Antiques Discovered Beneath Downtown Construction Site

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The proposed Transbay Transit Center.

    You never know what you'll find just a few feet below the pavement, and construction workers on the new Transbay Terminal got a shock recently when they uncovered a treasure trove of buried antiques.

    Many of the items date back about a hundred and fifty years, and they paint a hazy picture of life in the little seacoast village that had until then been known as Yerba Buena. It's a little piece of the Gold Rush, frozen in the dirt.

    Liquor bottles seem to dominate the findings, but there are also tents, dolls, and home furnishings, according to the Examiner.

    Fortunately, many San Francisco construction projects are required to have an archaeologist on staff, so a crew was able to swoop in and delicately remove the relics. They've now been removed to a laboratory for cataloging.

    But they might return someday: when the Transbay Terminal is complete, the antiques might just be placed on display. That's still many years away, with an estimated completion date of 2017. And because this is San Francisco, that really means "some vague time after 2017."

    Although construction has barely begun, the terminal faces a new challenge from incoming Governor Jerry Brown. He's threatened to choke off the supply of redevelopment dollars in order to fund education. As one SFist commenter points out, "Having been mayor of a city that has benefitted from redevelopment funds, it seems rather bizarre that he is seeking to diminish them."