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19th century shipwreck located near Golden Gate Bridge

SS City of Chester.

San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park

SS City of Chester.

City of Chester

San Francisco Chronicle

Newspaper illustration of the collision between RMS Oceanic and SS City of Chester.

City of Chester

Robert V. Schwemmer, NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries

Modern view of the Golden Gate Channel and approximate location of the SS City of Chester.


In 1888, a passenger steamship called the City of Chester set out from San Francisco with 90 passengers headed to Eureka. The ship never reached its destination.

Obscured by fog, the City of Chester was hit by another ship and sank, killing 16 people — including two children — in what would become one of San Francisco's worst maritime disasters. Now, more than a century later, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has located the shipwreck , near the Golden Gate Bridge in the San Francisco Bay.

Jim Delgado, director of maritime heritage at NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, joins the show to talk about the discovery. 


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