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US: Steamboat that sank in 1888 is found in San Francisco Bay

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By Euronews
US: Steamboat that sank in 1888 is found in San Francisco Bay

<p>A passenger steamship that sank more than a hundred years ago has been found – and it’s still intact.</p> <p>The City of Chester vessel was found in San Francisco Bay near the Golden Gate Bridge, officials said.</p> <p>The 202-foot long City of Chester sank after colliding with the steamer Oceanic in August 1888. Sixteen people were killed.</p> <p>James Delgado, director of Maritime Heritage at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (<span class="caps">NOAA</span>), said the ship was encased in mud and still ‘very much intact’.</p> <p>The collision fuelled a racially charged backlash against the Oceanic’s mostly Chinese crew, despite their having rescued most of the City of Chester’s 106 passengers, Delgado said.</p> <div align="center"> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p>The City of Chester sank 126 years ago. It was just found near the Golden Gate Bridge, again: <a href="http://t.co/ij8SXzCE9n">http://t.co/ij8SXzCE9n</a> <a href="http://t.co/wr2qFusYzX">pic.twitter.com/wr2qFusYzX</a></p>— SpeedReads (@SpeedReads) <a href="https://twitter.com/SpeedReads/statuses/459208120221171712">April 24, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> </div> <p>A boat equipped with sonar scanners captured the first underwater images of the City of Chester last May. But it took <span class="caps">NOAA</span> researchers nine months to review the data and reconstruct images of the ship, which came to rest upright at the edge of a sandbank, the organisation said in a statement.</p> <p>High-resolution sonar imagery identified the hull of the ship rising 18 feet from the sea floor and a large gash on the vessel’s left side, <span class="caps">NOAA</span> said.</p> <p><span class="caps">NOAA</span>’s predecessor, the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, located the sunken ship by dragging a wire from a tugboat and snagging it, Delgado said. The last reported sighting was by a diver in 1889.</p> <p><span class="caps">NOAA</span> is building a website to tell the story of the City of Chester and is planning a San Francisco exhibit of sonar images and historic photos of the ship later this year. But there are no plans to raise the ship.</p> <p>Delgado said the tale of the City of Chester is important because it deals with timely issues of immigration and racism, and because it is a reminder of discoveries yet to be made in “the world’s largest museum.”</p>