|Explore North America United States California--Northern San Francisco|
This tall white tower fits into the San Francisco scene as much as the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz and the TransAmerica Building. It's seen from almost every part of San Francisco and photographs are taken of it from all around the City . And yet not too many people - citizens or tourists - have ever bothered to climb Telegraph Hill and take a closer look.
I remember my mother taking me up that hill to see Coit Tower , more than 60 years ago and I still recalled the wonderful murals inside, done by that famous social reform painter Diego Rivera.
I went back recently to go inside the tower take a closer look.
First of all, I learned that those murals are not done by Diego Rivera, but by a number of other liberal artists of the 1930's who tellingly revealed the San Francisco scene during the Great Depression. There were 25 artists, the best in the Bay Area, and each was very happy to make $38 a week. And all of us since then are happy to see the results of their labors. Their sociological views of the grim lives they and their fellow citizens led during those dark days before World War II show us much more than just some very interesting fresco paintings.
Here's San Francisco's Coit Tower, up close.
article published 12/11/2004