Hopkins Terrace No. 3
Origins of the Tract
Since 1884, the land that includes Bay View Place had been owned by the Alameda Water Company, whose president and major stockholder was Moses Hopkins (1817– 1892). Hopkins, who had come to California in 1851 to join his brother, future railroad baron Mark Hopkins, spent decades as a farmer in the Sacramento Valley. The death of Mark in 1878 left Moses a wealthy man, and he used his inheritance to invest in land holdings throughout California. Hopkins Street in North Berkeley is named after him.
Moses Hopkins’ personal Berkeley holdings included land on both side of Codornices Creek. In 1891, he filed a subdivision map for part of a tract that he named Hopkins Terrace. This subdivision extended south from the creek to Rose Street and east from Spruce Street to Scenic Avenue. Hopkins began selling lots the very same year, but the district remained sparsely populated until the first decade of the 20th century, when a Key System streetcar began running along Euclid Avenue, making it possible for hillside residents to commute to work in Oakland and San Francisco.
On 26 September 1904, a mere four months after Map No. 2 had been filed, Titus filed Hopkins Terrace Map No. 3. Between the filings of these two maps, the Berkeley Development Company had been busy selling lots in the subdivision. Map No. 3 (Fig. 3) indicated that all but two lots on Arch Street and many along Glen Avenue had already been sold. On Bay View Place, which was still disconnected from Euclid Avenue, parcels 31–33, 34–37, and 49—choice view lots along the western edge—were marked sold
Hopkins Terrace Map No. 2 was filed on 31 May 1904. The owner of the land at that time was the Berkeley Development Company, whose president was Louis Titus.1 Titus signed the following statement on the map: “I, Louis Titus, the owner of the land shown upon this map, hereby dedicate for use as public streets, all Avenues, Streets and Places shown hereon.”
Early Residents on Bay View Place
The first homebuilders in the Hopkins No. 3 tract were Sidney Armer (1871–1962) and Laura Adams Armer (1874–1963), artists from San Francisco who married in July 1902. Sidney was a painter and commercial illustrator, while Laura was a photographer and painter who would become an acclaimed writer in the early 1930s.2 Several months after their wedding, the Armers engaged the contractors Kidder & McCullough to build a two-story brown-shingle house of Sidney’s design at 1329 Arch Street.
The next two houses in the tract and the first ones to go up on Bay View Place were constructed in 1905 by the pioneer Berkeley designer-builder and noted amateur artist A.H. Broad (1851–1930).3 The clients were Rear Admiral Merrill Miller (1842–1914), retired commandant of the Mare Island Naval Shipyard, and Lieutenant (future Rear Admiral) Ammen C. Farenholt, M.D. (1871–1956), of the U.S. Navy Medical Corps. Erected at 1328 and 1324 Bay View Place, respectively, the Miller and Farenholt houses were designed in the Arts & Crafts style and clad in unpainted brown shingles.
This was not the end of A.H. Broad’s building activities for naval personnel in the neighborhood. Still in 1905, he built a third brown-shingle residence, this time for Rear Admiral William Henry Whiting (1842–1925), commandant of the U.S. Naval Training Station on Yerba Buena Island. Located at 1317 Arch Street, the Whiting residence features a large circular terrace facing west toward the bay vista.
In the mid-1910s, Farenholt moved into the Whiting house on Arch Street. Two years after Admiral Whiting’s death, Farenholt married the widowed Henrietta Whiting, who was the daughter of Chun Afong and Julia Fayerweather of Hawaii.