25 October 2012

Free outing to the U.S. Court of Appeals

Photo: Allen Stross, 2006
The tour is full. No more reservations, please.
Thursday, 15 November 2012
U.S. Court of Appeals Building
Seventh & Mission streets
San Francisco
This imposing granite edifice was designed in the 1890s by James Knox Taylor, chief architect for the U.S. Treasury Department, to house the federal courts and the main San Francisco post office. When it opened in 1905, Sunset magazine called it the Versailles of the West.
The tour, arranged by BAHA board member Sally Sachs, is an opportunity to view this opulent building, discover its history and architecture, and learn about the functioning of the court. Senior Circuit Judge John T. Noonan, Jr. will receive tour goers in his chambers, rarely seen by the public.
See some photos from our 2006 tour of the building.
The tour is free of charge. To reserve your place, please contact BAHA by e-mail.

18 October 2012

Julia Morgan, Architect to Town & Gown

Swimming pool, Berkeley City Club (photo: Daniella Thompson)

In conjunction with the statewide Julia Morgan 2012 Festival, BAHA presents a tour of the architect’s houses designed for Berkeley’s professional and intellectual society, as well as buildings for Berkeley institutions and organizations.

Sunday, 18 November 2012
Noon to 4 pm
$25 general admission; $20 BAHA members

Order tickets online or use the ticket order form to order by mail.

Call (510) 841-2242 or e-mail BAHA to volunteer at the tour or the reception.

Although Julia Morgan grew up in Oakland and lived most of her adult life in San Francisco, Berkeley may justly claim her as an adopted daughter. She attended the University of California, graduating with a Civil Engineering degree in the class of 1894. She was the only woman who attended Bernard Maybeck’s independent course in architectural design, which also included future luminaries Harvey Wiley Corbett, Edward H. Bennett, Lewis P. Hobart, John Bakewell, Jr., Arthur Brown, Jr., G. Albert Lansburgh, and Loring P. Rixford. After four years of studying at the École de Beaux-Arts in Paris and becoming the first woman to earn a certificate there, Miss Morgan returned to the Bay Area, working first for John Galen Howard, the new Supervising Architect for the University of California. In 1904, she opened her own architectural firm, eventually executing some 700 commissions, making her one of the leading designers of her era and California’s first great woman architect.

Much of her work—both residential and institutional—is concentrated in Berkeley. There are clusters of distinguished Julia Morgan residences throughout town and some of her best non-residential commissions, from clubhouses to churches, are on or near the University of California campus.

In coordination with the statewide Julia Morgan 2012 celebration, U.C. Berkeley, and the Landmark Heritage Foundation, BAHA presents a special Fall tour that will sample several Julia Morgan buildings in different styles and uses.

The tour will include several private residences designed by Miss Morgan—now student living groups or utilized for offices, but all retaining much of their original interior and exterior character. There will be an opportunity to view the interior of two of the architect’s buildings on the Berkeley campus, including portions of the large and lavish Hearst Gymnasium for Women (a collaboration with Maybeck) and Girton Hall (Senior Women’s Hall), a small, rustic, lodge that she designed gratis for the women students of the campus a century ago.

Off campus, the Berkeley City Club, Julia Morgan’s local masterpiece, will be open to tour-goers. A reception will be held at tour headquarters, BAHA’s McCreary-Greer House, where a Julia Morgan-designed library table will be on view.

The tour also provides a convenient opportunity to view a special exhibit on Julia Morgan, displayed on campus and organized by the Environmental Design Archives. The tour booklet will include a list of other Julia Morgan designs that remain in the South Campus neighborhood, from modest speculative homes to lavish residences, to a grand religious seminary, a notable brown-shingle church, one of the architect’s rare commercial buildings, and even an apartment house of her design. As a bonus for tourgoers, a gem of a building designed by Walter T. Steilberg, an early associate of Julia Morgan, will be open on the tour.

03 October 2012

Dinner & talk by Richard Schwartz: The 1868 Hayward Fault Earthquake

Saturday, 27 October 2012
5:30–7:30 pm
Spenger’s Fish Grotto
1919 Fourth Street, Berkeley
Price: $30
Reserve no later than Sunday, 21 October: (510) 845-6874
Did you ever wonder what it is like to be in largest earthquake unleashed by the Hayward Fault? Historian Richard Schwartz will offer first-hand accounts of people who lived through the Hayward Fault Earthquake of 21 October 1868. Their stories are riveting. Schwartz will show many photos and illustrations to accompany the story of happening in the Bay Area before, during, and after the earthquake. As the USGS predicts that these maximum eruptions occur on the Hayward Fault, on average, every 140 years, this talk is a must-see, must-hear event for anyone who wants to know what may be in store for us at any moment.
For additional information, See the Builders Booksource website.