WILLIAM FAWCETTE PERKINS
The period of rehabilitation immediately following the disastrous fire of 1906 in San Francisco was one which tested
the mettle of the citizenship, and brought into prominence those men of real worth and courage, and those who possessed
real affection for their city. Numbered among the men of this outstanding class was William Fawcette Perkins, now
deceased, who was for many years one of the foremost realtors of the bay region, and a man respected and admired
by all who knew him. He was a native son of San Francisco, his birth having occurred February 20, 1864. His parents
were William and Elmira Clarinda (Fawcette) Perkins, the former born in 1832, and the latter in 1834.
In the famous old Lincoln grammar school in San Francisco, Mr. Perkins received his education, and throughout his
life cherished the memory of the years he studied in this historic institution. His first work was in the land
office with William H. Mills, and he soon became very interested in San Francisco real estate. He early learned
that the most profitable methods to earn success in this field were the honorable ones, and through his active
years he rigidly adhered to this policy. Then occurred the earthquake and fire which razed the city of San Francisco
in 1906. Mr. Perkins was one of those given a badge by Mayor Reuff, permitting him to enter the devastated area.
He perceived in the ashes and ruins of the city a vision of a greater San Francisco, and he immediately directed
his efforts, along with numerous other loyal sons, toward the rebuilding of the ruined properties. Mistakes of
the past were considered, and the plans for reconstruction and development were laid down on new plans, modern
and designed to meet any further contingencies. He knew the value of land from his wide experience in the land
office, and judged correctly of its future advance, also chose wisely in property values among the many buildings
which he erected. Among these structures were the Francisca Club and the Court theater building. He built and opened
the well known Bellevue for Mrs. Barrows, and thus reestablished the place for her. He never sought political office,
or the public limelight, but proceeded through his career with an even pace, doing his work thoroughly and well,
and so achieved much.
On October 31, 1893, Mr. Perkins was married to Miss Georgiana M. Masten, a daughter of Nathan Keyes and Amelia
Antonia (Von Faulkenberg) Masten. A separate biography of Nathan Keyes Masten appears below. His wife was a daughter
of Baron Von Faulkenberg, a native of Valparaiso, Peru. She came to the United States in 1850, and married Mr.
Masten in 1851. They became the parents of fifteen children, of whom twelve lived, and they resided in South Park,
Where most of the children were born.
Mr. and Mrs. Perkins were the parents of three daughters. Ruth, the first in order of birth, married Alfred J.
Oyster, and they have four children, Alfred, Jr., Robert Tubbs, Ruth Mary, and Susanne. Margaret, second in birth,
married C. C. Trowbridge, Jr., and they have three children, William Perkins, Thomas Tilden, and Margaret Trowbridge.
Helen, third and last, married C. W. Stever, by which union she is the mother of two children, Martha Anne and
Barbara. Mrs. Perkins survives her husband, and makes her residence at 3298 Washington street in San Francisco.
She is interested in civic matters, and is a member of the Francisca Club and the Women's Civic Society.
Mr. Perkins' religious affiliation was with the Methodist Church, in which denomination his father had been a minister.
He was a member of the Bohemian Club of San Francisco. His death occurred June 9, 1926, and in his passing the
community lost a respected and representative citizen, typical of the class of men who have brought the city to
its present state of opulence and prosperity in the short space of a quarter century.
The History of San Francisco, California
Lewis Francis Byington, Supervising Editor
Oscar Lewis, Associate Editor
The S. J. Clark Publishing Company
Chicago-San Francisco 1931
San Francisco, CA
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