The Trojan Shipwreck  Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, & Maine Shipwrecks
Historical and current New England Shipwreck Information and images for scuba divers, fisherman and marine historians.




   Capt. Dan Berg's Wreck Valley Collection   



The iron hulled freighter Trojan was built in Wilmington Delaware in 1888. She was originally built as a coiler and named the Orion. She was 261 feet long had a 38 foot beam and displaced 1786 gross tons. In 1905 she was sold and re-named Trojan.

On January 22, 1906the Trojan was steaming through a dense fog when she was in a collision with the passenger liner Nacoochee. The huge liner had cut a huge hole into the smaller Trojan. As the Trojan filled with water her crew was rescued and brought aboard the Nacoochee.

Today the wreck of the Trojan sits in 100 feet of water on a muddy bottom.

The following article is by Captain Eric Takakjian.

As the end of the dive season draws near, there are certain wrecks that you never feel you have made enough dives on. Maybe it was one last bolt on a porthole, or one more room left unexplored. The freighter Trojan is one such wreck. Her 261 foot iron hull rests upright and largely intact at the entrance to Vineyard Sound in 100fsw.

Built as a coiler for the Boston Towboat Company, she was launched as the Orion at the Harlan and Hollingsworth Shipbuilding Corporation in Wilmington Delaware, in February of1888. An unusual feature of the ship was a towing bit and buffalo rail set upon the stern. Forward of the towing bit was a large covered spool used to store a towing hawser. It is doubtful that the Orion did much towing; due to her size she would have been difficult to handle a tow with. The Orion served the Boston Towboat Company well for seventeen years, carrying coal from Newport News, Virginia to various east and gulf coast ports.

In May of 1905 the ship was sold to the Boston and Philadelphia Steamship Company of Boston, who in July of the same year renamed her the Trojan, The Trojan's new owners decided to enter the ship in general cargo service, and added tween decks in her cargo holds. This increased the ship's cargo capacity, and tonnage from 1786 to2,632.

The Trojan departed Philadelphia in mid January of 1906, bound for Boston. In her cargo holds were severs tons of bronze ingots, 300 cases of medicine bottles and miscellaneous glass and porcelain items. Encountering dense fog upon arriving at the entrance to Vineyard Sound on the 21st of January, Captain Peleg Thatcher decided to anchor his ship and wait for the fog to clear. A short while later the passenger ship Nacoochee, also bound from Philadelphia to Boston, loomed out of the fog on the Trojan's port side. The Nacoochee was traveling to fast to avoid the Trojan and crashed into the Trojans port side just forward of amidships. The Trojan quickly filled with water and sank. Captain Thatcher and his crew of27 men were rescued by the Nacoochee. The Trojan sank so quickly that the crew escaped with nothing more that the clothes on their backs. The captain of the Nacoochee belatedly anchored his ship and waited a day and a half for the fog to clear, before proceeding to Boston.

At a hearing held by the Steamboat Inspectors Office in Providence, Rhode Island, Captain Thatcher was exonerated of all blame in the incident. The Nacoochee's captain was held at fault, and his license was suspended for thirty days.

Although most of their bronze ingots were recovered by local divers in 1972 much still remains. The wreck is easy to navigate on even in the frequently poor visibility. The hull is contiguous and can be followed from bow to stern. Aft of amidships the hull is completely intact, listing to starboard. Most of the fir decking has rotted away exposing the steel deck beams. It is in this part of the wreck that the majority of bottles have been found. They are easily seen amongst the wreckage. By reaching down into the mud in the cargo area just aft of the engine room, a diver can feel the wooden crates that the bottle were shipped in, and find bottles in like-new condition.

The engine and boiler rooms on the Trojan were located amidships. This area is the highest point on the wreck, with the ship's 1,000 hp steam engine rising 20 feet off the bottom. Two large boilers lie side by side just forward of the engine. Numerous brass fittings have been found in this area. In August of 1994 a fully intact and operable brass grease gun was found here, testament to the craftsmanship of another era. Continuing forward towards the bow, the hull is intact with the exception of the area on the port side where the collision occurred. The fir decking has also rotted away on the forward part of the hull, exposing the steel deck beams and various ship's fittings that have fallen down inside the hull. The very bow of the wreck is fairly well broken up.

When diving the Trojan a diver should be prepared for low visibility and moderate currents. Visibility averages ten feet but can be as good as twenty five feet in the spring when the water is colder and draggers are not working in the area. Fishing nets are draped over portions of the wreck, and pose a threat to the unwary diver. Despite the somewhat challenging conditions, the wreck of the Trojan has unlimited possibilities for recovering artifacts. None of the ship's bridge equipment has been recovered, nor has the ships bell! The Trojan is are warding dive that never fails to produce nice artifacts and a good time.



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The complete diver's guide to mastering the skills of shipwreck diving.

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Shipwreck Diving is a complete how to ebook about the sport of wreck diving. This downloadable PDF e-book is packed with information and heavily illustrated with over 80 sensational color photographs. Daniel Berg, a noted wreck diver, instructor and author of ten shipwrecks related books, describes all the basics of wreck diving. Topics include everything from equipment modifications, communication, and wreck penetration to artifact preservation. Dan also tells how to navigate on a wreck and be able to return to the anchor line after the dive. Why some divers find more artifacts and explains how to catch lobsters. Shipwreck Diving also covers such diverse topics as shipwreck research, photography, spear fishing and how to use an underwater metal detector. This exciting book tells all the tricks of the trade that until now have only been learned through years of experience. Shipwreck divers of all caliber will find Shipwreck Diving informative, rewarding and entertaining

Check out Capt. Dan's other shipwreck and Diving eBooks



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Baldwin NY 11510


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