Photo taken by Jarek Piórkowski
Let me guess (again), you’re thinking illegal fireworks and other nifty back-of-the-store deals, right? Wrong. We’re talking even darker. That’s right! We’re talking about the Chinatown tunnels. You might be asking yourself, “What are you talking about?" Well, it’s time to stop guessing and start digging!
Chinatown has not always been a San Francisco destination; it’s been more commonly associated with being related to the stranger and to the darker side of the occult. So drinking herbal potions made of crushed rhino horn isn’t your cup of tea? Well, skip the green tea and keep on the look out for the real party place, an opium den.
You may not find a den today, but you may find the remnants of one by looking below your feet. Although there is no proof, rumor has it that there' s a wide system of tunnels below Chinatown that have been used for everything from opium dens to smuggling slave girls to mobsters escaping from the police! According to Dr. Weirde, the 1906 earthquake covered up most of these tunnels, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be found. Still think it’s a rumor?
The History Channel show Cities of the Underworld recently visited San Francisco, and one of the places they checked out were these exact tunnels. Recently, someone mentioned to me that even PG&E knows of their existence and even location, so maybe a little more digging will bring us deeper into the underbelly. Supposedly one of the entrances can be found in the Donaldina Cameron House, which housed its share of refugees from the slave trade in the past.
This video was found on YouTube. For the full clip, please visit the History Channel
If you want to try your luck before digging, how about a fortune cookie? If you're lucky, it'll lead you in the right direction.