June 19, 1920
Page 19
San Francisco’s Projected War Memorial Will Provide Long-Needed Home for the Symphony

Wing of Proposed Building to Be Given Over to Symphony and Chamber Music—Home for Opera Assured Also—City Working as Unit to Make Building a Reality

SAN FRANCISCO, June 9.—Never since the building of the Exposition Auditorium have the people of San Francisco worked so unitedly as upon the present drive for funds for the great War Memorial which is to be erected at Civic Center and near the auditorium. It is to be a magnificent building, devoted to music, drama and art, and will cover an entire block, 275 by 417 feet in dimensions. The cost will be $2,500,000, of which $1,850,000 has already been subscribed, and the remainder assured. It has been the aim of the committee to make this of personal interest to every resident of our city, and subscriptions from five cents to $100,000 are being received.
It is to be an absolute expression of San Francisco with an opportunity for everyone to claim a share not only in the building but in its preservation during future generations. This “living tribute” will be the most complete memorial to our fallen heroes yet conceived, and equal, if not superior, to any building of its kind in the world.
The city and county of San Francisco, recognizing it as a civic factor of untold benefit to the people, have subscribed $100,000, the Police Department $50,000, while 30,000 school children have sent in voluntary subscriptions totaling $5,205.06. The Musicians’ Union, which is vitally interested, subscribed $2,000 from its fund, with a personal appeal to every member which will probably bring their donation to $10,000. Employees of stores and factories have called mass meetings and contributed largely to this great project which is the expression of an ideal, and aims to be far more comprehensive than anything which the other 2000 cities of America are contemplating. In fact, all seem to realize that it is a true expression of gratitude, and San Francisco will be represented 100 per cent. The fact which has been impressed by the committee is that “if 100,000 men and women each contribute fifty cents or one dollar it will do more to make the War Memorial truly expressive of San Francisco than would the single subscription of $5 00,000 by a rich man.”
The building will surround a memorial court flanked by colonnades with places for bronze tablets in memory of those who made the supreme sacrifice, and it will be truly in keeping with the spirit and purpose of a “memorial.” Visitors will be impressed by the sentiment expressed rather than by the wonderment induced when beholding the gigantic statues which have been erected in commemoration of great deeds.
Symphony to Realize Dream
For over four years the San Francisco Symphony has been planning its home and seven sets of plans have been made for a Symphony Hall, but each time something has occurred to postpone the work. Last May a combination was decided upon and the Symphony will have a home far more perfect than it had dreamed possible. One wing of the building will house the Symphony and Chamber Music Society. Another will be given to opera and drama, for which a school is also planned. Quarters for the School of Fine Arts of the University of California will include studio rooms, art gallery and museum.
One wing furnished completely and including a perfectly equipped gymnasium will be the State headquarters of the American Legion of California, with meeting hall, executive offices, etc., absolutely free. There will also be a kitchen with all the necessary equipment for furnishing banquets, etc.
A local architect is now in Europe gathering data to perfect details, and work on the building will go forward as rapidly as possible.
The Board of Regents of the University of California will have complete control. Although out of politics, the Memorial will adjoin Civic Center, and the city plans to extend the Pan Handle past it, thus giving a frontage of beautiful parking and connecting with Golden Gate Park and the ocean. —E. M. B.


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