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Ship’s skeleton emerges on Washington beach

The skeleton of a ship has emerged on Washaway Beach, Washington. It is believed it is the remains of a freighter that broke in two in 1921.

A year ago, this panoply of massive timbers, rusty metal rods and wooden rivets was hidden under 9 feet of tree-covered land one-half mile off Highway 105. Now, some of those trees are strewed over this once-buried treasure jutting out of the receding hillside.

As of Thursday, Vern Coverdale, a retired diesel mechanic in Westport, pegged the exposed wreckage at 125 feet long. “I stepped it off this morning,” he said. “It’s the lower bilge area, the ribs and main keel line, all big stuff.”

But whose treasure is it? Good question.

According to maritime experts and others, the wreckage could be part of the Canadian Exporter, a freighter that broke in two in August 1921 while carrying 3 million board feet of lumber and 200 tons of general cargo, as noted in a contemporary issue of American Shipping magazine. If so, the remains could belong to whoever bought salvage rights, or to a private landowner, or to the state.

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