March 29 (UPI) — A mother and son taking a walk on a Florida beach made an unusual and fascinating discovery — a partial hull from an apparent 18th century shipwreck.
Julia Turner said she and her son were walking along the shore in Ponte Vedra Beach, near the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, when they came across the 47-1/2-foot piece of wreckage.
“We were going to look for conch shells and shark teeth, and we find a shipwreck,” Turner told WJXT-TV. “Pretty special.”
Chuck Meide, an archaeologist with the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, brought a team of researchers to the scene Thursday to study the hull, which he said is well preserved and bears Roman numeral markings on the wood.
Researchers said they aren’t being allowed to move the wreckage because it is the property of the state of Florida. They said they trying to study the wreckage as much as possible and are considering attempting to create a 3D model from their photos before it is reclaimed by the sea.