San Francisco in San Francisco City and County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Bay Area led the nation in production of heavy duty four-stroke marine gas engines. James L. Hicks, one of two dozen local manufacturers, built his first engine in 1910. The early availability of gasoline engines led to new designs in powered fishing boats and small tugs.
The Hicks engine was hand-started by spinning the flywheel. The spark was generated by a mechanically driven "make and break" igniter instead of a spark plug and distributor.
Builder: Hicks Engine Sales Company
Date of Construction: circa 1925
Engine Type: Four Stroke Cycle, gasoline (or distillate)
Output: Approximately 8 horsepower at 350 RPM
Displacement: 7-1/2" stroke by 6-1/2" bore (799 cc)
Cooling System: Direct saltwater
Erected by U.S. Department of the Interior. National Park Service, San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park.
Topics. This historical marker Industry & Commerce. A significant historical year for this entry is 1924.
Location. 37° 48.605′ N, 122° 25.359′ W. Marker is in San Francisco, California, in San Francisco City and County. Marker can be reached from Hyde Street near Jefferson Street, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2950 Hyde Street, San Francisco CA 94109, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Main Fiferail... (a few steps from this marker); Steering the Ship... (a few steps from this marker); Scow Schooner Alma (a few steps from this marker); The Carpenter Shop... (within shouting distance of this marker); Balclutha (within shouting distance of this marker); The Deckhouse (within shouting distance of this marker); Workin' on the Railroad (within shouting distance of this marker); Towing in the Open Ocean (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in San Francisco.
More about this marker. The Hicks engine, part of the San Francisco Maritime Nation Historical Park, is located on the Hyde Street Pier at the bottom of Hyde Street.
Also see . . .
1. Hicks Engine Works - Social Network and Archival Context. By 1910, Hicks Engine Works was a notable part of the drive to produce and manufacture gasoline engines in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Hicks 8-h.p. single cylinder four-stroke engine was popular with fishermen, particularly along Fishermen's Wharf (Submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
2. Antique Marine Gas Engine - 1913 Hicks 6HP - YouTube. Video of an operational Hicks engine. (Submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
3. Hicks Marine Engine Archival Collection - National Park Service. Say the words "potato, potato, potato" and you will hear the sound and rhythm of a Hicks marine engine circa 1910 through 1950. ...the gasoline engine used most often during the first half of the 20th century in Monterey fishing boats along San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf, the West Coast and Pacific Basin.
Location, location, location - San Francisco was an epicenter of gasoline engine manufacturing and production because of its proximity to the developing West Coast. In the first half of the 20th century, California was home to more than two dozen engine builders including Hicks Iron Works in San Francisco (Grayson, 1994). (Submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
Credits. This page was last revised on March 20, 2017. It was originally submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 309 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.