FoundSF is an interactive website that invites history buffs and all San Franciscans to share their unique stories, images, and videos from the past and present. This growing online database provides access to the city’s lost history, with stories, photos, video oral histories and more being contributed by hundreds of participants.
FoundSF was created in 2009 by Chris Carlsson, who per his website references himself as “a writer, San Francisco historian, professor, bicyclist, tour guide, blogger, photographer, and book and magazine designer”.
The Wiki-based website is a living archive of the city. Organized by decade, neighborhood, population and theme, FoundSF is a collaborative effort in conjunction with The San Francisco Museum and Historical Society and Shaping San Francisco. Here you can find fascinating social, natural, and political histories that underlie the San Francisco that we experience today “whether it be the planting of the Presidio’s Forest in the 1880’s or the city’s Punk Rock scene in the 1980’s.”
There are four ways to explore articles posted in FoundSF’s website. Use the “search bar” to look for terms of interest, click on the “random page” link to jump to a surprise article, explore the “themed collections” featuring grouped articles of interest, or check out “categories” to search by topic. ‘Categories” will allow you to browse articles by Decade, Theme, Population/People, or Neighborhood/Geography.
Unlike Wikipedia, FoundSF does not have a mission to present a neutral point of view. Instead, the website focuses on presenting real artifacts of history, and boasts that some of their best articles are ‘highly biased and provocative’.
FoundSF’s long-term goal is to “facilitate the discovery, presentation, preservation of, and access to local history, incorporating the past into a rapidly changing future.”
For more information or to contribute personally to this continually evolving collection please visit www.foundsf.org