This Market Street film has been posted before, maybe adnauseum, butt.... now someone with insight has added sound and appropriate effects to complete modern viewing.
Amazing how brazen early motorists and public had seemingly little regard for each other... early days before educating on road rules
I've seen that clip before, but not with sound. Thanks for posting it!
The trip shown in this clip is done on a pretty flat/level street (Market St.). Being a native Californian and having been raised near San Francisco, I can certainly say that not all streets are like that. Many are steep to very steep, which makes me wonder about sufficient power and, even more important, sufficient brakes. Kinda scary.
Very neat, thanks !!
My God, there's no way I could drive there. I thought they were bad here around Atlanta.
This film is Model T related because all the car noises is said to be Model T and Model A.
Four days later at about 5:30 AM it all changed when the earthquake struck.
Wow! I assume that this was taken prior to April 18th. In the mid-eighties I was in San Francisco and went for breakfast at the Sears restaurant. The host (showing patrons to their tables) was a 105 year old gentleman by the name of Sidney. He was incredibly alert, and spent a couple of hours talking to us about the earthquake. His parents were 14 years old when Lincoln was shot. Sidney was in his mid-20's when the earthquake hit. He talked about the devastation, the fires, and the dynamiting of rows of buildings to prevent the fire from spreading. It is very cool to see how things actually looked at that time.
A lot of Dare Devils..
I read somewhere that the most likely reason this film survived the quake is because it was found in Europe. Apparently, the film was shot on, if I recall correctly, 35mm film which was brand new at the time and there were no local facilities to develop the film nearby. So, it was shipped off to Europe, where there were many locations that had the equipment to develop this new format film.
Another interesting thing that I have heard about this film is that there was no information included with this film when it was found. Apparently, the first thing that helped identify the film was the image of the Embarcadero at the end of the street. It was the only structure in this film that survived the quake.
Given the way the shadows are cast, and the vehicles are dated, experts were able to pinpoint almost exactly the month, day, and time of day that the film was shot.
Some of the information that I have just stated may be way off-base, but this is what I believe I have read about this film.
I welcome corrections or any additional information you may be able to add.
Mike, if you scroll down below the video and hit SHOW MORE it will tell a lot about the history of the film.
Well Dean, that's what happens when you don't take the time to look at the entire post. Which is exactly what happened to me, and why I wound up posting a bunch of wrong information about this film.
Thank you for pointing me, and others, in the right direction. However, it makes me shudder to think that in just four short days after this film was shot, everything you see, and quite possibly most of the people shown, save for the Embarcadero which still stands, would be completely destroyed. Unimaginable.
The closest event we've had in my end of town, to something like that, is the March, 1933 Long Beach earthquake.
That happened nearly 30 years before I was born, but I've been fortunate enough to have had the chance to speak to many of the "Old Timers" that lived through it. One of them had an entire brick driveway at his house in Downey made completely of "1933 Earthquake Brick". They didn't buy a single one. There was so much brick that had fallen away from the storefronts lining Long Beach Boulevard (then called American Avenue) it made it impossible to drive down the street. Notices were placed in the newspaper stating that anyone who wanted the brick to come down and take as much as you could haul.
The 1933 quake paled in comparison to the destruction and death toll of the San Francisco quake.
When around folks suddenly confronted with a Model T, or reviewing some facet of history, I generally find myself feeling like an apologist for people and times long past when "modern folk" offer their opinions, coming as they do, from a 21st century point of view. . .
"Amazing how brazen early motorists and public had seemingly little regard for each other . . . early days before educating on road rules." -
Bob, many thanks for posting this link again in its "new and improved" form with sound. It's well worth seeing often. With all respect, do you really think motorists today have high regard for each other, and are "educated" to obey the rules of the road ?
There are several factors in play as one observes this film. First off is the tendency for the early films to speed up the action to what appears breakneck speed. The reason for this was the necessity to expose sequential frames rapidly enough to produce the illusion of movement, yet film speeds of the time would not quite allow up to thirty frames per second, which is about the norm for a smooth "real time" film. Many early films run around ten frames per second.
Another aspect as one watches the film, is what was pretty readily apprehended by the people on the street as the film was being made - "Hey folks ! Look ! They're making a movie!" Result, at least a couple of motorists took the opportunity to outstrip the streetcar, and appear several times along the route - young daredevils had no problem with the notion of "bullfighting" the streetcar and performing antics in front of the movie camera.
The modern viewer really has no concept of how pedestrians and vehicles negotiated crowded urban thoroughfares in the days of horse-drawn travel. If one is looking to assess what sort of interaction and the sort of respect for "personal space" was the norm in 1906, I'd hazard the same dynamic remains in play on a crowded New York City sidewalk. Folks manage to walk at their own rate, either dawdling or weaving in and out of other pedestrians at a faster pace without anyone being body-slammed, or made to feel threatened.
It would take another four or five years for the automobile to raise the pace of travel to a hazardous rate, where powerful, heavy motor vehicles began to claim streets and roads as their own, to the exclusion of slower moving and lighter pedestrians, animals and vehicles - an ever-ascending spiral which has not yet peaked, and sadly, has resulted in our Model Ts becoming relegated to the "unwanted on roads" list along with pedestrians, bicycles, cattle and horse-drawn vehicles. Last, in 1906, when life expectancy was about 50 years of age at average, you can be sure that well over 90% of the population viewed in that film is very young and agile . . . not one obese person in sight.
Last, I'd like to ask permission to appropriate that wonderful phrase "Amazin' how brazen" !! That's simply GOT to be used in a country song sometime !
Has this film been reversed? Looks like all the cars are right hand drive. Would this be correct?
Up to 1912-14, possibly the majority of motorcars were right hand drive.
Wow! I had never seen this footage before. It is amazing no one was hit. The fact that it was filmed just before the earthquake is even more impressive. I had always known that pedestrians owned the street before cars. Some people were walking faster than the cars and even some kids were hitching rides on the back.