Palace of the
Legion of Honor
Mrs. Spreckels fell in love with the French Pavilion at San Francisco's
Panama Pacific International Exposition. This pavilion was a replica of
the Palais de la Légion d'Honneur in Paris, one of the
distinguished eighteenth-century landmarks on the left bank of the
close of the 1915 exposition, Alma persuaded
her husband, Adolph B. Spreckels, who was a sugar magnate, to put up
the money and the French government granted
to construct a permanent replica, but the First World War delayed
groundbreaking until 1921.
George Applegarth was chosen to design this three-quarter-scale
adaptation of the
eighteenth-century Parisian original. Construction began on a remote
site known as Land's End--one of the most beautiful settings imaginable
for any museum overlooking the mouth of the bay, and today, the Golden Gate Bridge.
California Palace of the Legion of Honor was
completed in 1924, and on Armistice Day of that year its doors opened
to the public and dedication was made to those lost during the war.