Coast Guard supports artifact recovery

Posted: Monday, July 14, 2008

HOMER - The Coast Guard cutter Hickory will support the recovery efforts today of 140-year-old historical artifacts from the USS Torrent.

The artifacts were discovered near Port Graham in 2007.

They include a Mountain Howitzer, several portals, a copper toilet and other miscellaneous items. The items will be displayed at the Pratt Museum in Homer.

Dave McMahon, from the Alaska State Archeologist and Historic Press Office, Story Swet, from the Government Services Agency, Steve Lloyd, the diver who discovered the wreck, and other local officials will be aboard the CGC Hickory.

The USS Torrent was used to transport troops to Alaska shortly after the territory was purchased from Russia. It was sailing through Cook Inlet in 1868 when it struck a rock in the vicinity of Port Graham. All personnel aboard the Torrent made it safely ashore in the vicinity of Coal Cove and months later were rescued by another passing ship.

The exact location of the Torrent was a mystery until the summer of 2007, when Steve Lloyd discovered the wreck near Port Graham.

The Coast Guard Cutter Hickory is a 225-foot Sea-Going Bouy Tender, homeported in Homer.

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