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Recently I read Jack Andrews book Samuel Yellin Metalworker through Inter Library Loan, and in looking through all the job cards, saw that Yellin’s shop did some gates and grills at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, the city where I work. I’d thought all of Yellin’s work, at least his public work, was in the East. This was an exciting chance to see a great smith’s work up close and personal. Little did I know. A quick call to Grace Cathedral, just to check the hours they were open and see if anyone knew specifically about the gates and grills, put me in touch with the Cathedral Archivist, who knew what I was talking about and suggested I call when I came by. What an eyeful! The Archivist brought the key to the Grace Chapel Gates, that featured one of Yellin’s signature grotesques, then starting with the Bishop’s Door, thought to be Yellin’s work but not definitely attributable. Clearly wrought iron and nicely done. Then onto a rail done by Harvey Yellin in a side chapel, the slight inconsistancies in the twisting showing it was done by a smith, not a machine. Then I was shown the chancel gates surrounding the main altar, with the heavy, captured bolt that connected the gate to the floor and the opposite gate. The originals by Yellin and, when the altar was moved, extra gates to match that were made in the 60’s, showing much thinner decorative bosses and an overall less complex presentation. Can’t say what was really different, but you could definitely tell the new from the old. The Grace Chapel Gates, 20 feet high, decoration so elaborate I could spend a years trying to figure out how they were done. Huge, incised twists that the Archivist thought were multiple pieces. Another grotesque on the bolt handle. The doorjamb (Gatejamb?) where the gates overlapped was most impressive. When my guide offered to hold the 12 foot ladder so I could get closer to the dusty finials at the top of the gate, I leapt at the opportunity and I’ve got an SD card on my phone full of details. All this was during a longish lunch hour from work. Got back to the office but couldn’t quite focus on the work at hand, I wonder why? . The archivist is there Monday through Wednesday. If you find yourself in San Francisco, on Nob Hill at Taylor and California Street, check out the Mr. Yellin’s work.