A hurricane helped uncover a secret hidden for centuries


NYT: the remains of a ship that crashed over a century ago were found on a Florida beach

Hurricanes that hit Florida this fall helped uncover a “relic” of the maritime past – the remains of a wrecked ship that had remained hidden under the sands for more than a century, The New York Times writes.

“A ‘strange object’ made of wood and metal about 24 meters long was discovered last month on a beach in Daytona Beach, Florida, after Hurricanes Jan and Nicole hit the state in the fall. Immediately there were numerous theories as to what it could be: some speculated it was the remains of a grandstand set up decades ago for NASCAR racing, others thought it was the wreckage of an old pier.

“The mystery was solved by a team of researchers who, after excavating the site, concluded that it was the remains of a 19th-century private merchant ship. “It’s a relic of a bygone era that we rarely get a glimpse of,” said archaeologist Chuck Made.

The excavation uncovered iron bolts, nails and the ship’s fasteners. “We think it’s probably the wreckage of a ship from the 1800s and it’s probably a merchant ship,” Made noted. Researchers took 22 wood samples to try to learn more about the find.

As the publication notes, removing the wreck from the sand is costly due to conservation concerns, so it will stay where it is, and souvenir hunters will be “deterred” by Florida’s strict laws.

“Right now, the wreckage is being hidden again (the sand is washing up with the tides. – Ed. note). They are in wet sand and have been buried for more than a hundred years. As long as they remain wet and out of the light, they will persist almost forever,” Meide stressed.

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