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“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)
 

William Alexander Leidesdorff

1810 – 1848

 
 
William Alexander Leidesdorff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 8, 2014
1. William Alexander Leidesdorff Marker
Inscription. Between his arrival in the sleepy trading post of Yerba Buena in 1841 and his untimely death seven years later, William Alexander Leidesdorff – the son of a Danish Jewish sugar planter and a black plantation worker in St. Croix – cemented his legacy as one of San Francisco’s most remarkable founding fathers.

Among his fascinating list of achievements:

City Treasurer • Vice-Consul of the United States to Mexico • Launched the first steamboat to sail the bay (The Sitka) • Built and operated the city’s first hotel (The City Hotel) • Donated the land to build California’s first public school • Member of San Francisco’s first town council • Organized California’s first horse race • Financed the U.S. military’s California campaign in the Mexican American War. • Widely considered to be the United States’ first African-American millionaire.


This statue, sculpted by Bay Area artist Bruce Hasson, pays homage to a true San Francisco visionary who defined the unique spirit of the City by the Bay: innovative, bold, generous and civic-minded.
 
Location. 37° 47.528′ N, 122° 24.096′ W. Marker is in San Francisco, California, in San Francisco City and County. Marker is at the intersection of Pine Street and
William Alexander Leidesdorff Marker and Statue image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 8, 2014
2. William Alexander Leidesdorff Marker and Statue
Liedesdorff Street, on the right on Pine Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 344 Pine Street, San Francisco CA 94104, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. “The Orient Building” (a few steps from this marker); The Old Chamber of Commerce Building (a few steps from this marker); Bank of California (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Site of First California State Fair (about 400 feet away); Union Bank Building (about 500 feet away); Site of What Cheer House (about 600 feet away); a different marker also named William Alexander Leidesdorff (about 600 feet away); San Francisco Bay Shore Line Marker (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in San Francisco.
 
Also see . . .  William Alexander Leidesdorff - Virtual Museum of the City of San Francisco. Greater tribute may not be given the first pioneer of Negro origin who came to San Francisco, made his contribution and passed on. But the citizen of today—of whatever racial, creed or national origin, migrant like himself—may walk “The City’s” streets with dignity, knowing that Leidesdorff helped immeasurably to establish this right, a hundred years ago. (Submitted on April 18, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.)
Leidesdorff Place image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 8, 2014
3. Leidesdorff Place
The maker and statue are at the corner.
 
 
Categories. African AmericansSettlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 25, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 18, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 376 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 18, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.
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