San Francisco

Then And Now: Lincoln Way In Photos

As the southern boundary for Golden Gate Park,  Lincoln Way is one of the fastest ways to cross the avenues between Kezar Stadium and Ocean Beach. With help from SFMTA's Historical Photo collection, we've taken a look at how this thoroughfare has changed (and how it's remained the same).

Lincoln Way between 3rd & 4th Avenue, 1911 and today

Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives 

Originally called H Street when east-west streets used letters for names, Lincoln Way connected the Upper Haight to the road houses on the Great Highway. With the new Golden Gate Park on one side and near-endless sand dunes on the other, the Park and Ocean Railroad conveyed passengers through the Outside Lands out to the edge of the continent. 

In 1909, H Street became Lincoln Way during a citywide street renaming project. Several smaller streets had been named after the 16th president, but those smaller streets were renamed after the more prominent H Street was rechristened.

Lincoln Way & 12th Avenue, 1905 and today

Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives 

"H Street and the railroad was the first route that allowed the common San Franciscan to travel to the Great Highway and Ocean Beach. Other than that, you needed your own horse and buggy or automobile to get out there," said David Gallagher of the Western Neighborhoods Project. "It showed people that it wasn't just a wasteland out there, and eventually led to the development of the Outer Sunset."

Lincoln Way & 7th Avenue, 1910 and today

 Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives

In 1923, allegedly unlucky 13th Avenue was renamed for Gen. Frederick Funston, the commander of the Presidio during the 1906 earthquake. For many years, SFMTA maintained a streetcar storage yard near the intersection of H Street and 13th. Modern Sunsetters know that block today as the location of Andronico's Community Market and the Park West Apartments.

Lincoln Way between 13th & 14th Avenues, 1907 and today

Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives 

Apart from the name change, the removal of the railroad tracks and the undergrounding of electrical utility lines, much of Lincoln Way looks very similar now as it did in its early days.

Lincoln & 8th Avenue, 1910 and today

The sign over the front steps of the building on the left reads "Selva Vista" [Forest View] and can still be seen today.

Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives

Lincoln Way between 8th & 9th Avenues, 1917 and today

Many of the buildings that faced the park 100 years ago are still there today, facing many of the same trees. On the left side of the composite photo below, The Little Shamrock, SF's second-oldest bar, can be seen.

Original photo courtesy SFMTA Photo Archives 

Thanks again to SFMTA for allowing us to use images from their historical photo archive. If you have historical photos of the Inner Sunset you'd like us to use in future Then/Now articles, please contact [tips] at hoodline [dot] com

Lincoln Way

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