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Industry moves to berkeley after 1906 earthquake, fire

By Susan Cerny
Saturday March 10, 2001

Berkeley Observed 

Looking back, seeing ahead 


Although the 1906 earthquake toppled chimneys and cracked walls in Berkeley, the city was considered safer than San Francisco, and many refugees became permanent residents.  

Between 1900 and 1910 Berkeley’s population grew from 13,000 to 40,000 and every part of the city experienced growth.  

In west Berkeley 30 factories were relocated or established within three months after the earthquake including Macaulay Foundry.  

The foundry is located at 811 Carleton St. and is the oldest west Berkeley industry still operating under its original name in its original location.  

Macaulay Foundry was founded in San Francisco in 1896 and primarily made castings for the Byron Jackson Iron works which developed water pumps used across the state for municipal water and irrigation systems. 

In 1906 both businesses burned to the ground, and both relocated to Berkeley. Located side-by-side, both in San Francisco and Berkeley.  

From 1896 until 1937 Macaulay Foundry’s largest customer was Byron Jackson Iron Works.  

It also made castings for several other Berkeley companies including Hawes Sanitary Drinking Faucet, Scott-Hall Motor Car Company, Jacuzzi Brothers., Johnson Gear, Pan-American Manufacturing and Peet Brothers (later Colgate-Palmolive) once located across the street. 

This is among Berkeley's few remaining early 20th century manufacturing plants, and one of the largest and oldest jobbing foundries in the West.  

On June 3, 1996 the California Historical Society designated Macaulay Foundry, Inc. a Historic Business: “In recognition of the historic contribution to California's growth for 100 Years.”  

Susan Cerny, author of Berkeley Landmarks, writes this column in conjunction with the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association