Spreckels Sugar Factory on Potrero Shore

Unfinished History

Claus Spreckels and his descendants ran one of the most successful sugar refining businesses in San Francisco from about the 1880s well into the 20th century.


Spreckels' Sugar Factory beneath Potrero Hill, c. 1890s

Photo: Bancroft Library

Western Sugar Refinery AAC-7616.jpg

Western Sugar Refinery, n.d., near Union Iron Works, San Francisco.

Photo: San Francisco History Center, SF Public Library

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Old Spreckels Sugar Factory at end of 23rd Street early 1970s.

Photo: Robert Durden Color Slide Collection, San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library


The 1905 Sanborn Insurance map shows the configuration of the Spreckels Sugar works and the other industrial facilities in the area.

Map: Courtesy of David Rumsey

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Remnants of the old power house that was part of the sugar refining complex, c. 2008.

Photo: Chris Carlsson

Sugar workers (women) behind Spreckels Sugar Factor, 23rd Street 1919 wnp27.2836.jpg

Sugar workers behind Spreckels Sugar Factory on 23rd Street, 1919.

Photo: OpenSFhistory.org wnp27.2836