In 1872, Emperor Norton issued three Proclamations setting out the original vision for a great bay-spanning bridge linking Oakland and San Francisco via Yerba Buena Island.
When the bridge opened in 1936, it was given the unofficial name San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Locals just call it the Bay Bridge. The State of California continues to recognize this as the historic name of the entire bridge system.
Since the early 1960s, though, state lawmakers have passed resolutions authoring additional honorary names for some 30 state-owned bridges and bridge systems.
Since 2013, The Emperor's Bridge Campaign, a nonprofit that works toadvance the legacy of the Emperor, has been leading an effort to persuade California state lawmakers simply to add EMPEROR NORTON BRIDGE as an honorary name for the Bay Bridge — leaving in place all existing names for the bridge and its parts. Our current goal is to sponsor a state legislative resolution that would do this in 2022 — the 150th anniversary of Emperor Norton's three “bridge Proclamations” of 1872.