THIS IS REALLY UNBELIEVABLE! NO TRAFFIC LIGHTS, NO
This is a fascinating movie. A camera was mounted on the front of a street car in San Francisco 104 years ago (1906). Perhaps
the oldest "home movie" that you will ever see! Look at the hats the ladies were wearing and the long dresses.
Some of the cars had the steering wheels on the right side. I wonder when they standardized on the left?
Sure were still a lot of horse drawn vehicles in use. Mass transit looked like the way to get around. Looks like everybody had the right of way.
Watch the beginning carefully. At the 33 second mark and immediately after an oncoming trolley clears the screen, a well dressed
policeman walks across the street from left to right. Notice his right hand that he's carrying a truncheon (26 inch police baton) and
although he appears walking his beat, he looks ready to use it. Imagine the police of today walking down the street carrying a 26 inch
club in their hand...??? also notice every man is wearing a suit
This film was "lost" for many years. It was the first 35mm film ever. It was taken by camera mounted on the front of a cable
car. The number of automobiles is staggering for 1906. The clock tower at the end of Market Street at the Embarcadero wharf is still there.
How many "street cleaning" people were employed to pick up after the horses? Talk about going green!
This film was originally thought to be from 1905 until David Kiehn with the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum figured out
exactly when it was shot. From New York trade papers announcing the film showing to the wet streets from recent heavy rainfall & shadows
indicating time of year & actual weather and conditions on historical record, even when the cars were registered (he even knows who owned them
and when the plates were issued!). It was filmed only four days before the Great California Earthquake of April 18th 1906 and
shipped by train to NY for processing.
Get a load of this fascinating 104 year old film of San Francisco just prior to the earthquake.