Each of our tuk tuks is named in honor of a significant woman in San Francisco’s history. Women have done some amazing things in the history of the city by the bay; much of which has been underreported or long forgotten.
We salute these women who definitely left their mark on San Francisco history.
Mary Ellen Pleasant - Mary Ellen was born into slavery in Georgia in 1814 (although some records say 1812). She moved to San Francisco in 1852 a free woman and became the West Coast terminus of the Underground Railroad, finding jobs in the homes of rich San Franciscans for escaped slaves who made it to California. She became a wealthy entrepreneur and landowner. Almost 100 years before Rosa Parks, Mary Ellen sued a local transportation company for not letting African Americans ride. She won and San Francisco’s streetcars became integrated.
Isadora Duncan - Isadora Duncan was born in SF in 1877. She is known as the mother of Modern Dance. As a teenager, Isadora and her sister opened a dance school for girls in their home in San Francisco. She became incredibly popular in England and Europe, where she opened several more dance schools. She was known for defying social constraints and embracing free love.
Juana Biornes - Born in 1802, Juana Biornes is often called the “Mother of San Francisco”. In the 1830s, sheran a successful ranch, in what is now North Beach. She sold her crops to sailors and offered sanctuary to many refugees. She became a well-known farmer, healer, caregiver, midwife, and bone-setter, all of which she accomplished without ever learning to read or write. After separating from her husband - something almost unheard of in her day - she became one of the few women in California to own property under her own name.