A lost ship was discovered off the coast of Maine in 2018, the ship had been lost at sea in 1769 during a severe thunderstorm. A powerful storm revealed the site of the shipwreck. Locals had known that there was a ship buried on the beach, but it was a mystery where the ship had originally come from. The ship has been revealed to have been a British sloop that had been originally built in 1754. This makes the ship older than the United States and to have been sailing during the period of time when the United States were still colonies of Great Britain. Records show the sloop named the Defiance was sailing from Salem, Massachusetts to Portland, Maine before she wrecked at York Beach. The ship was carrying a cargo of pork, flour, and English goods when she and her crew of four encountered a fierce storm. They attempted to ride out the storm at anchor but because of the weather were forced to cut the anchor ropes which led them to be pushed onto the shore where the ship was wrecked. The ship was a total loss, but the entire crew survived the wreck.
Questions remained after the ship was uncovered in 2018 about its origin and its age. Samples taken from the ship’s timbers were compared with a New England timber-felling index, which showed that the timbers were felled approximately in 1753. This ship and other similar wrecks can provide a wealth of data to both scientists and historians. They can help to provide information about climate variations in the region by looking at the changes in the rings of the trees. Based on the data obtained from the wreck of the Defiance, scientists were able to gain valuable information on a variety of tree species from the early 1600s to the 1700s.
Although it is believed that this ship is the Defiance, more work must be done to confirm the ship’s identity. Research has also shown that a ship with the same name was built in Massachusetts in 1754, this lines up well with a felling date of the timbers in 1753. This is because it is assumed that the timbers would have been used to build the ship shortly after the felling took place. Discoveries similar to this one are very rare, because of the ship being buried off the coast of Maine for so long it has become a local legend. A drone captured footage of the ship’s unearthing and is available on YouTube. According to the description attached to the video, this was not the first time the shipwreck has been unearthed. Previous dates for it being uncovered include 1958, 2003, and 2017.