When the Victorians moved

The house formerly at 773 Turk being eased into its new location at 1737 Webster.

The house formerly at 773 Turk being eased into its new location at 1737 Webster.

“THESE DAYS you don’t have to move away from your neighborhood; it moves away from you.” So said a longtime local resident to the Chronicle in the early 1970s, when some of the splendid survivors in the path of the Redevelopment Agency’s wrecking ball were loaded up by house movers and rolled to new locations.

Many came from the block now occupied by Opera Plaza, including the home originally located at 773 Turk Street, which was moved to 1737 Webster Street. Even though several inches had been cut from its side bay window before the move, the house didn’t fit into its new lot. So workers shaved off several more inches and shoe-horned the house into place using a two-by-four to squeeze it past the house next door. Utility crews stood by to raise power lines, cut bus wires and turn aside streetlights reaching out into the path.

One person on the scene remembered watching the move in the middle of the night while sipping brandy to keep warm. “It was a kick, watching houses rolling down the streets,” he said.

A classic Victorian being moved from Turk Street to 1737 Webster, where it stands today.

A classic Victorian being moved from Turk Street to 1737 Webster, where it stands today.

MORE PHOTOGRAPHS of the moving Victorians from SF Heritage

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