In which state are the infamous 'Shanghai Tunnels' located?
The 'Old Portland Underground', also known as the 'Shanghai Tunnels', is a group of subterranean passages throughout Portland, Oregon, USA. The basements of many downtown bars and hotels were linked to the Willamette River waterfront through the tunnels, for supplies to be moved from ships docked there directly to basements for storage.
The tunnels ran beneath the city, allowing a hidden world to exist. These catacombs connected to the many saloons, brothels, gambling parlors, and opium dens. These attractions drew victims for their captors. To 'shanghai' meant to capture and illegally sell able-bodied men to sea captains for crew and women for the sex slave trade. The men were forced to work on ships bound for the Orient with no pay.
Victims were known to be drugged, kidnapped, then dropped or dragged into the tunnels through trapdoors. Once in the tunnels, they were locked in specially designed prison cells and held captive until they were shipped off as slave laborers. The majority of people who were 'shanghaied' was between 1850-1941.
There is no historical record of 'shanghaiing' being practiced in the tunnels. The mysterious labyrinth of catacombs beneath Portland does exist. Historians and media sources assert that even in the event of a massive cover-up effort, it is unlikely there would be any evidence of the practice from that era. Regardless, the city offers daily presentations to tourists who enjoy mystery, history and crime stories.