Page:Mexico, California and Arizona - 1900.djvu/324

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OLD MEXICO AND HER LOST PROVINCES.

water-front with a continuous, massive sea-wall, and a portion of this is already built. Extensive yards of attractive redwood lumber, which resembles cedar, and warehouses for grain, are seen. The elevator system, owing to lack of ships for properly carrying grain in bulk, is nowhere in use throughout California.

We reach next an area given up to heavy traffic in the fruits and produce of the country. Battery and Sansome streets succeeding are lined with large wholesale dry-goods houses similar to those in the greater Eastern cities. Montgomery Street shows stately office buildings, exchanges, and hotels. Kearney Street has been hitherto the chief site of the more elegant retail trade. Its prestige is passing, however, to Market Street, a wide thoroughfare which recalls State Street, Chicago. Having unlimited room for extension in the north and south direction of the peninsula, whereas the others named are contracted, Market Street is to be San Francisco's Broadway of the future.

The financial centre is contained in the area of two blocks, between California and Bush, Sansome and Montgomery Streets. Here are those institutions whose great transactions and singular history are unknown now to but few parts of the world.

The Nevada Bank, financial lever of the Bonanza kings, and point from which has been supposed to emanate all the weightiest influences connected with mining matters, is a four-story and Mansard iron building, with the usual classic "orders." The Bank of California, whence the brilliant Ralston rushed forth from his troubles to drown himself in the bay, is two stories, of "blue stone," of a pleasant color, and exceedingly sharp, agreeable cutting. The Merchants' Exchange, erected so long ago as 1867, is a very ornate, town-hall-looking