Friday, May 15, 2015

5/15/15 Report - Wreck of the Encarnation. 1800s Schooner Shipwreck. The Mystery Wreck. Granel.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

While looking for pirate ships near Panama divers found something unique in less than 40 feet of water - a seventeenth century ship full of cargo.

The above photo shows wooden crates were still packed in the ship's hull.  Half of the hull and crates had been buried and were remarkably preserved.

The ship has been identified as the Encarnacion, part of the Tierra Firme fleet. It sank during a storm in 1681. 

Here is the link for the entire National Geographic article.


A beachgoer discovered the ribs of a shipwreck sticking out of the sand at low tide on a Massachusetts beach.  That wreck is thought to be a schooner that carried cargo during the 1800s.

The state archaeologist said, The lesson I have learned — and it took me many years to learn — is as soon as you get the call, get out there. Because chances are if you don’t, the wreckage will get covered up.

The wreck, being about 100 feet long and 30 feet wide, from the method of construction, including wood fasteners, appeared to be a two or three-masted schooner.

Here is the link.


I found an article in the 2006 International Journal of Nautical Archaeology (35:2) on the so-called Mystery wreck that lies off Marathon Florida.  You might find it interesting.

I found the article when researching granel.  Granel is a type of concrete used as ballast.  It was used on the Atocha, for example.

Granel was poured over beams and between beams on the bottom of the ship.

I haven't found any pictures of granel but think I have seen pieces of it along the Treasure Coast at different times.

Below is a picture of one of the several pieces that I've seen.

I wonder if any of you can tell me if this is indeed granel or another type of concrete.  From what I've read, the granel from the Atocha is not the color of this concrete found on Treasure Coast beaches.

Concretion Found on Wreck Beach.

Anybody know?


No significant change in beach detecting conditions along the Treasure Coast.  The surf is a touch higher and we will have a nice negative tide today.

Happy hunting,