(Softcover) Three Generations of a Family and the City's History, 1864-1948" This is the story of three generations of a San Francisco family–the Costellos and the Hirschbergs–told against the backdrop of the city’s history. The story begins with Mary Rafferty, an Irish Catholic from County Galway, who, in 1864 at the age of 14, sailed from Ireland around Cape Horn to San Francisco. Mary’s passage aboard a cargo sailing ship was secured by contracting her into seven years of indentured servitude with a family in San Francisco’s South Park. After marrying Michael Costello, a shoemaker from Boston, in 1871, Mary had four children. With Michael’s death in 1881, his brother John Frederick Costello, a blacksmith, arrived in San Francisco to help the family. Mary and John Frederick married and had three children. This story is also about Kitty Costello, Mary’s youngest daughter, who, in 1901, met a dapper Jewish Prussian on the Powell Street cable car on her commute to work. When Kitty eloped with Barney, Mary Costello would have nothing to do with her daughter and Jewish husband. In the aftermath of the 1906 Earthquake and Fire, the families reconciled. The lives of the Costellos and the Hirschbergs were intertwined with the economic effects of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, the anti-Chinese movement of the 1870s, the growth of labor unions in the 1880s and 1890s, and the transformation of public transportation from horse cars to cable cars.
Katherine works with her husband, Robert Hitchman, producing Photograph America Newsletter in Novato, California. As technical associate, she designs, develops, and manages the website and maintains their computer systems. Katherine is the author of: "A Leg Up--How I Learned to Horseback Ride, Starting at Age 40," available through online booksellers as Amazon.com, "Dancing in the Kitchen: Recipes from a Tap Dancer," available through Blurb, and "A San Francisco Portrait--Three Generations of a Family and the City's History: 1864-1948" just published through Blurb.