The Emperor's Bridge Campaign

to honor the life + advance the legacy of Emperor Norton

Emperor Norton, c.1878. Photograph by the Bradley & Rulofson studio. Collection of the California Historical Society.

Emperor Norton, c.1878. Photograph by the Bradley & Rulofson studio. Collection of the California Historical Society.

This photograph of Emperor Norton, taken late in his life, is one of the most iconic and poignant images of the Emperor.

He looks a little annoyed and a little confused.

Is he annoyed and confused by us?

Shouldn't he be?


Whether you're new to the Emperor's story or an "inveterate Nortonian," you're sure to learn more about the Emperor — eccentric and fascinating; progressive and visionary; humane and heroic — in the pages linked below.

These pages — also linked in the "Emperor Norton" drop-down menu at left — include:

  • Our biographical essay on Emperor Norton
  • Our gallery of photographs of the Emperor — the most comprehensive collection anywhere online
  • Documentation of the Emperor's three "bridge proclamations" of 1872, setting out the original vision for the Emperor Norton Bridge — known as the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge
  • Resources for further learning, including our recommended reading and three short video documentaries


Click below for more:

»»» Life
»»» Photographs
»»» Bridge proclamations
»»» Further learning 

© 2017 The Emperor's Bridge Campaign  |  Site design by Polished  |  Background: Detail from image courtesy of Eric Fischer