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August 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Hello to the cloud and here we go again. The Fall semester has begun! From here on out there will regular posts (at least once a week) onĀ GildedĀ Empire.

This semester I will be developing a chapter focused on the urban political and social history of San Francisco in 1897-1898, but more specifically on the “social imagination” of the city and its participating inhabitants. Several things strike me in this timeframe. The first being the first significant change of the San Francisco City Charter during this period, the other being the 50th anniversary of John Marshal’s discovery of gold on the American River. These two become more interesting when juxtaposed with the foreshadowing of the Spanish American War and the expanding American empire. What does it mean to be a San Franciscan in 1897-98? And did this urban identity change or evolve after the beginning of the Spanish-American War? How was the anniversary of the discovery of gold inform the urban San Franciscan identity? And how did these ideas inform the major political movements of the city and the state?

These questions I will be addressing in the coming weeks. Any comments and suggestions are always welcome.

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