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limited number of counties in the vicinity of Stockton. In order, however, to accomplish this, some considerable alterations must bé made in the interior of the building, in order to convert the rooms into wards for patients. For this purpose your committee would recommend a reasonable appropriation.

In view of all the facts in the premises, your committee would recommend an appropriation of forty-five thousand dollars for the Napa State Asylum for the Insane, to be used for the following purposes : Payment of interest due on contracts; payment of difference between gold and silver, lost by contractors ; payment of balance due Wright and Sanders; the remainder, if any, to be applied to contingent expenses about the buildings and grounds.




Board of State Harbor Commissioners





Your committee, in its investigations, has had its attention called to several points which seem deserving of comment. We find that the practice of anticipating appropriations, i. e., doing work and purchasing materials before the money is in the treasury, entails considerable loss to the State. It has been our province to inquire into matters connected with the construction and repair of public buildings and the improvement of grounds belonging to the State; but in this department alone we find that the loss by reason of discount on warrants and interest paid amounts to about seventy-five thousand dollars biennially. As a remedy for this evil, we would recommend that no contracts be let until the tax has been collected and the money is in the treasury. This might delay improvements somewhat, but it would save considerable money to the State, and avoid complications with contractors.

We also find that the accommodations of the occupants of every State institution are on a style that, while it reflects great credit on the liberality of the commonwealth, is hardly just to the people who pay the taxes. Many of the inmates of our asylums have food, clothing, and keeping which, in comparison to their condition before coming there, is absolute luxury. We recognize the fact that these people should be treated decently and humanely, but we consider it an unwarranted extravagance to build for them homes of such magnificence. We think that there is a good field for economy in this direction. In this connection, we desire to call the attention of the Assembly to the fact that many patients in our asylums, and pupils in the Institution for the Deaf and Dumb, and the Blind, are in such circumstances as to be able to pay for their keeping and instruction. We would, therefore, recommend that those who are able to do so should be compelled to pay a reasonable amount for the care extended them by the State.

We find that the Directors of none of the institutions have observed the statute which requires a clause providing for eight hours' labor to be inserted in every contract for work to which the State is a party. This omission, your committee is convinced, has been entirely through ignorance of the law, and not from any desire to evade it. Without any expression of opinion as to the policy of such a statute, your committee would suggest that it is the duty of Boards of Trustees to follow the law as they find it. All of which is respectfully submitted.

DIXON, Chairman.





December 18th, 1877. To Hon. WILLIAM IRWIN,

Governor of the State of California.

The Act of the Legislature, approved twenty-eighth February, eighteen hundred and seventy-six, amendatory of section two thousand five hundred and thirty-two of the Political Code, directed the Board of State Harbor Commissioners within six months to have surveys made for the purpose of establishing a new water-front line of the City and County of San Francisco, and to this end to appoint consulting engineers to act with the Engineer of the Board.

In March, of eighteen hundred and seventy-six, the Board took action in the matter. Finding that at the request of their predecessors a Commission, consisting of Rear-Admiral John Rogers, United States Navy, Colonel George H. Mendell, United States Engineer Corps, and

Professor George Davidson, United States Coast Survey, had been detailed by their respective Departments to consider and report on the subject, and that some progress had already been made by them, the Board deemed it advisable to request the continuance of their services. To this they acceded, and after many interruptions, caused by their official duties, they submitted a report in March, eighteen hundred and seventy-seven. The Board take occasion to acknowledge their obligations to those gentlemen for their valuable services, and suggest that they be authorized to make a proper compensation to them. At the request of the Board, Mr. T. J. Arnold, their Engineer, also submitted a report.

The Act referred to directed that on these surveys being made the Governor, the Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco, and the Harbor Commissioners should assemble to consider the subject and fix the line.

Repeated conferences were had, and some personal examinations made, which resulted in the establishment of the new line on twelfth September, eighteen hundred and seventy-seven. As directed by section two thousand five hundred and thirty-eight of the Political Code, two maps of survey showing the change of the water-front line were duly authenticated, and one was filed in the office of the Recorder of the City and County of San Francisco, and the other in the office of the Harbor Commissioners. In order more exactly to identify the line, a description by reference to well known points on the city map was adopted and accompanies each of said maps. Both the line and the description were adopted unanimously.

The red line thereon indicates the new line established; the continuous black line shows the old line of eighteen hundred and fiftyone, and the line established by the Tide Land Commissioners from Second Street to the southern boundary of the city and county.


the easterly line of Wyoming Street; thence along the westerly line of Water-front Street, and said westerly line prolonged to its intersection with a curve of thirteen hundred and twenty-six and sixtenths (1,326 feet radius described from the intersection of the southerly line of A Street with the easterly line of Sixth Avenue as a center; thence southerly along said curve to a point in the prolongation northerly of the westerly line of Water-front Street (as the same is laid out south of Eleventh Avenue); and thence along the westerly line of said Water-front Street to the boundary line between the City and County of San Francisco and the County of San Mateo.


A very careful consideration was given to the reports submitted by the United States Commission and by Mr. Arnold. There was a general agreement of opinion as to the principles which should govern the location of the line, but there was some difference as to their application at certain points of the water front.


Commencing at the point where the easterly boundary line of the Presidio Reservation extended in a northerly direction intersects the three fathom contour line, shown upon the charts of the United States Coast Survey, and 'running thence in an easterly direction along said three-fathom contour line to the westerly line of Larkin Street extended northerly; thence along said westerly line of Larkin Street to a point four hundred and forty-nine and sixty-five one hundredths (4496) feet northerly from the southern line of Tonquin Street; thence along a line parallel to and distant two hundred (200) feet outwardly or seaward from a line described as follows: Commencing at a point two hundred and forty-five and fifty-three one hundredths (2451) feet northerly from the southerly line of Tonquin Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the westerly line of Powell street with the southerly line of Jefferson Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the westerly line of Dupont Street with the southerly line of Beach Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the southerly line of North Point Street with the westerly line of Kearny Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the northerly line of Francisco Street with the easterly line of Montgomery Street (said streets being estimated at one hundred and fifty (150) feet in width); thence in a straight line to the intersection of the southerly line of Lombard Street with the westerly line of Battery Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the southerly line of Filbert Street with the westerly line of Front Street; thence in a straight line to a point in the southerly line of Pacific Street, distant seventy-five and six-twelfths (75) feet easterly from the easterly line of Drumm Street; thence in a direct course toward the intersection of the northerly line of Mission Street with the westerly line of East Street to a point two hundred and eighty-three (283) feet, measured on said course northerly from the northerly line of Mission Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the southerly line of Folsom Street (as the same is laid out west of Stuart Street) with the westerly line of East Street; thence in a straight line passing through the point formed by the intersection of the northerly line of Harrison Street with the westerly line of Stuart Street to a point one hundred and thirtyseven and one-half (1373) feet southerly from the southerly line of Harrison Street (said distance of one hundred and thirty-seven and one-half (1372) feet to be measured at right angles to Harrison Street); thence in a straight line to the intersection of the westerly line of Spear Street with the northerly line of Bryant Street; thence in a straight line to the intersection of the westerly line of First Street with the northerly line of Townsend Street; thence southerly in a straight line three thousand three hundred (3,300) feet to a point six hundred and forty (640) feet easterly from the westerly line of Kentucky Street (said distance of six hundred and forty (640) feet to be measured at right angles to Kentucky Street); thence in a straight line to the intersection of the westerly line of Water-front Street with

1. An adherence as nearly as practicable to the directions of section twenty-five hundred and twenty-four (2524), Political Code, that the line should commence at a point where the eastern boundary line of the Presidio Reservation, extended in a northerly direction, intersects the three-fathom contour line shown on the United States charts, and run thence in an easterly and southerly direction upon straight or curved lines in such manner as to approach as near as practicable the extreme outer projections of the water-line front, as described in the "Act to provide for the disposition of certain property of the State of California," passed March twenty-sixth, eighteen hundred and fifty-one, to a point at or near the intersection of Second and Berry Streets, and thence continue southerly upon straight or curved lines in such manner as to approach as near as practicable the extreme outer projections of the water-line front, as established by the Board of State Tide Land Commissioners, to the southern boundary of the City and County of San Francisco.

2. Parallelism with the tidal currents.

3. Economy in the construction of the sea-wall, by avoiding water too deep, yet locating the line sufficiently far out to permit the opening of a thoroughfare two hundred (200) feet in width along the whole city front.

4. Avoiding as far as possible the cutting of any blocks of land and their consequent condemnation.

5. The creation of as few new spaces as possible in front of the blocks of land situate on the present water front.

It will readily be seen there was room for difference of opinion in the application of these somewhat conflicting conditions.

As one or the other of them seemed most controling, so the line would assume a different direction. But taking it as a whole it is believed that it satisfies those conditions as near as any one can possibly be drawn.


parts of it.

The new line intersects but two blocks, viz.: On Water-front Street, between Marin and Yuba Streets, and lies entirely in the water at no point exceeding twenty (20) feet in depth.

Its course and direction are parallel with and distant two hundred (200) feet from an interior line, which is described by reference to well known points on the official map of the city.

That part of it which lies between the west line of Larkin Street and the east line of the Presidio Reservation follows the threefathom contour line of the United States Coast Survey. It would have been better to run the line along and parallel with Lewis Street, but as the State had granted to the city, by the Beach and Water Lot Act of eighteen hundred and fifty-one (1851), a ninetynine (99) year term in all the lands lying between Lewis Street and Ship Channel-which is coterminous with the three-fathom contour line-and the interest of both the city and the State had afterwards been sold in said lands, it was feared that by placing them outside of the water-line front, the State might be subject to a claim of having taken such private lands for public use, it having been held that the impairing the value of land is a “taking” within the meaning of the Constitution. And there seemed no sufficient reason for incurring this risk, as the sea-wall embankment may never be needed at that point for shipping purposes owing to the heavy swell which prevails there.

The change from the present zigzag line to the straight or curved line water front has formed many spaces inside of the proposed two hundred (200) feet thoroughfare which are covered now by water.

They are shown on the accompanying map of the new line by a red shade.

The new line departs from the line established across China Basin by the Board of Tide Land Commissioners. Mission Rock lies directly in front of the basin, at a distance of eight hundred and ten (810) feet from the line of the Tide Land Commissioners, and the tidal current sets strongly through that space and sweeps past Rincon Point. On this current much reliance is placed for scouring the whole water front as far north as Clark's Point.

It was feared that if the Tide Land Commissioners' line was adopted as the water-front line, and the sea-wall or even any piled street should be extended along any such line, the effect might, and probably would be, to so contract the water-way that the tidal current would be diverted to the outside of Mission Rock, The new line was therefore deflected inwards, forming an obtuse angle opposite to the rock, and distant from it about one thousand (1,000) feet. All the engineers agree that this angle and distance will obviate the danger, and at the same time afford ample room for handling vessels between the water-front line and the rock.

point of the water front, affording quick transit and easy access to all

As compared with the present zigzag line it shortens the distance from Larkin Street on the north, to Alameda Street, just south of China Basin, by four thousand two hundred and sixty (4,260) feet, or three-quarters (l) of a mile, without decreasing the available dockage room.

Distance is so material an element in the cost of handling and transhipment of merchandise that the advantage of such shortened line of transit can scarcely be overestimated. Such a commercial highway is even now required, and will be indispensable in future years. The plan of harbor improvement now begun should be projected on a scale sufficiently extensive to meet all the future demands of our growing commerce. For this purpose a street of two hundred (200) feet is none too wide. The present Act of the Legislature authorizes the widening of the Water-front Street to but one hundred and fifty (150) feet. Further legislation, therefore, will be needed for the laying out of this thoroughfare, fixing its width, and extending the present streets so as to intersect it.

In order to preserve proper alignment of the blocks and sidewalks, such streets as have been extended to one hundred and fifty (150) feet in width should be narrowed down to their original width, e.g. Front Street, north of Vallejo, and Davis Street, north of Pacific. Exclusive jurisdiction over this thoroughfare should be vested in the Harbor Commissioners for the purposes of construction, repair, removal of obstructions, collection of harbor revenue, and laying railroad tracks.

Divided or concurrent jurisdiction with the municipal authorities over any part of the water-front streets experience has shown to be both vexatious and a hindrance to business.

When lines of railroad are needed they should be constructed by the State, be free to all engaged in the transfer of freight, and be subject to such regulations and rates of toll as the Harbor Commissioners may fix from time to time.


There was no diversity of opinion as to the propriety of retaining China, Central, India, South, and Dry Dock Basins as part of the navigable waters of the Bay. And, although the water-front line is drawn across their openings, yet it is provided in the description of the new line that free entrance into them shall be secured through any structures across such openings.

Attention is invited to the remarks made in our biennial report, page twenty-seven, with regard to China and Central Basins. The former is greatly needed at this moment for certain important branches of business requiring space and facilities which cannot be given at any other point, such as lumber, wood, hay, bricks, and paying stone. If these basins are to be kept open for navigation, we repeat, they should be placed under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Harbor Commissioners. But how is this to be done? They were granted to the City of San Francisco by the Act of thirtieth March, eighteen hundred and seventy-two (Statutes 1871-2, p. 722), for railroad and commercial purposes. This Act was amended by Act of eleventh March, eighteen hundred and seventy-four (Statutes 1873-4,


An important feature in the readjustment of the water front is the proposed thoroughfare. It is laid out two hundred (200) feet in width, and its inner line is parallel, except at one point, with the new water-front line. It extends in straight lines from point to

p. 359), by striking out the purposes of the grant, and prohibiting their sale altogether and their lease for more than five years.

Whatever policy induced these Acts, it is apparent the grant is now of little avail to the city, but stands in the way of the improvement of her water front.

These basins are becoming great mud flats, and the alternative is either to divide them into blocks and lots, or to dredge them so as to be made accessible to vessels.

Few are aware of the extent of China Basin and its importance to the shipping interests of the city. As laid out and dedicated to public use by the Tide Land Commissioners, it has an area of forty-nine and a half acres, and fronts on the Bay about thirty-four hundred feet, or nearly two thirds of a mile. The new water-front line restricts this area, and is about thirty-two hundred feet in length. The construction of the sea-wall at some future day, or even of the thoroughfare along this line, with proper openings and draw-bridges, will furnish protection to the vessels engaged in the lumber, wood, hay, and brick business against the southeast storms, and in effect will convert it into a large and sheltered dock. If the city should (as is now proposed) divide it into blocks and lots, and lease them, its whole area will soon be piled and planked, and be as effectually closed to navigation as if solidly filled up. As the five-year leases begin to expire, and even before, efforts would be made to induce the Legislature to extend them for a greatly increased time. If successful, the result will no doubt finally be that the whole property will be acquired by the lessees. If unsuccessful, the city will most probably have to encounter, in dispossessing the lessees, the same vexatious and protracted litigation that the State was put to in recovering possession of the wharves from the lessees some years since. During all that time, of course, no repairs would be done to the structures, and when the premises are recovered, the city will have in hand a property of little use without a great outlay, and be willing then to restore it to the State. Rather than encounter such state of things, it would be far better for the State to permit the city at once to divide the basin into lots and sell them for the relief of some of her pressing wants, or to permit the Harbor Commissioners to sell them for the benefit of the Harbor Improvement Fund. Far better, however, in our judgment, will it be for the State to take it, as she has the rest of the water front, under her own control, and improve it as a navigable dock for the common benefit of the city and State.

Entertaining these views, we recommend the repeal of the grant and restoration of China and Central Basins to State control, providing that they shall be kept open to navigation and be subject to the jurisdiction of the Harbor Commissioners.

It is out of place to discuss the power of the Legislature to repeal the grant, but we are advised that it can be sustained by ample authority.

line," and declared it should be the permanent water front of the city.

The land lying between that red line and the natural high water mark was granted to the city for ninety-nine (99) years, with authority to divide the same into blocks and lots and to sell the same, paying twenty-five (25) per cent of the proceeds of sale into the State treasury. Such subdivision into blocks and lots was made, and the city's interest therein was sold. By the Act of eighteenth May, eighteen hundred and fifty-three (Statutes 1853, p. 219), the State directed the residuary estate, that is, the fee, in such lots to be sold. This was done, and all the lots now fronting on that red linedeclared to be a permanent water front—are held in private ownership, mediately or immediately under the State.

On these facts the question arises: Can the State now authorize the change of the water front so as to deprive such lots of their relative position to it—that is, by placing the line further out and creating in front of such lots spaces between them and the new line?

We believe that power cannot seriously be doubted.

That being conceded, the next question is, can this be done without compensation to parties thus losing their relative position to the water front? If not, how and when must such compensation be made?

These questions must necessarily arise, and such action should be taken by the Legislature as will settle them in conformity with sound legal principles, and with due regard for the rights of those to be affected by the change.

No such issues can arise as to that class of lots which are cut by the proposed thoroughfare. The part taken must undoubtedly be condemned and compensation therefor be made in the usual way.

Nor can any difficulty arise as to another class of lots which do not reach the inner line of the thoroughfare-e. g., those in the six blocks between Pacific and Sacramento Streets. The owners will no doubt be willing to purchase the contiguous pieces of land, as their lots would be enlarged and improved in form, and a uniform alignment of the sidewalks and buildings be secured.

These three classes embrace all the blocks and lots directly affected by the change of line.

Legislative action will of course be required for the adjustment of all these details. They are not within the powers vested in the Harbor Commissioners by the present laws. Whatever mode be adopted, the moneys arising therefrom should be deposited with the State Treasurer, to the credit of the Harbor Improvement Fund.



The change of the water-front line gives rise to certain legal questions, to which we invite attention.

The Beach and Water Lot Act, of twenty-sixth of March, eighteen hundred and fifty-one, described a certain line known as the “red

First, as to its necessity. This can scarcely be deemed an open question. Soon after the passage of the Act of eighteen hundred and fifty-one (1851), when improvements began on the water front, it was seen that a retaining wall around the city front and the filling in of the lots and streets adjacent would be necessary to obviate the constant cost of repairs, and allow the erection of a better class of buildings. The teredo destroyed the piles, and hoof and wheel made short work of the street planking. The subject began to be discussed and made its appearance in the


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