U.S. Old Mint Building
California| Posted: 12/22/2005
The National Trust Loan Funds closed on a $250,000 loan to the San Francisco Museum and Historical Society to defray the predevelopment costs associated with the $50 million rehabilitation of the historic U.S. Old Mint Building in San Francisco.
Thanks to abundant gold and Comstock silver, the San Francisco landmark fondly known as the "Granite Lady" was once the busiest mint in the United States. One of the last government buildings constructed in the Greek Revival style, the Old Mint, completed in 1874 is also the city`s oldest stone buildings. When mint operations were moved to a new facility in 1933, the building housed government offices and a popular museum. Following a major earthquake and subsequent fire in 1905, and a second earthquake in 1989, the Treasury Department closed the building in 1993. Hard work by local supporters and the California congressional delegations reopened the museum temporarily, but substantial commitment from federal, state and local leaders and Bay Area citizens was needed to save the structure.
The National Trust has a long history with preserving this venerable National Historic Landmark. In 1994, it named the Old Mint to its 11-Most Endangered Properties list. In 2001, National Trust staff was appointed to a Mayoral Task Force charged with soliciting and reviewing development proposals for the property. In January 2003, the task force voted unanimously to support a proposal submitted by the San Francisco Museum & Historical Society and in June 2003, SFM&HS was awarded the development rights. The Society’s plans feature 40,000 square foot museum, including exhibit halls, research and library space and administrative offices, with the balance of the building being used for a visitor center, Bureau of the Mint exhibits in the historic vaults, office space for community organizations, and related restaurant and retail spaces. The Museum is slated to open in April 2006.
For more information contact:
National Trust Loan Funds