Woman holding a cat on the roof

What it is:

Photo measuring 3.5 x 4.75 inches.

What I know about it:

Undated and unidentified, but for possible location see below.


I ran across this and figured the cat lovers out there could use a dose.  I love the fact that the woman and cat are clear, and yet the whole thing has a sort of soft, dreamy quality, like some misty-eyed photo of Paris between the wars, the kind that gets turned into nostalgic posters and postcards.  And yet, rather than Paris, isn’t that San Francisco’s City Hall looming in the distance?  I live just blocks away from it, and yet this is such a misty-eyed view that it makes me hesitate to say for sure, since I can’t make out precise details that would let me distinguish it from some other domed building in some other city.  But assuming this is San Francisco, then I would guess it was taken from a rooftop or balcony on the Van Ness Avenue side, around the Western Addition or lower Cathedral Hill areas, rather than the Polk Street side.  That view of City Hall from the Polk Street side would be where municipal buildings are, and the plant box and laundry shown here seem residential to me.  Anybody else have a thought on that?  Regardless, this lady would obviously like you to say hi and enjoy her kitty, so please do!  UPDATE:  Looking closer now, I realize I was too distracted by the setting to notice her arms!  One appears to have a white sleeve while the other doesn’t.  Is one sleeve pushed back?  Or is she wearing something like a bandage?

7 comments on “Woman holding a cat on the roof”

  1. Judging from the woman hairstyle and dress I suppose this picture has been taken in 1920ies, first half of twenties. It reminds me to some picture of my granny that she left me when she passed away.

  2. Bandage. The cat was a clawing scratching nasty little so and so. See? He is trying to do it again! 🙂

  3. I agree that it’s a bandage on her arm. Also, that the picture was taken in the 20’s. But, I have doubts that it’s San Francisco City Hall. The edifice on both sides and the dome of City Hall have columns. Granted, they could have gussied it up further as the years went on. Also, since I’m adding my two cents, where the gal is standing is the back of the residence, given the roughly made fence behind her.

    • Thanks for the reply. Yeah, I looked at pictures of City Hall and compared, and it seems to be the same building, but it’s just hard to tell for sure. So interesting to speculate how things have changed in the intervening years.

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