Welcome to Historic America’s walking tour of the Haight-Ashbury, one of San Francisco's most storied and colorful neighborhoods! I’m Aaron, your guide and professional history nerd. Before we begin, check out www.historicamerica.org to view our multitude of tour offerings and extra elements, like our podcast and Youtube series. I also invite you to use #historicamericatours on social media to show off your neighborhood adventure today. Let’s begin.
During the late 1960s, the Haight-Ashbury was home to the countercultural movement that sought to create a brave new world of free expression, free love, and new possibilities. Along these storied streets, the movement’s followers - hippies - mounted a peaceful revolution against war, conformity, materialism, and oppression. There are at least two sides to every revolution, however, and although the hippie counterculture had its insights, it also had excesses. We’ll explore both today.
The hippies were joined by many of the most talented musicians and the most notorious personalities of their era. On this tour, we will explore their stories (along with a few others), ultimately discovering how the “flower children” left an indelible mark on the history of the Haight-Ashbury, San Francisco, and the United States. Alright, let’s chill out, hang loose, and head back to 1967 and the Summer of Love. To get started, find your way to the intersection of Fulton & Stanyan streets.