What is Treasure Island? Why is it there? And where is it going?

In the second episode of this 2-part podcast series, San Francisco’s plan for a mid-bay international airport is abruptly derailed by World War II. The US Navy seizes the island, transforming the former World’s Fair location into “Naval Station Treasure Island”. The new base plays a vital role in the war, funneling millions of sailors into the Pacific Theatre. The world’s largest mess hall, San Francisco’s peculiar celebration of the war’s end, and an alarming series of Cold War-era mushroom clouds round out the military phase of Treasure Island’s history.

But that’s just the beginning, because after half a century San Francisco finally has its island back! Plans for the future of “San Francisco’s Newest Neighborhood” have been fraught with conflict and political turmoil, but believe me; they’re nothing short of spectacular.

Listen to Part One of the story.

For further edification:
» California State Military Museum
» “The Navy’s Last Detail” – SFGate.com, 1997
» Home movie – V-J Day celebrations and riot – Prelinger Archives
» “The Naval History of Treasure Island” – Prelinger Library, 1946
» Treasure Island Development Authority (TIDA)
» “Treasure Island’s need for speed” – SF Chronicle, 2005
» Treasure Island Master Plan – Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
» “A Vision for Urban Living” – SF Chronicle, 2006
» Treasure Island Museum
» “Consequences of a Rising Bay” – SF Chronicle, 2007

musical support:
Thanks to Devin Anderson for musical support from the “Uniforms” motion picture score — “Stamp Collection” and “Untitled”, courtesy of the PodShow PodSafe Music Network.

printed bibliography:


San Francisco’s Treasure Island

Jason Pipes – Arcadia Publishing, 2007


The San Francisco Bay Area: A Metropolis in Perspective

Mel Scott – UC Press, 1989


Treasure Island : San Francisco’s Exposition Years

Richard Reinhardt – Scrimshaw Press, 1973


The Art of Treasure Island

Eugen Neuhaus – UC Press, 1939


The Naval History of Treasure Island

ed. E.A. McDevitt – Naval Training & Distribution Center, 1946

linking policy: books in print available through your local independent bookstore; out of print books through abebooks.com