Since moving here in the Keys I find myself wanting to know more about the Keys, it’s all such a mystery to me living near the ocean and life in the Keys, sometimes I wonder how anyone survived here before air conditioners, but then when the temperature drops below 72 degrees, I’m starting to fra, fra, freeze, knowing right now in upstate NY it’s below freezing with the wind temperature and I think, okay my blood is thinning, I’m getting used to the heat, my guess is without air, you learn to live with it. I’m amazed that construction workers and landscapers survive working in the summer outside down here, and I give them much respect. But I digress, on to the SHIPWRECKS.
Shipwreck locations found on this web site were obtained from The Office of Coast Survey’s Automated Wreck and Obstruction Information System (AWOIS). Information on each shipwreck includes latitude and longitude along with a brief history, descriptive details, and up to 10 nearby wrecks and obstructions. About 750 named shipwrecks spanning the entire Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic waters surrounding Florida are listed here and over 4700 additional features are included in the data file. AWOSI is a cool site if you like interactive maps to find shipwrecks and other interesting finds in the ocean. Great site and informative, highly suggest you click the link to visit
Below is information I found from NOAA.gov site, there is a plethora of information on their site, I highly recommend visiting https://floridakeys.noaa.gov/shipwrecktrail/welcome.html
Within Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary lies a trail of historic shipwrecks, scattered along the coral reefs and buried in the sandy shallows a few miles off shore. The nine ships along this Shipwreck Trail have many tales to tell, from the stories of individuals who came before us to why they were here and their difficulties in navigating these waters.
Visitors are encouraged to explore the sites along the trail. An underwater guide is available for each site on the Shipwreck Trail, providing the shipwreck and mooring buoy positions, history, a site map, and information about marine life divers might encounter. Conditions on the Shipwreck Trail sites vary from easy dives in shallow water to deeper dives of l00 feet or more where swift currents may be encountered. Some of the deeper sites require mooring to submerged buoys.
Please help protect the sites on the Shipwreck Trail, and all the sanctuary’s maritime heritage resources, so that they may be enjoyed by future generations. When diving, remember to control your buoyancy, since shipwreck structures can be as fragile as the marine life they support. Disturbance and removal of artifacts is prohibited. It’s best to leave these pieces of history where they are, for other divers to enjoy and for historians to document.
In 20 feet of water, four miles south-southeast of Duck Key, lie the remains of a three-masted iron-rigged and reinforced wooden-hull bark. The major features of this ship, locally known as the Conrad and believed to be the Adelaide Baker, are scattered over a square quarter-mile area. More…
The Amesbury, locally known as Alexander’s Wreck, was built as a U.S. Naval destroyer escort in 1943 and was later converted to a high-speed transport vessel. While the vessel was being towed to deep water to be sunk as an artificial reef, it grounded and broke up in a storm before it could be refloated. More…
The Benwood was built in England in 1910 and sunk in 1942 when it collided with another ship. She lies between French Reef and Dixie Shoals on the bottom of a low profile reef and sand, in depths ranging from 25 to 45 feet. More…
In 25 feet of water east of Key Largo, the remains of the City of Washington lie on Elbow Reef. On July 10, 1917, while being towed by a tug, the City of Washington ran aground and was a total loss within minutes. More…
The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Duane lies upright on a sandy bottom in 120 feet of water one mile south of Molasses Reef off Key Largo. After being decommissioned on August 1, 1985, as the oldest active U.S. military vessel, the Duane was donated to the Keys Association of Dive Operators for use as an artificial reef. More…
The Eagle lies on her starboard side in 110 feet of water three miles northeast of Alligator Reef Light. On the night of December 19, 1985, while waiting to be sunk as an artificial reef next to the Alexander Barge, the Eagle broke from her moorings. More…
Although not confirmed, this shipwreck may be the North America, built in Bath, Maine, in 1833 and lost November 25, 1842, while carrying dry goods and furniture. She lies in 14 feet of water in the sand and grass flats north of Delta Shoals, just east of Sombrero Key Light. More…
The San Pedro, a member of the 1733 Spanish treasure fleet caught by a hurricane in the Straits of Florida, sank in 18 feet of water one mile south of Indian Key. She is the oldest shipwreck on the Shipwreck Trail, with the mystique of a Spanish treasure shipwreck to draw divers and snorkelers alike. More…
The Thunderbolt was intentionally sunk on March 6, 1986, as part of the Florida Keys Artificial Reef Association project. She now lies intact and upright on a sand bottom in 120 feet of water four miles south of Marathon and Key Colony Beach. More…
Four ships have been sunk as artificial reefs within Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary since its designation in 1990; an additional 16 ships were sunk as artificial reefs within waters of the Florida Keys prior to sanctuary inception
Within Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, reefs – natural and artificial – provide habitat for marine life and also attract divers, snorkelers, and fishermen. Artificial reefs within the sanctuary have only been developed after an extensive evaluation and permitting process to ensure that placement of the structures on the seafloor will not be detrimental to sanctuary resources and that the proposed benefits of the artificial reef will be achieved.
Examples of intentionally sunk ships within the sanctuary include the Amesbury, Bibb, Duane, Eagle, Spiegel Grove, and Thunderbolt. Some of these ships are all located along the sanctuary’s Shipwreck Trail, where they serve the same functions in this underwater trail as museums do on land.
Another very well known and popular artificial reef in the sanctuary is the Hoyt S. Vandenberg. Sunk on May 27, 2009, just seven miles south of Key West, the Vandenberg is the largest artificial reef in the sanctuary and the second largest in the world. The shipwreck is now a popular diving destination.
🌺 ALL KEYS RESIDENCE SHOULD BOOKMARK THIS SITE, IT HAS SO MUCH INFORMATION.🌺 I love this site, also if you’re a serious diver and travel, this site is not only for the Keys: https://floridakeys.noaa.gov
I have compiled a few pictures and videos of our shipwrecks in the Keys, ENJOY!
Here are a few links I also found, if you’re interested in further information about shipwrecks in the Keys:
Shipwrecks, like other historical and archaeological sites, are non-renewable resources. Although ships continue to sink, there will never be another wrecked Spanish galleon. Historic shipwrecks that exist today are all we will ever have. They represent limited and unique opportunities to learn about the people who built them and lived, sailed, and wrecked on them. All shipwrecks in Florida waters are protected under the Florida Historical Resources Act. This law protects all archaeological sites on state-owned or controlled lands and submerged bottomlands from unauthorized disturbance, excavation, or removal of artifacts. The wrecks of the 1733 Plate Fleet and other shipwrecks located within the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary also are protected by federal law, just as natural resources are protected, so that future generations may visit, learn from, and enjoy these unique examples of our maritime heritage. Read More: http://www.thiswaytothe.net/tides/shipwrecks.shtml
|Capt. Dan Berg’s Guide to Shipwrecks information|
|Historical and current Florida Keys Shipwreck Information and images for scuba divers and fisherman.|
Check this site out:
In 2008, when I was first elected to the town commission of Sewall’s Point, I was appointed to be on the Treasure Coast Council of Local Governments, and sister entity, Treasure Coast Regional League of Cities. These wonderful organizations consist of elected officials from Indian River, St Lucie, Martin and Okeechobee Counties–counties on, or connected to, the Indian River Lagoon. READ MORE: https://jacquithurlowlippisch.com/tag/treasure-coast-ships-map/
More suggested links I found while searching for Pictures. These are also full of information:
Photographer’s information about the featured Image below, he takes sea pics!
Here is a map of Dive Shops that give Scuba Lessons:
Don’t forget the dry land Shipwreck of the African Queen in Key Largo and to this day you can take a tour on the boat it’s self! Cool Huh? In 1982, late attorney (and Bogart buff) Jim Hendricks, Sr., discovered the vessel languishing in an Ocala, Fla., cow pasture and purchased the piece of movie history for a reported $65,000. An equal amount of funds was invested to get the boat operational and Hendricks began offering visitors rides in 1983 while the vessel was homeported at Key Largo’s Holiday Inn. , if you haven’t read it yet you can do so here: http://blondiepieradio.com/visit-african-queen-boat-key-largo/