Speed Reads

Tales of the deep

Shipwreck that killed 128 people discovered near Golden Gate Bridge

Buried in mud only a half mile from San Francisco is a shipwreck that could still hold over 100 bodies. Called the "Bay Area's Titanic," the steamship The City of Rio De Janeiro sank within 10 minutes of hitting rocks outside the Golden Gate nearly 114 years ago. The majority of its 210 passengers, most of them Chinese immigrants, didn't have time to escape.

"It is a mud-filled tomb," maritime historian James Delgado told The San Francisco Chronicle.

While many have searched for the wreck, none had been able to officially locate it until last month. Then, scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found the ship using sonar and a remote-controlled sub. "You could see the bow clearly, and then the stern, all buried in 113 years of mud," said a researcher affiliated with the discovery.

"The location of the wreck has been one of the region's biggest maritime mysteries," says The Chronicle's Carl Nolte. And now it's been solved. --Nico Lauricella