Hurricane Isaac Unearths Mystery Shipwreck -- Again

By Amir Khan on September 4, 2012 11:56 AM EDT

Hurricane Isaac
A storm surge caused by remnants of Hurricane Isaac has once again revealed the remains of a 150-foot sailing ship thought to be named the Rachael. (Photo: Creative Commons)

A storm surge caused by remnants of Hurricane Isaac has once again revealed the remains of a 150-foot sailing ship thought to be named the Rachael. The ship is an early 20th-century schooner that ran aground, and hurricanes unearth the ship when they rip through the area, causing tourists and locals alike to flock to the area with their cameras.

"It's just something that you really have to go see," Adriana Mutan, who went to visit the ship, told Fox10TV. "I mean, I've seen so many pictures...heard so many stories and now I've seen it."

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The schooner ran aground in 1930 while carrying a load of timber, according to the Alabama Historical Society. The commonly-held theory is that the vessel ran into a storm and could not maintain control. Witnesses said the ship was looted and then set on fire.

However, many things about the ship, such as exactly where it was built and where it was going, still remains a mystery.

Hurricanes routinely uncover the ship. The last time came in 2008 when Hurricane Ike ripped through the area.

"We really like history," Dusty Bones, who went to visit the ship, told Fox10TV. "We like going to see things like the Battleship and stuff like that, so to see a piece of this is really interesting."

Billy Berrey, a local who has viewed the ship numerous times, told Fox10TV that he's worried about all of the attention the ship is getting.

"I've always thought it would be kind of cool for them to excavate this thing and move it...preserve what they can and take it to the museum," he said. "The last time it was uncovered, people were pulling things off of it."

However, the Historical Commission looked into that, but found that not only would it be expensive, the land owners would have to foot the bill since it's on private property. The commission said it would help if someone else paid.

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