The city, with its dependencies, forms a very remarkable center of studies. The University of California, founded in 1855 as the College of California, should be mentioned in the first place. Legally established in 1868, the university was opened the following year and in 1873 it was moved to the hills of Berkelev, where in 1903 the construction of grandiose buildings was begun, and, among them, of a stadium capable of 75,000 seats. The university is divided into two sections. The first is divided between Berkeley (v.), The main center, with the colleges of literature and science, commerce, agriculture, civil and mechanical engineering, mining and chemical engineering, and the high schools of architecture, librarianship, pedagogy, law and medicine (I and II year); and S. Francisco, where they are the medical school (3rd-5th year, with clinics and nursing school as well as the GW Hooper Foundation for medical research), the California School of Fine Arts, the Hastings College of Law, and the Colleges of dentistry and pharmacy, as well as museums of anthropology and ethnology, archeology and art. Due to the agricultural character of California, the school of agriculture has taken on particular development in the university, which carries out a vast activity through public courses, correspondence courses, consultancy services and site inspections; in addition to the teaching center in Berkeley, it has experimental fields and laboratories in Davis, Riverside, Chico, Santa Monica, and other locations. The second section of the University of California is located in Los Angeles (v.) And includes a College of Arts and Sciences, a College for Masters and a Medical Department; this section is the product of the development of a regular state school, already existing in Los Angeles and absorbed by the university. Which also has other dependencies, including the school (department) of astronomy and the Lick astronomical observatory – one of the best equipped in the world – on Mount Hamilton, the DO Mills observatory in Santiago del Chile, the Scripps Institution for oceanography in La Jolla, near S. Diego. The university possesses, among the various faculties, a library of more than one million volumes and an important collection of cinematographic films that are made available to any cultural event is also noteworthy. In 1927, there were more than 17,000 in-house students in Berkeley, more than 6,000 in Los Angeles. The whole is governed by a council of regents and a president. The board is made up of 24 members, of which 8 ex officio; the other 16 are appointed by the governor.
According to ehuacom, in San Francisco there is also the medical school, with the clinics, the nursing school and the medical library Lane, of the Leland Stanford junior University, founded in 1885 by L. Stanford (1824-1893), financier and politician (governor of California, 1861-63; United States senator, 1885-91) and his wife, in memory of their only son; it has been operating since 1891 and has its main center in Palo Alto. It has chemistry and engineering laboratories, schools of pedagogy, journalism, medicine, law, biology, social sciences, commerce, literature, physical sciences; it has an art and archeology museum, an agricultural experimental station. In 1927 he had 3,412 students of both sexes; in the same year his library possessed more than 420,000 volumes. Herbert Hoover donated a collection of 54 to the library.
Also in S. Prancisco are the College of physicians and surgeons, the St. Ignatius College (Catholic) and the San Francisco State Teachers College.
It is also worth mentioning St Mary’s University, a Catholic university established in 1863, which is based in Moraga, at the foot of Mount Diabolo. Oakland is home to Mills College, a girls’ school opened in 1871.
In addition to the aforementioned libraries annexed to the universities, the Public Library (founded in 1878), with approximately 470 thousand volumes, should be mentioned; the Mechanics’-Mercantile Library, with approximately 120,000 volumes; the San Francisco Law Library (1865), with 75,000 volumes, etc.
Numerous scientific societies are also based in San Francisco: the California Academy of Sciences, founded in 1853; the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (1889); the California Historical Society (1886), etc.
History. – A Franciscan mission, dedicated to the saint of Assisi, was founded by Spanish religious near the northern tip of the peninsula in 1776, the year of American independence; for the first fifty years it assumed no importance, and at the time gold was discovered (1848: v. California) the population certainly did not exceed a thousand inhabitants. The first effect of the news of the discovery of gold was an almost total exodus even of these few inhabitants. But within the year the population multiplied with prodigious speed (proportion of 1 to 20), with immigrants from the east. The confusion was indescribable; suffice it to mention that in two years seven fires destroyed the new “center”, and that valuable goods arrived in such quantities that they were left to rot in the mud of the street where they sank and then served as foundations for the sidewalks being built. Customs revenue of $ 120,000 in 1848 in 4 years exceeded $ 4 million. Following irregular elections, in 1848 there were simultaneously 4 municipal governments, 3 civilians and one military; all claimed to be legitimate and all were utterly incapable of guaranteeing public peace. Therefore in 1849 they were replaced by a legislative assembly organized by the citizens, which, however, did not have the recognition of the military authorities. With the state convention of June, the assembly ceased. The city had several municipal statutes in 1850, 1851, 1856 and 1898.
During these early years San Francisco became a mecca for all adventurers. To combat these conditions, a “Supervisory Committee” was formed in June 1851 by the most sober citizens (dissolved in September, and formed again, on a broader basis, in 1856 for six months) to try and punish the offenders and to expel suspicious types.
After the prosperity of the beginning there were several serious financial crises in 1855, 1858 and 1870. San Francisco has always been the center of all the political life of the state (see California). Municipal policy was very corrupt until 1898, when serious reforms were initiated.