Why is it called the Golden Gate Bridge? Well, this is a question that a lot of people ask themselves. In fact, many San Franciscans don't know the story of the bridge's name, so you're not alone! Keep reading for the skinny on why how this golden state icon got its name.
First things first: why is it called the Golden Gate Bridge? There are many stories as to how the bridge got its name, but at the very core of California history is that fact that it was named after the Golden Gate Straight. The straight is a channel of water that connects the San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean. Since the bridge straddles the Golden Gate Straight, it makes sense that it would be called the Golden Gate Bridge!
How did the Golden Gate Straight gets its name? This is where stories diverge. One story is that back in 1846, Captain John C. Fremont, a topographical engineer for the U.S. Army, named it Chrysopylae after a harbor in Instanbul named Chrysoceras or Golden Horn. Chrysopylae literally means Golden Gate.
Another story is that the same man, John C. Fremont, first viewed the straight and claimed that it was the "a golden gate to trade with the Orient." He published a journal using the name, and it stuck.
A lot of folks believe that the Golden Gate Straight and Golden Gate Bridge were named after California's famous gold rush, but this is not the case. The gold rush had nothing to do with the naming of the Golden Gate.
Those wondering "Why is it called the Golden Gate Bridge?" have probably noticed that the bridge is actually gold. Well, technically the bridge is painted a color called "orange vermillion," which is also known as "international orange." Its bright color was selected because of its name and location - making it truly "the Golden Gate Bridge!"