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Massachusetts Marine Investigator, Barry Clifford, said in a press release today that he is confident that a sunken ship found off of the coast of Haiti is that of the long-lost Santa Maria, the flagship of a small fleet of ships commanded by Christopher Columbus as he made landfall in the New World.
Clifford, who found fame salvaging pirate ships on Cape Cod and Madagascar, initially discovered the wreck in 2003 but was unable to identify the ship. But, later discoveries by archaeologists, who found Columbus’s fort on the island, entries in Columbus’s own diary, as well as cannon research, led Clifford back to the shipwreck to try to confirm his beliefs.
The shipwreck is laying in the position described by Columbus and is in the correct location and underwater terrain. Further, the stones used for ballast in the ship are of the same type found in Spain where the ship was built.
Columbus sailed to America looking for a shorter route to the Far East. In December of that year, the Santa Maria ran aground off of Haiti’s coast. Some of the materials from the ship were used to build a garrison on the island, Columbus sailed back to Spain on his two remaining ships the very next month.
If in fact the wreckage is the remains of the Santa Maria, it will be one of the most significant underwater finds ever made, that ship is one of three that changed the history of the world.
© 2014, ↑ Alaska Native News
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