Dig for SF's transport terminal unearths artifacts

By BETH DUFF-BROWN | December 25, 2011 | 11:05 AM EST

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The big dig for San Francisco's multibillion dollar transportation hub has unearthed some artifacts from the city's Gold Rush days. There are opium pipes from a Chinese laundry, chipped chamber pots, animal bone toothbrushes and rusted iron pulleys from the iron smelts.

The 70 artifacts have city archeologists abuzz with excitement and local residents pondering the ground beneath their feet.

San Franciscans and tourists can see the artifacts dating back to the mid-to-late 1800s in the lobby of the high-rise overlooking the construction project in the South of Market financial district.

The swanky neighborhood today covers the same blocks once inhabited by working-class Irish immigrants and Chinese laborers who lived in the Gold Rush port known as Yerba Buena Cove.