After nearly a two-year silence, authorities close to a 1933 cold case revealed, on condition of anonymity that more than sand and timbers were dug up during excavations near the new InterContinental’s hotel, The Clement Monterey.
The discoveries shed new light on the dark shadows of that chilly Wednesday night, March 8, 1933, when the vault wall of the Cannery Row Bank blasted wide and thieves made off with newly transferred cash and gold from the Federal Reserve in San Francisco. The well planned robbery occurred during a nationwide four-day closure of all banks, imposed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, to stave off panic and restore confidence in the country’s banking system. Bank closure and a robbery – a coincidence…or was it?
According to old newspaper accounts of the event, passersby witnessed two men flee the bank on Irving Avenue and turn right onto Ocean View Boulevard (changed in 1958 to its present name of Cannery Row). Cries of robbery echoing down alleyways brought police to action and immediately hot on their trail. A dozen or so officers chased the robbers into cannery warehouses, searching a labyrinth of sorting tables and conveyor belts, only to loose them in the maze of pylons and piers below. No trace of the fugitives was ever found at the time.
The newly discovered evidence will be displayed at the Monterey Mirror Maze & Laser Challenge at the Intercontinental Clement Monterey Hotel (751 Cannery Row). Authorities hope visitors to the exhibit will shed new light on this cold case and help solve the mystery of Cannery Row.