オレゴン州 マニラガレオン船

17世紀に太平洋横断航路を切り開いたガレオン船のひとつがオレゴン州に沈没したことがあったそうです。当時のアジアからの遺物をたくさん積ん出いたことでしょう。19世紀の記録ではこの沈没船に積まれていた蜜ろうと残っていた船財を使ったとあります。言い伝えでは嵐により船が二つにわれ軽かった船首が岸に流れ着き、大砲を積んでいた船尾は沈んだと言われています。

はっきりした記録や伝承などが伝えられており現在これらの史実を研究中です。また、同時に沈没地点と見られる海域で時期探査をおこない沈没船と思われる反応が5箇所ほどあったそうです。

これらが探している沈没船か、もしくは別の沈没船かまだ分かりませんが引き続き調査を行っていくそうです。

The Spanish galleon rode low in the water as it sailed out of Manila Bay 300 years ago on an arduous voyage to Acapulco. But the trading ship, heavy with Chinese porcelain and prized Philippine beeswax for candles, never made it to Mexico.

Perhaps blown off course by a storm, the galleon wrecked on the Oregon shore near the mouth of Nehalem Bay. Any survivors might have been the first Europeans to make contact with Native Americans in the Northwest.

In the years that followed, Native Americans and 19th-century settlers made use of the shattered ship’s teak timbers and abundant beeswax. Folklore included accounts about treasure from the ship being buried on nearby Neahkahnie Mountain.

As the legend grew, so did the questions. What ship was it and when did it sink? Were there survivors? What impact did it have on the native people? Are there remnants buried under the dunes or just offshore on the ocean floor?

Last week, a research team began the quest for answers with the first extensive archaeological study of the “Beeswax Ship” wreck site at Nehalem Bay State Park.

“This is a well-known wreck that has received a lot of attention in the past 150 years,” said Scott Williams, an archaeologist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Olympia who is leading the project in his spare time. “But there are a lot of differing accounts and opinions about the shipwreck, so our goal is to separate fact from legend.”

Finding the wreck is challenging as the shoreline and dunes have continually changed. Chunks of beeswax are found occasionally on the beaches — a surfer found three pieces two years ago — but the last sighting of large pieces of the ship onshore was 80 years ago. The last reported view of offshore pieces was more than 100 years ago.

Williams said the galleon is believed to have broken into two parts, with the upper half swept by storms onto the beach. The heavier lower half, which would have carried cannons, sank.

Researchers began the hunt last week with sophisticated sensing instruments.

Sheldon Breiner, a geophysicist from Menlo Park, Calif., who has participated in other archaeological projects, used a magnetometer a device that detects irregularities in subsurface magnetic fields. He found five potential sites for the ship offshore, but none on the beach.

All five of the magnetic anomalies on the seafloor appear to be ships,” Breiner said. “One of the anomalies may be cannon from the galleon, which would easily be detected with this device. The data will require more analysis, but I am very excited about what we found.”

Williams said the team hopes to investigate the offshore sites later this summer with divers or with remote-controlled underwater cameras.

In another study last week, Curt Peterson, a geology professor and tsunami expert at Portland State University, used ground-penetrating radar to look below the park’s surface. Peterson and his colleagues are looking for signs of the magnitude 9 earthquake and tsunami that struck the coast in January 1700.

引用元:http://www.oregonlive.com/science/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/science/1179876326275450.xml&coll=7

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