National Register of Historic Places in San Francisco

National Register #91000563: Niantic Storeship Site
Northwest Corner of Clay and Sansome
5 February 2012
National Register #91000563: Niantic Storeship Site
Historic Marker in Arcade on Clay Street
5 February 2012
Abandoned Ships in Yerba Buena Cove c.1849 Abandoned Ships in Yerba Buena Cove c.1849
Photo From Historic American Buildings Survey
Niantic Hotel c.1850 Niantic Hotel c.1850

The Niantic was built as a R.I. whaler (or English ship) in 1844; used until 1849 under Capt. Henry Cleveland. Hauled (stern in) to foot of Clay Street and converted into a hotel in spring of 1849. Superstructure burned on April 5, 1851. Another Niantic Hotel replaced ship. In 1872 the Niantic Block was built at NW corner of Clay and Sansome.

Photo and Text from Historic American Buildings Survey

(Click Photos to Zoom)

National Register #91000563
Niantic Storeship Site
Northwest Corner Clay and Sansome Streets
Built 1849

After carrying 248 gold-seekers from Panama to San Francisco Bay, the Niantic was beached in the summer of 1849 at the corner of Clay and Sansome Streets.

She then served as a storeship earning her owners $20,000 per month until she... burned to the turn of her bilge in the great San Francisco Fire of May 1851.

The Niantic was the furthest inland of the 44 ships known to be buried in downtown San Francisco. More than any others, she was described by contemporaries, drawn and captured in lithography.

Source: San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Two Transamerica Center - a twenty-story highrise designed William L. Pereira & Associates and built in 1980 - stands on the northwest corner of Clay and Sansome, five blocks from today's waterfront. (Pereira's most famous building is the neighboting Transamerica Pyramid built in 1972.)

The Niantic is commemorated by an inconspicuous marker in an arcade on the Clay street side of the building. To read the marker and view more images, please see California Historic Landmark 88.

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