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Associated with the firms network

Hoffman and Clinch, Architects; Hoffman and Mooser, Architects; Hoffman and Schmidt, Architects; Hoffman, Victor, Architect; Hoffmann and Curtis, Architects


Professional History

Résumé

Principal, Victor Hoffman, Architect, San Francisco, CA, c. 1857.

Partner, Hoffman and Mooser, Architects, San Francisco, CA, c. 1859-1864. In 1861, Hoffman and Mooser had their office in Room #36 Lyceum Building on the northwest corner of Montgomery and Washington Streets. (See San Francisco California City Directory, 1861, p. 371.)

Partner, Hoffman and Schmidt, Architects, San Francisco, CA, 1864-1867.

Principal, Victor Hoffman, Architect, San Jose, CA, c. 1870-1874. In 1874, Hoffman waa one of two architects listed in the "Classified List of Advertisers," of the San Jose City Directory, 1874. The other was Theodore Lenzen. He had his office in Room #15 of the McLaughlin and Ryland Bank Building in 1874. (See San Jose City Directory, 1874, p. 46.) San Jose had four practitioners in 1874: Hoffman, Lenzen, J.T. Burket, and Levi Goodrich. (See San Jose, California, City Directory, 1874, p. 123.)

Partner, Hoffman and Clinch, Architects, San Francisco, CA, 1878. This firm had its office at 126 Kearny Street in San Francisco. (See San Francisco Directory for the Year Commencing February 1878, [San Francisco: Henry G. Langley, Publisher, 1878], p. 908.)

Partner, Hoffmann and [John M.] Curtis, Architects, San Francisco, CA, 1881. This firm had its office at 528 California Street, Rooms #14-15, in 1881. (See San Francisco, California, City Directory, 1881, p. 473.)

Principal, Victor Hoffman, Architect, San Francisco, CA, c. 1883. In 1883, Hoffman had an office located at 319 California Street in San Francisco. (See the San Francisco, California, City Directory, 1883, p. 1106.)

Personal

Relocation

Victor Hoffman was born c. 1832 in Prussia. The details of his residency in the US are somewhat confusing.

A record exists for a "Victor Hoffman" traveling from Bremen, Germany, to New York, NY, arriving in the latter port on 09/25/1851. (The ship was apparently called the Cariolanus or, more likely, the Coriolanus, but no record of a pre-1874 ship by than name can be found.) (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1851; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: M237, 1820-1897; Microfilm Roll: Roll 105; Line: 17; List Number: 1419, accessed 10/14/2016.)

It is possible that this 1851 did not refer to the architect, or, alternatively, it was the architect, but he returned to live in France during part of the 1850s or 1860s. He may have spent some time in France before or after coming to the US, as his wife, Ernestine, was a French national and his eldest son, Victor, Jr., was recorded as having been born there.

Records do not agree consistently, however, on where his son was born. Some indicate France, some say CA. If his son was born in France, it is conceivable that he and/or Ernestine returned there to have him, or that Victor, Jr, was not his biologically, but he adopted him after he married Ernestine. It is also possible that Victor, Jr., had been born in CA, and that some of the records were incorrect. Both the 1880 US Census, and a county voter's record of 1898, however, listed a Victor Hoffman as having been born in France. Again, the former record could have been wrong, and the latter record may have referred to another Victor Hoffman, a builder-contractor, not related.

The likelihood of Victor, Jr., having been born in the CA, was bolstered by the 1860 US Census. This document listed Victor Hoffman and William Mooser, Sr., together, suggesting that they may have been living together. Hoffman was 28 and Mooser 26 at the time. Hoffman had a personal estate worth $200, significantly less than what he would own 10 years later. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1860; Census Place: San Francisco District 3, San Francisco, California; Roll: M653_67; Page: 18; Image: 18; Family History Library Film: 803067, accessed 10/14/2016.)

In any case, records do agree that his two daughters, Maria and Edith, were born in CA, the elder in 1854 and the younger in 1864.

He became a naturalized US citizen in the 12th District Court of San Francisco, CA, on 09/03/1861. (A county voter record of 1886 indicated that he had been naturalized on 09/13/1861. See Ancestry.com, Source Citation: California State Library, California History Section; Great Registers, 1866-1898; Collection Number: 4 - 2A; CSL Roll Number: 59; FHL Roll Number: 977210, accessed 04/01/2020.)

Once in the US, Hoffman appeared to lead a relatively restless existence, changing home addresses and business partners frequently.

According to Santa Clara County Voter's Registers from 1870, Hoffman lived in San Jose, CA and registered to vote there on 03/02/1870. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation California State Library, California History Section; Great Registers, 1866-1898; Collection Number: 4 - 2A; CSL Roll Number: 124; FHL Roll Number: 977287, accessed 10/14/2016.) His San Jose household included his wife, three children, and 5 boarders or renters. The boarders included three born in Germany, one in France, and one in Illinois. (Both he and his wife would have been proficient in both languages, making adjustment to the US easier for recent immigrants.) The census indicated that his real estate had a value of $17,500, a considerable sum in 1870, and his personal estate consisted of $1,000. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1870; Census Place: San Jose, Santa Clara, California; Roll: M593_88; Page: 288B; Image: 22268; Family History Library Film: 545587, accessed 10/14/2016.) According to the San Jose City Directory, 1874, (p. 46), Hoffman lived at 134 6th Street in San Jose.

The 1880 US Census listed Victor "Hoffmann" residing at 1623 Dupont Street in the city's Telegraph Hill neighborhood. A "John Hoffman," perhaps a relative, lived nearby on Kramer Place. Hoffmann lived with Ernestine, son, Victor, and daughter, Edith. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation: Year: 1880; Census Place: San Francisco, San Francisco, California; Roll: 73; Page: 172A; Enumeration District: 014, accessed 04/01/2020.) The Hoffmans continued to live at 1623 Dupont Street in San Francisco in 1881. (See San Francisco, California, City Directory, 1881, p. 473.)

Hoffman resided at 526 Filbert Street in 1886 and 752 Bryant Street in 1888, both San Francisco addresses. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation California State Library, California History Section; Great Registers, 1866-1898; Collection Number: 4 - 2A; CSL Roll Number: 59; FHL Roll Number: 977210, accessed 10/14/2016 and Ancestry.com, Source Citation California State Library, California History Section; Great Registers, 1866-1898; Collection Number: 4 - 2A; CSL Roll Number: 66; FHL Roll Number: 977626, accessed 10/14/2016.)

Spouse

He married Ernestine Gardet (born c. 1825 in France).

Children

In 1870, Victor and Ernestine had three children living at home, Maria Hoffman, (born c. 1854 in CA), Victor, Jr., (born c. 1860 in France or CA),and Edith Hoffman, (born c. 1864 in CA). The 1870 US Census indicated that the three had all been born in CA, while the 1880 US Census, stated, probably mistakenly, that Victor, Jr., had been born in France.In 1880, he and Ernestine had two children living with them--Victor and Edith.

Records also indicated that a baby named "Victor Hoffman" died at age 4 months in 1859, although there is no way of knowing whether or not this was Victor and Ernestine's child.

Victor Hoffman, Jr., would become a mason and building contractor in the Bay Area. He may have moved to Manila, the Philippines, where a man by that name resided in 1916.

Biographical Notes

Hoffman's name was sometimes written "Hoffmann," which may have been the original German spelling. Also, his name was relatively common in the 19th century, complexifying research on him.


PCAD id: 5992