“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
San Francisco in San Francisco City and County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)

Portsmouth Plaza

An Historic Shrine

Portsmouth Plaza Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, February 10, 2014
1. Portsmouth Plaza Marker
Inscription. Named for U.S.S. Portsmouth commanded by Capt. John B. Montgomery, after whom Montgomery Street was named. It was here on the plaza that Capt. Montgomery first raised the American flag near the Mexican adobe custom house on July 9, 1846. This plaza was the center of many early day activities among which were the following:-

First public school building erected 1847, S.W. corner of plaza, where religious services and many public meetings were held.

Dramatic and authoritative announcement of gold discovery made by Sam Brannan on May 11, 1848, who displayed glittering samples to crowds on plaza.

Election of delegates to Monterey Constitutional Convention urged at mass meeting June 12, 1849.

Served as place of refuge for citizens following conflagrations of 1849, 1850, 1851 and 1906.

On July 16, 1849, crowd assembled to organize against depredations of lawless body called "The Hounds."
Memorial services held August 29, 1850, following death of President Zachary Taylor.

First Admission Day celebration held October 29, 1850, following news brought by steamship Oregon that California, on September 9, had become 31st state.

Indignation meeting organized June 1, 1852, to protest against purchase by City Council of Jenny Lind Theatre as City Hall.

Portsmouth Plaza Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, February 10, 2014
2. Portsmouth Plaza Marker
service held for Henry Clay, August 10, 1852.

Colonel E.D. Baker, September 18, 1859, delivered oration over body U.S. Senator David C. Broderick, killed in duel with Chief Justice David S. Terry.

Robert Louis Stevenson spent many hours here during his visit to the city in 1879-1880.
Erected 1950 by California Centennial Commission. (Marker Number CHL 119.)
Location. 37° 47.694′ N, 122° 24.321′ W. Marker is in San Francisco, California, in San Francisco City and County. Marker can be reached from Kearny Street near Washington Street. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 751 Kearny Street, San Francisco CA 94108, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Raising of the American Flag (within shouting distance of this marker); Andrew Smith Hallidie (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of the First Public School in California (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of San Francisco’s First Book Store (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of the Jenny Lind Theatre and San Francisco City Hall (within shouting distance of this
Robert Louis Stevenson Monument image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, January 14, 2014
3. Robert Louis Stevenson Monument
To Remember
Robert Louis

To be honest to be
kind - to earn a little
less – to make
upon the whole a
family happier for
his presence – to
renounce when that
shall be necessary
and not be embittered –
to keep a few
friends but these
without capitulation –
above all on
the same grim
condition to keep
friends with himself
here is a task for
all that a man has
of fortitude and
marker); California Star (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Birthplace of a Great City (about 300 feet away); Home of Benjamen Chinn (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in San Francisco.
More about this marker. This marker is located in Portsmouth Square, opposite the restrooms.
Also see . . .  The Evolution of Portsmouth Square - San Francisco History. The formal christening of Portsmouth square took place July 8, 1846. Prior to that time it had figured only as a plaza, but it was the center of activity in the little town of Yerba Buena, which consisted of about fifty houses between the base of Telegraph Hill and Happy Valley. (Submitted on February 11, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 
Categories. EducationPoliticsWar, Mexican-American
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 322 times since then and 74 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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