San Francisco Points of Interest

Bronze Sundial in Golden Gate Park
1 February 2012
(Click Photo to Zoom)
Bronze Sundial
Museum Drive
Golden Gate Park
Created 1907

This sculpture in bronze and cast stone was created by M. Earl Cummings and donated to the park by the National Society of Colonial Dames of America in California to commemorate three great navigators: Sir Francis Drake, Juan de Cabrillo, and Fortuo Ximines.

The Sundial is located in front of the de Young Museum across Museum Drive from the Apple Cider Press.

The sculpture contributes to the Golden Gate Historic Park District.

Source: NRHP Nomination for Golden Gate Park Historic District submitted July 2004

Melvin Earl Cummings (1876-1936) was born in Salt Lake City. As a teenager Cummings was apprenticed to a wood carver in decorating the Mormon Temple.

He moved to San Francisco in 1896 and won a scholarship to the Mark Hopkins Institute of Art where he was a pupil of Douglas Tilden.

After three years at L'École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, funded by Phoebe Hearst, Cummings became a Professor of Sculpture at the Mark Hopkins Institute, a position he held until 1915. During this time, he shared a studio with sculptor Arthur Putnam.

In 1904 Cummings was appointed to the San Francisco Board of Park Commissioners, and In 1906 he began teaching at the UC Berkeley School of Architecture. He remained with both of these institution until his death.

Several of Cummings works were created for Golden Gate Park:

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