Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“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)
 

Hicks Engine

 
 
Hicks Engine Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, March 4, 2017
1. Hicks Engine Marker
Captions: (main photo) Interior of the Hicks Work on Howard Street in San Francisco, about 1915.; (engine diagram) 1. Intake/Exhaust valves, 2. Igniter (provides spark, 3. Forward/Reverse lever, 4. Carburetor, 5. Oiler.
Inscription. The Hicks eight-horsepower engine was the most popular power source for San Francisco's "Monterey" fishing boats. Its simple design made for economy, reliability, and ease of maintenance.
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.

BASIC FACTS:
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.
 
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
Hicks Engine (covered) and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, March 4, 2017
2. Hicks Engine (covered) and Marker
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.
 
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); 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); Steam Tug Hercules (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
Hicks Engine image. Click for full size.
By National Park Service
3. Hicks Engine
in San Francisco where it was installed in most Monterey fishing boats.
(Submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, 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 San Jose, 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 San Jose, California.) 
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 20, 2017. This page originally submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 217 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on March 8, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.
Paid Advertisement