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Yerba Buena Island
Yerba Buena Island (Spanish for "Isla Yerba Buena")sits in the San Francisco Bay between San Francisco and Oakland, California. The Yerba Buena Tunnel runs through its center and connects the western and eastern spans of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge. It has had several other names over the decades: Sea Bird Island, Wood Island, and Goat Island. The island may have been named after the pueblo of Yerba Buena, which was named for the plant of the same name that was abundant in the area. The plant's English and Spanish common name, Yerba buena, is an alternate form of the Spanish hierba buena (literally meaning 'good herb'), generally used to describe local species of the mint family.
The island is currently part of District 6 of the City and County of San Francisco. According to the United States Census Bureau, Yerba Buena Island and Treasure Island together have a land area of 2.334 km2 (0.901 sq mi) with a total population of 2,500 as of the 2010 census.
Today the military reservation southeast of the Yerba Buena Tunnel belongs to the United States Coast Guard (USCG) District Eleven. The US Coast Guard Sector San Francisco – Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) tower is located on Signal Road Bldg. 278 atop the peak of the island. The US Coast Guard Sector San Francisco Headquarters is co-located with US Coast Guard Station San Francisco on Healy Avenue @ Fresnel Way at water-level on the southeast coast of the island. The Coast Guard Aids to Navigation San Francisco has a navigational buoy repair facility on Fresnel Way. The USCG Senior Officers' residences are in Quarters A, B, C, 8 and 9 off of Hillcrest Road on the hill atop the USCG base. During the summer of 2011, the Department of Homeland Security / United States Coast Guard opened the new SAFE Port Act (2006) Interagency Operations Center (IOC at Bldg. 100 site on Spindrift Circle) on the US Coast Guard Sector / Station San Francisco base. The IOC houses the VTS, WatchKeeper and the US Coast Guard Sector San Francisco Command Center together in one building.
The island's name dates to the Portola Expedition, appearing on Ayala's 1775 chart of the bay as "Isla de Alcatraces", or "island of the pelicans", for the birds who were abundant there.Later Frederick William Beechey, an English naval officer and explorer, transferred the name "Alcatraz Island" to the rock which bears the name of the federal penitentiary. The name "la Ysla de la Yerba Buena" was given by early Spanish colonists as early as 1795. Yerba buena can refer to any of a number of fragrant herbal plants. In this instance, it referred to the native plant Clinopodium douglasii which was found growing in abundance around the Bay Area. The plant has a fragrance like spearmint, also commonly referred to as yerba buena, so the name was applied to Clinopodium douglasii as well. It isn't clear from any record if the island was named for the herb directly, or for the nearby cove and settlement of Yerba Buena.
The Isla de Yerba Buena was granted to one of the sons or grandsons of Joaquin Isidro de Castro (b.1732, Sinaloa), progenitor of one of the largest Californio families.
Officially, the island was Yerba Buena Island until 1895, when on a decision by the United States Board on Geographic Names, it was changed to Goat Island. During the gold rush, a large number of goats were pastured on the island, and the name "Goat Island" came into popular use.It was changed back to Yerba Buena Island on June 3, 1931.
The idea of a military post on Yerba Buena Island originated during the American Civil War, when it was feared a raiding Confederate warship could slip past Fort Point and Alcatraz Island during a foggy night. However, it was not until the 1870s that Army Post Camp Yerba Buena Island (a.k.a. Army Post Camp Decature a.k.a. Army Post at Goat island a.k.a. US Engineer Depot, Yerba Buena Island and a.k.a. US Quartermaster Depot, Yerba Buena Island) by Navy Road and North Gate Road was completed, including a fog signal and octagonal lighthouse called Yerba Buena Light (1875) that remain today at the end of Hillcrest Road. In 1891, the United States Army Corps of Engineers built a Torpedo Station / Shed / Storehouse / Assembly building (Building 262) at the end of Army Road by North Gate Road. The torpedoes were actually floating mines that could be placed in the bay via cable for defense against intruding enemy vessels. The Torpedo Station was abandoned in the 1930s but still stands today (hidden underneath the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge) listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Just before the turn of the 20th century, the first U.S. Naval Training Station on the Pacific Coast was established on the north east side of the island by 1st Street and North Gate Road. Quarters One, also known as the Admiral Nimitz House near the intersection of Whiting Way and Garden Way, was built about 1900 as the Naval Training Station commandant's residence and is among the eight surviving officers' residences in the historic district.Its Classic Revival style, fashionable for private residences in the Bay Area at the time, was unusual for naval base housing. In 1963, Nimitz and his wife moved to the Nimitz House, where he died in 1966. His funeral was at the base chapel on Treasure Island and he was buried with full military honors at Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno.
The training station closed after World War I. Although the training station closed, the Navy maintained presence with the stationary receiving ship USS Boston (1884), later renamed USS Despatch (IX-2) (1940), anchored in harbor through World War II.
During World War II, Yerba Buena Island fell under the jurisdiction of Treasure Island Naval Station, main headquarters of the 12th Naval District inside Building One. Built on the shoals of Yerba Buena Island, the 403-acre (163 ha) Treasure Island was a Works Progress Administration project in the 1930s. After hosting the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition, the United States Navy deemed Treasure Island an ideal location for transporting people and machines to the Pacific theater, and on April 17, 1942, established Treasure Island Naval Station (for surface ships and submarines) and as an Auxiliary Air Facility airfield (for airships, blimps, dirigibles, planes and seaplanes) which also included a portion of Yerba Buena Island. Quarters One became the residence of the Commander in Chief, US Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT). Several other buildings used by the Naval Station during World War II also remain on the island, including the Senior Officers' Quarters in Quarters A, B, C, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9. Buildings 83, 205 and 230 were support facilities to the senior officers' quarters.
In 1996, the naval base and the Presidio of San Francisco were decommissioned, and opened to public control, under stipulations. Quarters One by Whiting Way and the other Senior Officers' Quarter by Garden Way are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The SFPD took over law enforcement jurisdiction of non-USCG parcels of Yerba Buena Island. SFFD Fire Station 48 on Treasure Island took over medical rescue & fire protection of Yerba Buena Island (including USCG Sector / Station San Francisco) and portions of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge.
Located west of the island was "Blossom Rock", a treacherous submerged rock that lay only 5 feet (1.5 m) below the surface of the water at low tide. Blossom Rock was discovered and named in 1826 by Captain Beechey of HMS Blossom. Beechey noted that the rock could be avoided by aligning the northern tip of Yerba Buena Island with two especially large redwood trees growing in the hills above Oakland as one entered the bay. These redwoods were located in what is now Roberts Regional Recreation Area, near the "Madrone" picnic area; the area is marked with a historical marker. The "Navigation Trees" were logged in about 1851, exacerbating the danger of Blossom Rock. The top of the rock was blown up in 1870, and another section removed by blasting in the early 1930s.[ citation needed ]
There are three parks located on Yerba Buena Island. Hill Park near Treasure Island Road and Macalla Road which used to be a military cemetery until the high visibility traffic approach to the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition necessitated its removal and transfer of graves to the San Francisco National Cemetery in the Presidio of San Francisco. Also located on the island are Blue Park and Tower Park.
Two water reservoirs are located on the island and provide water storage for use on the island and for fire hydrant service.
As of 2007, after the City of San Francisco received authority over the island from the US Navy, a small community of 40 households, comprising about 100 people, had developed on the island.
In 2011, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved a 20-year development of the island that aims to build two neighborhoods with up to 8,000 residences of which 25 percent are designated for affordable housing.
In 2015, the City of San Francisco evictedthe majority of residents to make room for the development. Yerba Buena Island residents were offered either to be paid roughly $5,000 and move off the island or move into an apartment on Treasure Island. Roughly two thirds of the residents chose to be relocated to Treasure Island.
In his book Two Years Before the Mast , published in 1840, Richard Henry Dana, Jr. mentions in the last chapter, actually a postscript chapter added 20 years later, that his ship of the 1830s voyage anchored "between a small island, called Yerba Buena, and a gravel beach in a little bight or cove of the same name".
San Francisco Bay is a shallow estuary in the U.S. state of California. It is surrounded by a contiguous region known as the San Francisco Bay Area, and is dominated by the large cities of San Francisco, San Jose, and Oakland.
Chester William Nimitz was a fleet admiral of the United States Navy. He played a major role in the naval history of World War II as Commander in Chief, US Pacific Fleet, and Commander in Chief, Pacific Ocean Areas, commanding Allied air, land, and sea forces during World War II.
Clinopodium douglasii, or yerba buena, is a rambling aromatic herb of western and northwestern North America, ranging from maritime Alaska southwards to California. The plant takes the form of a sprawling, mat-forming perennial, and is especially abundant close to the coast. The name "yerba buena" derives from Spanish for "good herb" and is applied to various other plants. Molecular evidence places the species within the Clinopodium complex rather than Micromeria.
The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge, known locally as the Bay Bridge, is a complex of bridges spanning San Francisco Bay in California. As part of Interstate 80 and the direct road between San Francisco and Oakland, it carries about 260,000 vehicles a day on its two decks. It has one of the longest spans in the United States.
Treasure Island is an artificial island in the San Francisco Bay and a neighborhood in the City and County of San Francisco. Built in 1936–37 for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition, the island's World's Fair site is a California Historical Landmark. Buildings there have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and the historical Naval Station Treasure Island, an auxiliary air facility, are designated in the Geographic Names Information System.
The history of the city of San Francisco, California, and its development as a center of maritime trade, were shaped by its location at the entrance to a large natural harbor. San Francisco is the name of both the city and the county; the two share the same boundaries. Only lightly settled by European-Americans at first, after becoming the base for the gold rush of 1849 the city quickly became the largest and most important population, commercial, naval, and financial center in the American West. San Francisco was devastated by a great earthquake and fire in 1906 but was quickly rebuilt. The San Francisco Federal Reserve Branch opened in 1914, and the city continued to develop as a major business city throughout the first half of the 20th century. Starting in the later half of the 1960s, San Francisco became the city most famous for the hippie movement. In recent decades, San Francisco has become an important center of finance and technology. The high demand for housing, driven by its proximity to Silicon Valley, and the limited availability has led to the city being one of America's most expensive places to live. San Francisco is currently ranked 16th on the Global Financial Centres Index.
Coast Guard Base Alameda also referred to as Coast Guard Island is an artificial island in the Oakland Estuary between Oakland and Alameda, California. It is home to several major United States Coast Guard commands and cutters, including the Coast Guard Pacific Area. It is one of the largest Coast Guard bases on the West Coast. From 1942 until 1982, the island was the site of the Coast Guard's recruiting training center, enlisting and training hundreds of thousands of Coast Guardsmen including many of the 214,239 who served in the Pacific and European Theaters of World War II.
The Oakland Long Wharf was an 11,000-foot railroad wharf and ferry pier along the east shore of San Francisco Bay located at the foot of Seventh Street in West Oakland. The Oakland Long Wharf was built, beginning 1868, by the Central Pacific Railroad on what was previously Oakland Point. Beginning November 8, 1869, it served as the west coast terminus of the First Transcontinental Railroad. In the 1880s, Southern Pacific Railroad took over the CPRR, extending it and creating a new ferry terminal building with the official station name Oakland Pier. The entire structure became commonly and popularly called the Oakland Mole.
The Golden Gate International Exposition (GGIE), held at San Francisco's Treasure Island, was a World's Fair celebrating, among other things, the city's two newly built bridges. The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge opened in 1936 and the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937. The exposition opened from February 18, 1939, through October 29, 1939, and from May 25, 1940, through September 29, 1940.
William Bernard was a 19th-century sailor, miner and resident of San Francisco, better known as the notorious "Barnacle Bill" of American yore whose fictional exploits are chronicled in the ribald drinking song "Barnacle Bill the Sailor" — itself adapted from "Bollocky Bill the Sailor", a traditional folk song originally titled "Abraham Brown".
Yerba Buena Lighthouse is a lighthouse in California, United States, in the San Francisco Bay on Yerba Buena Island, California
Roberts Regional Recreation Area (RRRA) is an area adjacent to Redwood Regional Park located in Alameda County next to Oakland, CA and is part of the East Bay Regional Parks (EBRPD). It is across Skyline Drive from the City of Oakland's Joaquin Miller Park. Kaiser Aluminum and Chemical Corp. adopted Roberts Park in 1979, under the newly-developed Adopt-a-Park program, which promised continued funding. This was the first park in EBRPD to be so adopted.
The SS Arcadia Victory was a Victory ship built during World War II for cargo shipping. She was launched by the California Shipbuilding Company on 1 July 1944 and completed on 22 September 1944. The ship's United States Maritime Commission designation was VC2- S- AP3, hull number 41.
The Treasure Island Development is a 405-acre (164 ha) major redevelopment project under construction on Treasure Island and parts of Yerba Buena Island in San Francisco Bay between San Francisco and Oakland, within San Francisco city limits. The Treasure Island Development Authority (TIDA) is a nonprofit organization formed to oversee the economic development of the former naval station. Treasure Island's development was set to break ground during mid-2012. However, on April 12, 2013, The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the deal has collapsed, with the Chinese investors from China Development Bank and China Railway Construction Corporation withdrawing from the project. The Treasure Island Project is now being developed by a joint venture between Lennar Corporation and Kenwood Investments. The development is expected to cost US$1.5 billion.
Yerba Buena was the original name of the settlement that later became San Francisco, California. Located near the northeastern end of the San Francisco Peninsula, between the Presidio of San Francisco and the Mission San Francisco de Asís, it was originally intended as a trading post for ships visiting San Francisco Bay. The settlement was arranged in the Spanish style around a plaza that remains as the present day Portsmouth Square.
Naval Station Treasure Island is a former United States Navy facility that operated on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay from 1942 to 1997.
HMS Blossom was an 18-gun Cormorant-class sloop-of-war. She was built in 1806 and is best known for the 1825–1828 expedition under Captain Beechey to the Pacific Ocean. She explored as far north as Point Barrow, Alaska, the furthest point into the Arctic any non-Inuit had been at the time. She was finally broken up in 1848.
The Yerba Buena Tunnel, also known as the Yerba Buena Island Tunnel, is a highway tunnel in San Francisco, California. It is the part of San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge complex that crosses Yerba Buena Island. The Yerba Buena Tunnel carries ten lanes of Interstate 80 (I-80) on two decks, connecting the two component spans of the Bay Bridge, the western suspension span and the eastern self-anchored suspension span. At the opening of the Bay Bridge in 1936, it was the world's largest-bore tunnel.
USCGC Tern (WPB-87343) is an 87-foot (27 m) long Marine Protector-class coastal patrol boat of the United States Coast Guard stationed on Yerba Buena Island in San Francisco, California. Built by Bollinger Shipyards in Lockport, Louisiana and commissioned in 2002, Tern is a multi-mission platform capable of performing search and rescue (SAR), law enforcement (LE), and fisheries patrols, as well as drug interdiction and illegal alien interdiction duties up to 200 miles off shore spanning from Mendocino County, California south to the Mexico–United States border.
Blossom Rock was a serious navigational hazard to sailing ships entering or leaving San Francisco Bay in the 19th century. It was formally reported by Captain F. Beechey of the Royal Navy ship HMS Blossom in 1827.
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