Van Ness Avenue auto row, San Francisco, Ca. Automobile showrooms were also built in places close to, though not on, Van Ness Avenue. The most prominent of these by far was the Pierce-Arrow showroom at 1001 Polk Street, at the corner of Geary, built in 1912-1913. The Pierce-Arrow was one of the top luxury cars in the U.S. It remained an auto showroom for this brand and for Reo into the 1930s. Today the building is a transitional shelter for the homeless. The Pierce-Arrow name still exists in the building's facade.
Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco, Ca. This building at 800 Van Ness Ave. was a showroom for the short-lived Mark Motor Co. in 1921. They were distributors for Elgin and Dupont automobiles. Beautiful ghost sign on the back of the building with art deco flourishes and Egyptian pyramid motiff, which was popular at that time. The top of the sign says "Elgin Six" (within 3 pyramids), the latest model six-cylinder Elgin automobile. At the bottom are the company's locations: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland, Fresno, Boise, Spokane. The vertical ghost on the left that overlaps it is for the Pioneer Motor Bearing Co. which occupied the building beginning in 1923. Pioneer manufactured motor bearings, shims, bolts and nuts.
San Francisco view South on Van Ness Avenue (at Green St.) after the 1906 earthquake and before the fire approached. Photo by JB Monaco. Water mains are destroyed; St. Brigid Church in background. The East side of Van Ness Ave (left) was dynamited a block deep to create a fire break and finally stop the fire from spreading to the Western Addition and Cow Hollow.
© Joseph Greco