I know it's trendy to make lists of things that are long gone from cities these days, but if you really want to take a look at something cool and absent from San Francisco now, Western Neighborhoods Project is one of the best local resources around. The non-profit is comprised of tireless history buffs who acquired a large collection of negatives of fascinating old SF images originating in the San Francisco Assessor's Office which they then digitized and donated to the History Center at the San Francisco Public Library.
David Gallagher from the Western Neighborhoods Project recently reached out to share a selection of buildings that have been demolished since 1951. These photos offer a great snapshot into this city's past – especially when it comes to stylish signage.
The top photo was featured in an earlier series David curated for us of vintage photographs from The Mission. It's a shot of 2800 Mission St. before the BART station moved into that corner.
Check out that neon – even in black and white it's really cool. Amazing storefront design for Zukor's, a department store that used to stand at 885 Market St. (at 5th).
These next two photographs are old gas stations, and if you look closely you also get a hint of the cars people were driving in 1951. I don't even want to know how little gas cost back then. The photo above is from 2290 Turk and the one below (with what looks like a vintage dairy ad) is from 4401 Mission St.
And the Por-Boy Drive-In was at Adair & South Van Ness, where they served Acme Beer, Arden Ice Cream, steak, and hot dogs.
For more black and white shots of demolished buildings around the city, check out the full list collected from the San Francisco Assessor's Office by Western Neighborhoods Project here.