Street names in sidewalks

03/12/15 - posted by John Martini

There's a great photo on Shorpy.com taken at the corner of Arguello & Geary in 1927. http://www.shorpy.com/node/19321#comments

Prominent in the picture is the name ARGUELLO carved into the concrete. Familiar as this tradition is to all of us Outsideland-ers, I was curious how it got started.

Local lore has it that the policy of embossing street names started after the '06 unpleasantness when all the street signs and familiar landmarks had been destroyed, and a permanent solution to navigating the streets was needed. Makes sense, since I interviewed several fire & 'quake survivors who mentioned how disorienting it was to find their way through the featureless ruins.

So, I query this group: are embossed street names a vestige of the Great Fire and Earthquake?

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