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Pershing Square is named after General John "Black Jack" Pershing. The open area is located next to the Main Post in the Presidio.
In the early years of the twentieth century, General John "Black Jack" Pershing was commander of the Presidio. While pursuing Mexican revolutionary Francisco "Pancho" Villa in 1915, a tragic fire at the Pershing home claimed the lives of his wife and three daughters. The flagpole in the center of Pershing square marks the site of the house.