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Male, born 12/1859

Professional History

Principal, F.H. Happersberger, Sculptor, San Francisco, CA, c. 1885-c. 1915. In 1889, his studio was located at 51 Park Avenue in San Francisco.


Born in "Township #4" (in or near Dutch Flat) in Placer County, CA, Frank Happersberger, Jr., lived in San Francisco, CA, by 1870, attending schools there. He attended art school in Europe, and returned to the US for good in 1885, settling again in San Francisco. According to voter's registration records of 1888, Frank shared a house at 532 Stevenson Street in San Francisco, with his brother Emil, who worked at that time as a druggist. Eight years later, he lived at 1315 Hyde Street. In 1910, he and his family had relocated to 410 30th Street in San Francisco. According to the US Census of 1920, Frank, Jr., Eva, Frank III and daughter-in-law, Maude, lived in a dwelling at 49 Madrone Road in San Rafael, CA. Ten years after that, Frank, Jr., now widowed, resided with his son, Harry, and his family at 58 Olema Road in Fairfax, CA.

His father was Frank Happersberger, Sr., (born c. 1830 in Bavaria), who came to the US in 1849. His wife, was Eliza Happersberger (born c. 1837 in Bavaria), with whom he had four children: Frank, Jr., Emil (born c. 1861 in CA), Edward (born c. 1863 in CA) and Otto (born c. 1866 in CA). In 1860, Frank, Sr., Eliza and Frank, Jr., lived in Placer County, where he worked as a cook. According to the US Census of 1870, the family, without Frank, Sr., lived in the same building as the William Tell Saloon in San Francisco; Eliza worked in the bakery operated by neighbors Charles and Gertrude Verner.

He married Eva Happersberger (born c. 1866 in MN) in c. 1890. Her father came from MA, her mother, OH.

Frank and Eva had two sons, Frank Happersberger III (09/23/1892-06/12/1947) and Harry (born c. 1896 in CA).

Frank Happersberger, Jr., (b. 1859 in CA) son of a Bavarian immigrant pioneer, was born in Place County, CA, in 1859. His father, Frank Happersberger, Sr., came west from New York to participate in the Gold Rush c. 1849. Frank, Jr., spent his youth in San Francisco, and first worked as a wood-carver for the San Francisco firm of Kemp and Hoffman. Eager to improve his skills and raise his social standing, Happersberger received an eight-year education (c. 1878-1885) at a German royal art academy. While still in Europe, he made a successful entry in a competition for a life-size statue of the assassinated President Garfield (d. 1881) to be placed in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. He traveled from Hamburg, Germany to New York, NY, between 01/22/1885-02/07/1885 aboard the Hamburg-Amerikanische Packetfahrt-Actien-Gesellschaft steamer "Lessing," making his way back to San Francisco. The Garfield statue was unveiled triumphantly on 07/04/1885, and from that point, Happersberger had established himself locally as a sculptor skilled with the media of marble and bronze. Later, the Lick Trust selected his design to be used for this multi-part, didactic sculpture commemorating CA's cultural progress. (See "The Bay of San Francisco," Vol. 1, [Chicago, IL: Lewis Publishing Company, 1892], page 551, accessible online atAccessed 12/20/2011.) According to the California Voters Registration record for 1896, at age 37, Happersberger stood 5 foot 4 inches tall, with blue eyes, light brown hair and a light complexion.

PCAD id: 6323