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Light house and Wardens house on Alcatraz Island. Alcatraz, aka "The Rock", was first established as a military fort in the 1850s by the US Army. During the Civil War, it became a military prison and in 1934, a federal maximum security prison for high-risk civilian prisoners. Out of 36 inmates attempting to escape, none succeeded. In 1963, due to the inability to restore & maintain it, the prison was closed. San Francisco, CA.

from eBay

Robert vance california half plate ambrotype in country life dag case

from The Big Event

Our SF: Here’s what Market Street looked like in the 1800s

R.C Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum and St. Patrick's Church. Market between 2nd and 3rd streets; view from Kearny (1854) Wyland Stanley Collection, via @sfchronicle

After one of the frequent fires that ravaged San Francisco, in May 1850, the mercantile firm of E. Mickle & Co. purchased the General Harrison to serve as a “storeship,” or floating warehouse. In 1851, however, San Francisco again caught fire: engulfing whole streets, the flames crumbled supposedly “fire proof” brick buildings and swept under the wharves. More than 2,000 buildings were lost, including the storeships Niantic, Apollo, and General Harrison.