Jennie Blair and Daisy MacCallum, 1940

Photograph of cousins Jennie Blair (left) and Daisy Kelley MacCallum riding in a pedicab, or bike taxi, on Treasure Island during the 1940 Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco. Jennie is 71, and Daisy is 81 years old. A blanket covers their laps, and they are wearing coats and hats. (Gift of John Maulbetsch, Rosemary Kelley Maulbetsch Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

The Golden Gate International Exposition, held at San Francisco’s Treasure Island, was a World’s Fair celebrating, among other things, the city’s two newly built bridges. The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge opened in 1936 and the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937. The exposition opened from February 18, 1939, through October 29, 1939, and from May 25, 1940, through September 29, 1940.

The idea to hold a World’s Fair to commemorate the completion of the Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge started from a letter to The San Francisco News in February 1933. Architects W.P. Day and George Kelham were assigned to consider the merits of potential sites around the city. By 1934, the choice of sites had been narrowed to the areas adjoining the two bridges: either “an island built up from shallow water” north of Yerba Buena Island which would go on to be named Treasure Island, or the Presidio, which had previously been used in 1915 for the Panama–Pacific International Exposition.

Yerba Buena Shoals was chosen as the site in February 1935. Treasure Island, a flat, geometrically shaped, artificial island attached to Yerba Buena Island, was built for the Exposition near where the Oakland span and the San Francisco span of the Bay Bridge join. The dredging of Treasure Island started on February 11, 1936. 19,000,000 cubic yards of fill were required for the 385-acre site. (Wikipedia)

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