U.S. Coast Guard Station San Francisco is currently housed on Yerba Buena Island. Yerba Buena is Spanish for Good Herb; this is in reference to a variety of mint found by early occupants throughout the island. At one time Yerba Buena Island was referred to as Goat Island for the fact that free-range goats occupied the island.
In 1872, a section of the island was established as an official base for the U.S. Lighthouse Service. Construction of a lighthouse (Admiral's Light) began in 1873 and was completed in 1875 with its official lighting. In 1958, the lighthouse was automated which continues to stand a vigilant watch to this day. Prior to the 1873 construction, a bell was used in place of the light and audible fog signal.
During this time, the U.S. Lighthouse Service also maintained west coast light ships at the depot. This was the result of moving the original depot from Mare Island in the North Bay. The light ships stood watch along the coast, at dangerous points where it was impractical to build lighthouses.
In 1933, a tunnel was bored through the island to complete the building of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. With this construction came oppurtunity, expansion, and a new mode of transportation to the island. The project was completed in 1936, which was the same time Treasure Island was in the early stages of development. Treasure Island was constructed by mud dredged out of the north bay and transported from Sacramento. Treasure Island is connected to Yerba Buena Island's north shore by way of an isthmus. The original use was for an airport, but instead a host to the 1939 World's Fair. With the start of World War II, the island was turned over to the U.S. Navy until 1993.
Along with all of this development, in 1939 The U.S. Lighthouse Service was formally incorporated into the U.S. Coast Guard. This merge also brought the possession and control of the current property, which has since housed a search and rescue and law enforcement unit, currently known as Coast Guard Station San Francisco. Thirty one years later, in 1970, Coast Guard Group San Francisco administration and housing complex was built and currently stands.