Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bark TRAJAN Discovered

Sailing Bark Trajan
The Sinking and Discovery of A 19th Century Lime Carrier
On December 5th 2008 the discovery and identification of the shipwreck Trajan in Newport Harbor,Rhode Island was the culmination of luck, perseverance and research by Divers/Maritime Historians John Stanford and Mark Munro.
The Trajan was a Bark rigged sailing vessel and took her name from the Roman Emperor Trajan. She was built in 1856 at the yard of H. Merrian in Rockland Maine, had a length of 125’, a beam of 29’ 6” and a draft of 13’. From 1856 to 1864 she made several passages between New York, Cuba, and England. By 1867 she was engaged in the Rockland Lime Trade under the command of Captain W. Sleeper. At the time of the Trajan’s loss, August 17, 1867, she was on a voyage from Rockland Maine to New Orleans carrying a cargo of lime. Lime was a dangerous cargo: if it got wet, a chemical reaction created heat and sometimes caused the schooner to catch fire. This was to be Trajan’s undoing.

Though no photos of the Trajan are known to exist, she was similar to this 1860s freight bark. For the rest of the story Click Here.

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