Historic Transplanted Marin Mansion asks $12M

A photo illustration of the 118-year-old Moffitt House at 8 West Shore Road (Getty Images, Zillow)

A historic San Francisco mansion saved 60 years ago when it was shipped by barge to Belvedere has hit the market at $11.95 million.

The owners of the former Pacific Heights home have listed it at 8 West Shore Road, the San Francisco Business Times reported. It was listed at $5.5 million in 2018 and sold in January 2019 for $3.7 million.

The 118-year-old house known as the Moffitt Mansion not only survived the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. It dodged a wrecking ball when a concerned architect sawed it in half and hauled it across the bay to Marin County six decades later.

The remodeled two-story manse isn’t any worse for wear. The 5,728-square-foot home has five bedrooms and five baths spread across a nearly half-acre lot across from Richardson Bay.


With high ceilings and hardwood floors, the gray-colored mansion has four fireplaces, custom millwork, a gourmet kitchen and a dining room with dual walls of French doors, according to the listing.

The living room has floor-to-ceiling windows and retractable glass doors that open onto a swimming pool and olive trees. The master bedroom has a spa-like bath and private balcony. There’s an office, a billiards room and a three-car garage.

It was June 1962 when architect Norman Gilroy set out to save the dilapidated mansion slated to be torn down for apartments.

The home was built in 1904 for $30,000 by William Knowles at 1818 Broadway for Dr. Herbert Moffitt, who oversaw the reorganization of the medical school at UC San Francisco, where buildings still bear his name.

Gilroy paid $3,500 for the aging house, and when the wind was right both halves were transported across San Francisco Bay on a 285-foot barge, a 12-hour journey to Belvedere. The entire move cost more than $13,000, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

(Facebook/Mike Fusello)
(Facebook/Mike Fusello)

“It is an exciting opportunity for us to represent this example of historic San Francisco architecture that has traveled across the bay on a barge to find a new home,” Sally Williamson, co-listing agent along with Janet Williamson for Compass, told the Business Times. “This Belvedere residence truly is a showplace and one of the most admired in Marin.”

— Bartholomew Fund

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