This is one amazing footage, an 11-minute uninterrupted shot from a camera affixed to a trolley going down Market Street, San Francisco in April, 1906. 4 days later, an earthquake will destroy most of what you see here and kill 1/5th of the people. You have to also think about how lucky and cosmic you are. Like the rest of us watching this video today, what were the chances on that day that you would ever exist, in any form? Where were you? Elvis Presley’s parents aren’t yet born. Clyde Barrow is not yet born. Bonnie Parker is four years from being born). Al Capone is 7 years old. It boggles the mind who is still a nobody when this was filmed. What gets me are the young, smiling, mischievous kids in the film. Just like any kids. Out in the street, with no texting, computers or video games. Hitching rides on back of cars and trucks. It was still an era of horse drawn carriages and the proliferation of cars. The Titanic has not yet been built. No one has died in WWI. The San Francisco earthquake was in April of that year, obviously it hasn’t happened yet. Many would die who are in this film. I almost feel like weeping for these souls. They didn’t even know that someday a thing called “the internet” where people will take a peek at them in their world for the tiny moment they were in it. I wonder where the man with the big wagon was headed. What was everyone doing? Was it noon? They were on their lunch breaks from work? It boggles the mind that if this film was never filmed on that day by the trolley operator, we never would have known these people ever existed at all.
Amazing San Francisco in 1906