AKA: Religious of the Sacred Heart, Convent, Nob Hill, San Francisco, CA; Schools of the Sacred Heart, Broadway Campus, Nob Hill, San Francisco, CA

Structure Type: built works - dwellings - houses; built works - dwellings - housing; built works - public buildings - schools; built works - religious structures; built works - religious structures - convents

Designers: Bliss and Faville, Architects (firm); Walter Danforth Bliss (architect); William Baker Faville (architect)

Dates: constructed 1912-1915

3 stories

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2222 Broadway
Pacific Heights, San Francisco, CA 94115

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The Flood Mansion also had a street frontage at 2129 Vallejo Street.


This grand yet restrained residence was built in the wake of the catastrophic San Francisco Earthquake of 1906. According to the History of the Flood Mansion: "In the aftermath of the Great Quake of 1906, Maud Flood’s monumental home on Nob Hill was destroyed by fire. She fled San Francisco with her two children and told her husband that she was fearful of living in a city where such devastation could strike so suddenly. James Leary Flood reassured his wife, saying, 'I will build you a house of marble on a hill of granite.' And that is precisely what he did." (See "The History of the Flood Mansion," accessed 10/14/2015.) To add strength, architects Bliss and Faville specified that a welded steel frame undergird the house, much like the metal armatures of skyscrapers.

When it was completed in 1915, he house had expansive views, to the north, taking in the speactacular nighttime lighting displays of the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition (PPIE) grounds.

Building History

The son of the Comstock Silver baron James Clair Flood (1826-1889), James Leary Flood, Sr., (1857-1926) married twice, the first time to Kansas City native Marie Rose Fritz Flood (d. 01/15/1898 in San Francisco), and the second to Marie's sister, Maude Lee Fritz Flood (1876-1966). James L. and Marie had no children of their own, but lived at 1890 Page Street from about 1883 until 1896, when they moved to another residence at 1816 Pacific Avenue. Around 1894, James and Marie adopted a girl, Constance May Flood, whose paternity remained a question. (In the 1930s, Constance would become the center of a celebrated court case when she sought an inheritance from the Estate of James L. Flood, Sr.) After Marie died in 1898, James left San Francisco for a six-month trip to Asia, accompanied by his his sister-in-law, Maud Lee Fritz, brother-in-law, Walter Fritz, Constance, and a valet and maid. Shortly after his vacation on 02/1899, he married Maud Lee Fritz in Kansas City, MO, and returned to San Francisco to set up his new household with Maud.

The San Francisco Earthquake and Fire of 04/18-19/1906 destroyed the residence at 1816 Pacific Avenue and the couple purchased a new lot at 2222 Broadway on which they erected a sturdy, fireproof mansion. This second, Italian Renaissance palazzo, designed by the elite architectural firm, Bliss and Faville, had a quake-resistant steel frame covered in marble; it took three years to complete.

James and Maude and went on to have three children, one of whom, James L. Flood, Jr., died at four years of age in 1907. Although James L. Flood, Sr., died in 1926, his family resided in this house until 1938. At this time, Maud Flood deeded the residence to the Religious of the Sacred Heart Order within the Catholic Church. It later became a facility for the School of the Sacred Heart. Maud Flood lived for another 28 years in a penthouse suite at the Fairmont Hotel.

Building Notes

The Bliss and Faville designed the Flood Mansion in the Mediterranean Revival Style; a clean, rectangular form covered by a compound hipped roof, the residence contrasted notably with San Francisco's opulent, upper-class houses of the late nineteenth century. In 1915, this increased stylistic simplicity had become the hallmark of good taste.

The house had three stories, a belt course separating the fenestrations of the second and third floors. Arched windows of the first floor main facade were contained within square frames topped by cornices; the rondels in placed each corner heightened the resemblance to miniaturized triumphal arches. Double-hung windows of the second floor had a reduced scale, suggesting a desire for added privacy. Each window was trimmed by an ornamental, wrought-iron balcony. The architects located tall chimneys on the mansion's side walls, facing east and west.

Drawings for the James and Maud Lee Flood House #2 exist in the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley. A front elevation for the "Maud Lee Flood House" dated 10/05/1911. (See "Bliss & Faville architectural drawings, [ca. 1900-1920],"Accessed 2013-10-09.) Tel: 415.563.2900 (2011).

San Francisco County Assessor Number: 0565060

PCAD id: 17270