• View of the Golden Gate Bridge, taken from the Marin Headlands, looking towards San Francisco at sunrise.

    Golden Gate

    National Recreation Area California

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  • Tunnel Closure

    The Barry/Baker tunnel on Bunker Road will be closed for maintenance during the weeks of 6/2 and 6/9. The tunnel will be open on the weekends. Please use Conzelman Road instead. More »

  • Muir Beach Overlook closure

    The Muir Beach Overlook will be closed for Accessibility improvements and trail upgrades from June 2 through July 21. Alternate viewpoints are available along Highway 1 between there and Stinson Beach.

Ceramics and Pottery

small piece of brightly colored pottery
NPS
 
small piece of decorative porcelain
NPS
 

These pieces of a polychrome (multi-colored) porcelain bowl was discovered at Sutro Baths. It is believed to be Japanese Import, possibly from the Imari Tradition, which was notable for its bright cobalt blue, red, and gold designs. During the late 1800s, Asian Import ceramics were extremely popular with Europeans and Americans. They reflected a growing Western world view that high-class citizens should be aware and educated about other cultures. San Francisco was an extremely trend-conscious young city at the time, and Asian Import ceramics are common at sites across the city from this time period.

 
fragment of pottery showing pastoral scene
NPS
 
colorful detail of pastoral scene on ceramic
NPS
 

This transferware ceramic vessel depicts an elaborate 18th century pastoral scene….a young gentleman clad in fashionable clothes plays the flute for a woman richly dressed with yellow and red dress, white wig, and fan. "Transferware" refers to a kind of ceramic decoration that developed in England in the 1700s that used inked designs to transfer images onto unglazed ceramics. Previously, workers hand-painted designs onto ceramic vessels, either before or after the pieces were fired. The process was time consuming and did not produce standardized results. Transferware revolutionized the ceramics industry because it made creating detailed, standard images possible for a lower cost. This ceramic sherd was discovered at a prehistoric midden at Lands End.

 
small pieces of brown and white ceramics
NPS
 

These pieces of brown-on-white transferprint ceramic form part of a saucer or cup. Although the piece is believed to be manufactured in England or the United States, it is decorated to reflect an Asian theme. The interior is decorated with a band of repeating decorative panels, floral tableaus with bamboo and cherry or plum blossom alternating with scenes of ships and rocky shores. The exterior is decorated with larger sprigs of blossoms and leaves, surrounding a scalloped panel of maritime scene with a junk style ship on ocean with rocky shore. Western-made copies of Asian style ceramics were popular in the late 1800s and early 1900s. These sherds were recovered from Merrie Way Stands, a popular food and goods concessionaire at the amusement park above Sutro Baths.

 

Please visit the park's Artifacts and Collection page.

Please visit the park's Archeology at Golden Gate page.

Did You Know?

Photo of gull chicks breaking our of an egg in a nest.

After incubation lasting four weeks, a gull chick breaks out of its egg without assistance from its parents. At hatching, the chick is fully covered with down and is soon able to open its eyes and stand up to walk about the nest.