etc.Fong Wan - Chinese Herbalist in SF and jaw-droppingly amazing personMayor A.J. Rossi - Holding it all together, and the beginning of WW II.
- Steen Comer - Philo Farnsworth & the Invention of TV
- Isolde Honor - 1939 Treasure Island Expo
- Robert Griffing - Liberty Ships/WWII Shipbuilding in Bay Area
- TBD - Spanning the Bay - The Building of the Bridges
The environment for each program will be particapitory and raucous. Doors open at 6:00pm with a pre-reception and viewing of the gallery and collection items in CHS' North Baker Library. After the pre-reception introductions and presentations will commence. There will also be an intermission period from 7:50-8:15pm. The program official ends at 9:30pm.
Details about Location, Bar, and Mechandise:
Cash Bar and Cash Only for Merch Table
Nearest ATMs are on New Montgomery (Bank of America and Chase Bank), Market Street also has a number of ATMs. Walgreens, Tart to Tart, the Metreon, and Target all have functioning ATMs.
The following parking garages are available nearby:
Fifth & Mission Parking Garage, Fifth and Mission Sts.
Museum Parc Garage, 300 Third Street
Moscone Center Garage, 225 Third Street
Hearst Parking Center, 45 Third Street
55 Hawthorne Garage, 55 Hawthorne Street
St. Francis Place Garage, 1 St. Francis and Third Sts.
Jessie Square Parking Garage, 3rd Street at Stevenson
When & Where
California Historical Society
Our mission is to inspire and empower Californians to make the past a meaningful part of their contemporary lives.
The California Historical Society holds one of the richest collections of primary and secondary materials in the state on the social, cultural, economic, and political development of California.
The Gallery provides public access to the collection through changing exhibitions, Tuesday through Sunday, 12:00 to 5:00 p.m.
The North Baker Research Library provides public access to the collection, Wednesday through Friday, 12:00 to 5:00 p.m.