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"Holy Grail" of shipwrecks washes ashore on Florida beach



A shipwreck, believed to date from the 18th century, was washed ashore on a Florida beach this week, a local report said.

The 48-foot ship appeared at Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Johns County, on Julie Turner, who made the discovery with her 8-year-old son, told Action News Jax at 8 pm Wednesday.

At first, Turner thought she had found a piece of a pier or fence, but then it clearly became part of a very old ship, she told the station.

"We went and checked it and knew immediately that it was a historical piece of artifact," she said.

The Sheriff's Office of St. Johns County was posted on Facebook "The rubble seems to be part of a ship's hull and is considered quite old."

Marc Anthony, a self-proclaimed treasure hunter who owns an antique shop in St. Augustine, told the station that the wreck seems to date from the 1

8th century.

"To actually see it, survive and come ashore, this is very, very rare," he told the outlet. "This is the holy grail of shipwrecks."

The wooden remains seemed to be encased in copper, as there were still some copper engraving heads visible, said Chuck Meide, marine lighthouse and maritime museum director, Florida Times-Union

Will Dickey / Florida Times-Union [19659010] Researchers plan to use photos of the wreckage to create a 3D model of what the hull looked like, Meide said.

"That's amazing," Meade told the newspaper. "It's a section of a big sailing ship, I'll tell you."

A team of archaeologists examined the wreckage after the discovery, as required by Guana State Park, and will determine its origin and age. [196590000] "Take lots of notes, make drawings, work it out," said Tonya Creamer from the museum to the station. "There are so many details that go into trying to judge the date where it came from."

Will Dickey / Florida Times-Union

The state will decide what to do with the find, Creamer explained] "This is a state-owned land, a state-run beach area, so we just share our knowledge and information, what we are currently documenting with officials and it is up to them what we should do next, "she said.

Late Thursday afternoon, the museum posted on Facebook that it was "preparing to bring it up the beach and out of harm's way."

"We're running against the tide," it said later in a post. "Force Plan B if the machine does not come to us in time, can we save it ?!"


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