Found ship in the Financial District : LUSENET : San Francisco History : One Thread

When I was showing my mother around San Francisco last Sept 8th, 2001 or so we happened upon a construction site that had unearthed an old goldrush-era ship that had been dry-docked and used as a warehouse then I think buried or such and built over. the news was there as well as archiologists. She has been asking me for ever about information on this discovery. I have been unable to find anything.. can anyone help with links or details?

thanks in advance

-- a concerned party (, July 27, 2002


You're referring to the "General Harrison, a Gold Rush ship that has been buried under the streets of San Francisco's Financial District for about 150 years" and here's the Chronicle's original story: file=/c/a/2001/09/08/MN214923.DTL

This is kind of odd: this site says the Yank Sing Restaurant is built on top of the General Harrison (but maybe there were two such ships):

Here's another background goodie, though it stops short of 2001: San Francisco Archaeology (great music, by the way):

I used this search string in google (mem. to self: must patronize other web search engines as well): archaeology "gold rush" ship "san francisco" "financial district"-- this got me quite a few hits. Many of those links have interesting information on other archaelogical discoveries in downtown San Francisco.

I love the idea that, by law, construction has to stop while the archaeologists evaluate the find. It must have some developers tearing out as much of their hair as they did when they found out they had to contribute to affordable housing to get a building permit.

-- Rosa (, July 28, 2002.

The History Department at Cal. State Hayward has an exibit on it. It appears that they have lots of materials, including something from the guy who sunk the ship there. It had something to do with making it a warf...and making money of course...

-- Gern Blanston (, September 22, 2002.

I was one of the archaeologists who worked on the ship.

here's our website and link to photos from the dig:

You're right, the restaurant Yank Sing did once exist on top of the ship, but it was torn down in order to build a hotel. This allowed us the opportunity to find her again. Among the findings were several cases of French wine, bolts of cloth, soda water and beer bottles, tobacco pipes, and masses of melted-together brass tacks and glass trade beads.

The preliminary findings of this research are available in print in American Archaeology Magazine, Archaeology Magazine, Sea History Magazine, The archives of the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper, a book by Morton Beebe called "San Francisco:City by the Bay," as well as numerous other publications. A search on Google with the words "General Harrison" will turn up a lot of it.

Our research on the recovered artifacts and the ship's construction, as well as its conversion to a warehouse, are still ongoing and should be available soon.

We were very excited by the interest, and the visitors we had to the site, so I'm happy to be available to share some more info.

Regards, Dale Beevers Archaeologist at Archeo-Tec, Inc.

-- Dale Beevers (, November 02, 2002.

I am the chief engineer of the Club Quarters Hotel that now rests on that site. My son works for Ryan engineering that uncovered the ship.I have sifted through the dirt that was removed from the site, as I have on many occaisions on similiar digs, and have in my posesion a collection of the bottles from the dig site. I am planning to display these bottles for the guests in our hotel in our up-coming opening.

-- george azich (, March 07, 2003.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ