1722 Clay Street

Google street view, November 2011

1722 Clay (Block 318) is now half of a narrow parking lot between a store and the California Club, but prior to the 1906 earthquake and fire that parking lot was two homes numbered as 1722 and 1724 Clay. This was the home of Carl Paul Lenhard Leichter and his wife Julia Schuetze Leichter and family from 1880 to 1889. Their youngest daughter Olga was born here shortly after moving in. Also with them in 1880 was their son Paul, age 9, born to Carl from a previous marriage, and two small children - Edgar age 2 and Ella age 1 (later the wife of Theodore Schucking, nephew and heir of Adolf Sutro). Carl later built a new, much larger, home in Pacific Heights at 2016 Vallejo St and moved his family there in 1889 or early 1890.

The next record of this address is in a newspaper article from July 1891, the drowning of a 30 year old upholsterer named Max Staddleman who lived at the house with his cousin Victor Strett, a butcher. But neither Max or Victor are listed at this address in the city directories, in fact Max is never listed and Victor is not listed in the city after the death of his cousin. He had most likely moved to Clay Street on shortly before the drowning and decided to move on.


Census Records

1722 Clay Street, San Francisco, California
Enumerated by Carl L. Cook on June 2, 1900

Name Rel Born Status Parents Job
Mary Cleary Head Dec 1854, Canada widow b Ireland
Nora daughter Feb 1876 in Canada single fb Ireland stenographer
Lizzie Stover boarder July 1838 in NY widow f Penn, m Eng
Mary Mahoney lodger Oct 1866 in Canada single f NY, m Ire seamstress
Hattie McLaughan lodger Oct 1874 in Nevada single b Canada seamstress
Florence Hughston Head Nov 1851 in NY widow b NY
Caroline daughter Jan 1881 in PA single b NY at school
Earnest son Oct 1883 in NY single b NY at school

City Directories

1880 - Leichter, Carl, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1881 - Leichter, Carl P L, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1882 - Leichter, Charles P L, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1883 - Leichter, Charles P L, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1884 - Leichter, Charles P L, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1885 - Leichter, Charles P L, salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1886 - Leichter, Carl P., salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1887 - Leichter, Carl P., salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1888 - Leichter, Carl P., salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay
1889 - Leichter, Carl P., salesman Tillmann & Bendel, r1722 Clay

Newspaper Articles

San Francisco Call, Vol 70, Number 43 - July 13, 1891

Max Staddleman Drowned Near Harbor View.

He Was Seized With Cramps and Disappeared Before His Horrified Friends Could Rescue Him.

To drown within sight of friends who are unable to attempt a rescue increases the horror of death in the waves. That is how Max Staddleman, a well-known young upholsterer, lost his life yesterday afternoon in the surf near Harbor View.

In company with a dozen friends he attended a picnic give by the Madrid Benevolent Association in Harbor View Park. It was a merry party, and the young men danced and sang until they declared they could stand the beat no longer. After some argument they agreed to adjourn to the bath-house on the beach and take a swim. Staddleman was the merriest of the party, and continued to sing as he stepped from his room, clad in the regulation bathing suit.

"I'm going to take a long swim," said Staddleman as he prepared to plunge into the waves. "Don't do it, Max," said a friend in dismay, "the undertow is strong, the water is cold and you may be carried out to sea."


Staddleman, who had always been known as a strong, steady swimmer, refused to obey the warning. It would have save his life had he done so. He started off at once and soon distanced his friends, who preferred to remain in close to the beach. On, on he swam, and his friends watched his movements with interest, mingled with alarm.

When out about 200 yards from shore he was seen to cease the use of his arms and sink beneath the waves. In a few moments he arose to the surface, but sank again and was seen no more. At first his panic-stricken friends could hardly realize what they had seen. It was several moments before they became aware his danger. Then they rushed wildly along the beach and wrung their hands in agony.


"Help, help him, he's drowning," some one cried. None of the party dared swim out that far and the work of rescue did not commence until one of the party suggested that a boat be sent out. It was several minutes before a boat was secured from fisherman and rowed to the spot where the daring swimmer was last seen. The men rowed around in the vicinity for some time and then gave up all hope of rescuing the unfortunate man. It was evident that he had been seized by cramps, which caused him to become perfectly helpless in every limb and to drown before help arrived.

All efforts to find the body were without avail, but the search was kept up all the afternoon. Policeman James Kelly No. 2 was summoned. He wrapped up the drowned man's clothes and took them to the Morgue. He also brought a written statement of the tragic occurrence from C. Herman, the proprietor of the bath-house. Herman declared that Staddleman was at least half a mile from shore when he disappeared, but others say the distance was not more than 200 yards out. It is feared that the body may be carried tout to sea by the strong current.

Staddleman was a very popular Swiss, being a member of the sharpshooters and the Gruetli Verein. He was singe, aged 30 years and rooms at the house of his cousin, Victor Strett, 1722 Clay street.