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Shipwreck Sunday

Fireball Felicity Ace

Fireball Felicity Ace
The Felicity Ace departed Germany with 4000 luxury cars including Porsches and Bentleys... bound for Rhode Island.  The 650 foot vessel caught fire early in the crossing.  They tried everything to put it out but alas she tilted and made a generous donation to Poseidon just off the Azores, delivering another blow to supply chain issues and the environment. Apparently three years ago the Sincerity Ace, a smiliar 650 foot cargo ship dropped a bunch of Nissans in the Pacific.  Its pretty sickening to consider the damage this will cause to the coral near the Azores.  Maria Gallucci just did a great TED Talk about Green Ammonia, a 100% renewable and carbon free fuel that could eliminate pollution from Global shipping. Continue reading

Abandoned at the end of the world, the wreck of the Lord Lonsdale

Abandoned at the end of the world, the wreck of the Lord Lonsdale
The ship was built around the turn of the century and put in a good 10 years of work.  Its final journey departed Germany for Mexico.  While heading to pass through the Straight of Magellan, the ship caught fire at Stanley Harbor in the Falkland Islands.  In an effort to quench the fire, they sank the ship.  After the fire, the steel hull of the ship was sold and was meant to be towed Puerto Natales, but only made it as far as Punta Arenas where it is today. Continue reading

Once the SS Speke, now a rusty wreck

Once the SS Speke, now a rusty wreck
THE SS Speke was said to be one of the largest three masted sailing ships ever built with yard lines 32 meters in length.   The third captain at her helm, Captain Tilston sailed her from Los Angeles to Newcastle in 1904.  They traversed the South Pacific with a load of coal from Peru to Australia and headed up to Geelong with a load of wheat.  They battered headwinds for days along the Victorian coast.  Smoke from a bushfire obscured the coastline and the captain mistook his surroundings and set a course that landed them on a reef in Kitty Miller Bay in Phillips Island Continue reading

The HMS Terror

The HMS Terror

Man proposes God disposes.  The HMS Terror a never ending tale of horror.  This story has it all.  In its first incarnation she ferried Brittish troops during the revolutionary war and was in the harbor when the Star Spangled Banner was composed.  From there she joined in the pursuit to find the northwest passage in the Arctic where it became the poster child of all things shipwreck.  Mysterious sinking, check, cannibalism check, beautiful preserved artifacts like China and journals, check.  This painting by Edwin Landseer.  It hangs in the Royal Holloway, University of London and has haunted students since the 1920’s.  Associated with failure, the painting is ceremoniously covered during all exams.

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Lost in Sea in 1963

Lost in Sea in 1963
The US Revenue Cutter Bear was built in Scotland in 1874 and shortly after purchased by the US Treasury Department.  The Bear's first notoriety came from successfully rescuing the few survivors of the Greely Expedition.  Its most famous Captain was the first US Coastguard Captain of African American descent, Hell Roaring Mike Healy.  Under Healy the Bear traversed miles of cold, performing rescue missions, escorting whaleships, bringing medicine to Alaskans during the Spanish flu epidemic... The ship served in both world wars, served as a museum, was used as a movie set and was heading to Philadelphia to become a floating restaurant when it sank off Sable Island...maybe it was just tired from it's nearly 90 years of service...A record for a wooden ship.  The wreck of the bear was discovered in October 2021. Continue reading

The G A Kohler, Outerbanks, NC 1933

The G A Kohler, Outerbanks, NC 1933
Off of Cape Hatteras lies the treacherous diamond shoals, and the cold Labrador stream colliding with the gulf stream like raging rivers clashing in the sea.  The resulting graveyard of the Atlantic holds many skeletons of ships.  The GA Koehler went down in a hurricane in 1933, her crew was safely unloaded.  She was burned and scrapped for iron in WW2. Continue reading