SiteWorks: San Francisco performance 1969-85

Entry to the St Francis Hotel, 335 Powell Street on Union Square

T.R. Uthco (Doug Hall, Jody Proctor), Social Experiment: The Avant Guard Security (22nd September 1975)



In September 1975 President Gerald Fiord visited San Francisco. A few days before, “Manson Family” member, Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme had attempted to assassinate him in Sacramento. For his protection San Francisco organized the most extensive security the city had ever seen. As a way to explore this security environment and to test its limits, Jody Proctor approximated the appearance of a police or security officer to see if he could infiltrate the force. To our astonishment, he was accepted as an authority figure by civilians and officials alike. That afternoon, Sarah Jane Moore attempted to shoot Ford from a location close to where Proctor had been standing earlier in the day. (Hall 2013a)

The most massive security forces ever assembled for an American President were available to President Ford when he visited San Francisco in September 1975. Despite these precautions, he was nearly gunned down by Sara Jane Moore. The Avant Guard, a service of T.R.Uthco, Inc., was part of that force […] The Avant Guard (second from right) stands at attention with members of the San Francisco Police Department. Shortly after this photo was taken, a shot fired at President Ford as he left the St. Francis Hotel. The Avant Guard was nowhere to be found. (T.R.Uthco 1976: 28-9)