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Presidio Gateways: Views of a National…

Presidio Gateways: Views of a National Landmark at San Francisco's…

by Robert Glenn Ketchum, Delphine Hirasuna (Text)

Other authors: Linda Butler (Photographer), Lyle Gomes (Contributor), Robert G. Kennedy (Afterword), Mary Swisher (Photographer), Brenda Tharp (Contributor)

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This book is a neat record of things you can see during a Presidio visit. The style of photography is very effective. Brings back memories of past visits and thoughts of what might have been. I found this book to be a good conversation starter with house guests.

I think San Francisco is my favorite city to visit. An incredible number of sites and activities to see within a couple hours travel radius of the city. If the SF area cost of living were not so high, I would love to consider moving to the city. Que sera sera.

The history of the Presidio is captivating. I absolutely love the panoramic views and historic buildings of the area. Couple these views with the cool rolling fog and you will be entranced. One of my cautions I had about getting out of the army in the early 1990's was the small chance of an assignment to the Presidio. However, a couple of years later they started its closure process. While it was still under army control, it was a neat place to visit with a military ID card.

I always thought the Officer's Club was a unique place. Currently it houses the Presidio Museum which is very interesting to see. Its book store has quite a respectable selection. Walking out to the parking lot in front of the O-Club and look straight forward to the North: you can see the San Francisco Bay and the the tops of the Golden Gate Bridge. Below are the parade fields that once contained formations of thousands of past soldiers soon to be shipped off overseas to conflicts. Hidden to your left is the cemetery dating back to the civil war and before. Behind you are the vegetated hills containing 2 different golf courses, a load of former housing buildings and many winding roads. To the right lays the heart of SF including Fisherman's Wharf and Chinatown. Just out of sight is Alcatraz. The O-Club was a central part of the movie, The Presidio. Additionally, one episode of Ghosthunters was done at the O-Club.

I love the concrete bunker complex throughout the site. Reminds of other similar complexes in NW Oregon and around the Pudget Sound in Washington.

The view of the officer's row of historic housing near the Golden Gate Bridge just above the Fort Point access road is captivating. The book contains several photos of this area.

During a future visit to the Presidio we are are planning on bringing our bikes in order to spend a dedicated day riding around seeing the old officer housing, the historic cemetery and more bunkers. The hilly vegetated topography at the north end of the SF peninsula over looking the Golden Gate Bridge is amazing. Just think... 150 years ago the land was a barren sand covered point. All of the lush vegetation you see now was planted by man (likely soldiers) long ago.

Not in the book, here is a fantastic aerial photo of the Presidio. Hopefully the link stays valid over time.

I know this review is filled with personal comments, but I found while writing this review it was tough to separate out personal commentary from the review of a book that captures the imagination.

Thinking back, I recall actually purchasing this book at the O-Club museum. A neat coffee table book. ( )
  usma83 | Feb 24, 2012 |
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ketchum, Robert Glennprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hirasuna, DelphineTextmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Butler, LindaPhotographersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gomes, LyleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kennedy, Robert G.Afterwordsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Swisher, MaryPhotographersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tharp, BrendaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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