An Older Oakland

November 11, 2009

I just ran across a local blog about Oakland neighborhoods.  Here’s the excerpt that caught my attention:

“Reading through the old real estate ads is like peering through a window into an alternate universe. In 1917, key selling points of homes in Oakland included proximity to train lines and whether or not there was a chicken house in back. Scout troops ran bicycle safety classes at the schools on weekends. People swam in Lake Merritt. Not bad!”

Bicycles and chicken houses!

If you’d like to read this very well researched post about the history of Oakland neighborhoods, visit:

And here are some interesting pictures of an Older Oakland (Esp. Lake Merritt):

Nuns row on Lake Merritt.  195

A map of the Esturary and railroad crossing.  I am guessing it is circa 1850, before the lake was closed in.

The railroad, crossing Lake Merritt, from Brooklyn, over the estuary, through down town and to the Port of Oakland

Alameda County US Coastal Survey, 1859.  Notice, the northern estuary with the railroad crossing, instead of a closed off Lake Merritt like today.

Alameda Coastal Survey, 1859. Notice how there an estuary, instead of an inclosed Lake Merritt.

Notice the estuary before Lake Merritt was enclosed and expanded. CA Coasta Survey, 1859

One of my favorite depictions of the Oaks of Oakland. We now live in an apartment building where that horse and buggy is passing.


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