In the past, San Francisco was Yerba Buena (Good Grass), a Spanish fisherman’s village with 400 inhabitants, a natural harbor. Approximately 75 years later, in 1849 when the western coastal region became US territory, the city was called San Francisco, after the old Franciscan mission nearby. The city expanded rapidly – the gold rush of 1849 gave birth to a migration so rapid, that seekers almost fell into the Pacific in search of a new life. The population grew to over 300,000 inhabitants.
They came from the west, and east – thousands of people fleeing the famine in China to work hard on the railroad, which was built to link the remote town and the rest of the country, a project completed in 1869. Meanwhile, Chinese workers were suffering great injustice. Immigrants have arrived in Japan, but they have created a separate colony, opened their own business in the Western Addition district, later known as Japan-town.
Chinatown and Japan-town are now the largest Asian enclaves outside Asia, and today the city is proud of the diversity of population and political tolerance.
The devastating earthquake of 1906 changed the city’s horizons, the Victorian wooden houses bursting into flames- only a few survived and is now famous four its “Painted Ladies” of Alamo Square.
But San Francisco was rebuilt. Replacing horse-drawn wagons crossing the Russian and Nob hills, cars have changed the way people travel in the late nineteenth century. Inauguration of the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937 opened new horizons of cooperation between man and nature, it soon became the symbol of a city that has everything.
The modern city retains the relationship between materialism and money on the one hand and, on the other hand, revolutionary ideas and policies directed towards progress. Bohemian movement occurred in 1950 in Little Italy in North Beach neighborhood, has helped increase the city’s artistic importance. Current cultural norms against the Haight Ashbury neighborhood flourished (now called just Haight) during the 1967 Summer of Love and homosexual communities have fought for a place of their own, finding it in the streets and Pelk Castro, where they managed to take a open and peaceful life.
Internet industry of the city saw a rapid increase, recovering now from the decreased activity in the same area. San Francisco is the financial capital of the west coast, is an important first gateway to the Pacific, although the vessels now prefer to head for Oakland.
Anyway, tourism is a the industry that brings millions of dollars each year in the city. The bay, which is right between the Golden Gate Bridge to the west and San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge to the east, home to 14 small islands, including Alcatraz, Angel, Yerba Buena and Treasure. They are the perfect destination for a getaway from the crowded city.