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Ships under Financial District

Unfinished History

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Photograph of Yerba Buena Cove in 1851

Map of ships buried under San Francisco Financial District.

Map by Sam Manera, 2013, based on an earlier map by Ron Filion, 2000.


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Collage depicting ships piled into Yerba Buena cove by Satty, from "Visions of Frisco" edited by Walter Medeiros, Regent Press 2007

During the height of the gold excitement, there were at least five hundred ships stranded in the harbor, some without even a watchman on board, and none with a crew sufficiently large to work her. Many of these vessels never sailed again. Some rotted away and sank at their moorings. (Herbert Asbury in "The Barbary Coast")


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1851 cove map closeup. The shadowed area is roughly the outline of Yerba Buena Cove when the city was founded and there are more than 70 old wooden ships buried in the old cove that is now part of the city.

Ships Under the Financial District

The Niantic

The Euphemia

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Photo: Chris Carlsson

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Photo: Chris Carlsson

A ship dug up in 2005 at Spear and Folsom was discovered to be the Candace, an 1830s sailing ship that had found its last anchorage under the growing city.

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These are the finished buildings on the site above where the Candace was found.

Photo: Chris Carlsson


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