San Francisco History

Seamen's Church Institute

Mayor Taylor Opens Seamen's Institute

Sailor Lads Are Present in Numbers to Enjoy the Occasion


Place Provided Where Seafaring Men May Gather When Ashore

The Seamen's institute at 242 Steuart street was formally opened in its new quarters yesterday afternoon by Mayor Taylor in the presence of 300 visitors. It was a great occasion for the sailor lads, who were present in numbers.

The primary idea of the institute is to provide a safe place for seamen when on shore, and its efforts toward this have met with surprising success. The new structure contains a larger hall which can be used for concerts, meetings or lectures. There are a gymnasium, various rooms devoted to games and other amusements, and a reading and writing room with various divisions.

Prettily decorated in greens and Christmas berries, the hall presented a bright appearance when the mayor rose to speak the words which announced that the institute was formally opened. He was followed by Mr. Hearne, the British consul general, in a few witty remarks, after which Mr. Balfour, the English consul, thanked the citizens of San Francisco for their substantial aid. A telegram from the former consul, Mr. Bennett, conveying hearty best wishes, was read. Bishop Nichols gave a brief summary of the work of the institute from its inception, and the chaplain, Rev. F. Stone, made a stirring appeal for the sailor boys.

H.E. Pennell read a vote of thanks to the mayor for his participation and a blessing was pronounced by the bishop.

The ground and building now owned by the institute cost $65,000 and the little chapel of St. Andrew's belonging to the institute, which was dedicated by the bishop last evening, is the first church to be rebuilt as a whole in the burned district. At the dedication the service of the Church of England was read, the hymns and responses being sung by the Grace church choir.

The following clergy assisted Bishop Nichols, in the service: Rev. F. S. Stone, E. F. Gee, J. P. Turner, J. O. Lincoln, Dr. Evans, L. C. Sanford, Dr. A. E. Bernays of Portland, Ore., S. J. Lee of St. James, D. O. Kelley, city missionary, and P. C. Aoki of the Japanese mission. The dedication was followed by a concert.

Source: San Francisco Call, 8 December 1907, page 36.


Return to San Francisco Genealogy