Uncommon promotional bird’s-eye-view in the style of Saul Steinberg showing the port of San Francisco as the gateway to Pacific commerce.

Cartographer(s): Port of San Francisco, Waffoner
Date: 1984
Place: San Francisco
Dimensions: 47.5 x 63 cm (18.7 x 24.7 in)
Condition Rating: VG+

In stock

SKU: NL-00704 Categories: , Tag:


This clever promotional bird’s-eye-view uses a twisted and foreshortened Pacific Ocean to highlight San Francisco as the easy jumping off point to East Asia and beyond. Japan is just a few ship’s-lengths beyond the Golden Gate, with Korea, Taiwan, and the Philippines immediately after.

The dramatically skewed perspective is an excellent example of persuasive cartography, effectively highlighting the port of San Francisco’s connectivity to East Asia. The markets of the South China Sea, Indonesia, and even Australia and the Indian Ocean, are all shown to be within the port’s maritime sphere.

The depiction of the city of San Francisco itself is splendid, with major monuments and attractions, including: Coit Tower, the Trans America Building, a cable car on a steep hill, and Victorian houses. To further highlight the port, the artist has drawn the clock tower of the Ferry Building as among the tallest structures in the city (in reality, it is only 245 feet tall).

Condition Description

Slight wear at the edges.


Rumsey 9007.000.