Museum of the City of San Francisco
By Subject
By Year
The Gift Shop

The aftermath of the Great Fire brought forth new names and places for the survivors to learn. Most of the familiar landmarks were swept away by the fire, and in their place were such names as Camp Forrest, or Cross Hospital. One hospital for the injured was named Curtin Hospital, after Joseph A. Curtin of the U.S.S. Pike. As Lt. Freeman pointed out in his report, this temporary hospital, of which there were dozens or scores, was established by the sailor after the fire. The hospital was housed in what is now the St. Francis Lutheran Church on Church St. between Market and Duboce Ave. The church is notable because it was built in 1905, and damaged during the 1989 earthquake. Repairs were completed in 2000.

Cross Hospital, by the way, was named for Dr. Charles V. Cross, who established his free clinic at 2007 Divisidero Street immediately after the earthquake. Camp Forrest was the refugee encampment established at Market and Laguna streets, by Jim Forrest, on what is now the campus the University of California Extension Services.

Henry Durant School,
Turk St. between Webster and Buchanan Sts.

San Francisco, Cal, May 6, 1906

C.F. Goodrich
Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy,
Commander in Chief, Pacific Squadron,
San Francisco, Cal.
Dear Sir:

I have your communication of the 5th inst. relative to the permanent maintainance of the Curtin Hospital on Church St. near 14th, and beg to advise that our Health Comission appreciates the excellent services rendered by Dr. Waller and Miss Hansen, in charge of that hospital.

In recognition of this, I have made arrangements to have a permanent emergency hospital established in charge of Dr. Waller. I was not aware that the hospital was known officially as the "Curtin Hospital." In view of the fact that it was situated close to Duboce Ave. and Duboce Park, which thoroughfare and public square was named in honor of a gallant officer of the First California Regiment of Infantry [Victor Duboce], I suggested that the hospital be known as Duboce hospital. However, this has not been done officially, and if it is your desire to have it designated as the "Curtin Hospital," under the sponsorship of the U.S. Navy, I shall hasten to have it so named. Hoping to have an early reply in regard to the latter, I remain,

very respectfully,

(signed) Dr. D. Ragan

Health Officer

Return to top of page