Georges Valentine (shipwreck)

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Career (UK)
Name: Cape Clear
Owner: S. Myers & Co., Liverpool
Port of registry: Liverpool
Route: UK to Australia
Builder: Bowdler, Chaffer & Co., Liverpool, England
Launched: 1869
In service: 1870
Out of service: 1889
Fate: Sold, 1889
Career (France)
Name: Georges Valentine
In service: 1889
Out of service: 1895
Status: Sold, 1895
Career (Italy)
Name: Georges Valentine
Owner: Mortolo & Simonetti, Genoa
In service: 1895
Homeport: Camogli
Fate: Wrecked, 16 October 1904
General characteristics [1]
Tonnage: 882 GRT
Length: 189 ft 7 in (57.79 m)
Beam: 31 ft 2 in (9.50 m)
Depth: 20 ft 5 in (6.22 m)
Georges Valentine Shipwreck Site
Hutchinson Island FL Georges Valentine wreck plaque02.jpg
Georges Valentine (shipwreck) is located in Florida
Georges Valentine (shipwreck)
Location Hutchinson Island, Florida, Florida USA
Coordinates 27°11′55.8″N 80°9′49.8″W / 27.198833°N 80.163833°W / 27.198833; -80.163833Coordinates: 27°11′55.8″N 80°9′49.8″W / 27.198833°N 80.163833°W / 27.198833; -80.163833
Built 1869
Governing body Florida Department of Environmental Protection
NRHP Reference # 06000619[2]
FUAP # 11
Significant dates
Added to NRHP July 19, 2006[2]
Designated FUAP 2006[3]

The Georges Valentine Shipwreck Site is the site of the historic shipwreck of an Italian barkentine[3] off the coast of Hutchinson Island in Martin County, Florida, with the nearest landmark being the House of Refuge at Gilbert's Bar.

The iron-hulled barque was built in Liverpool, England in 1869 by Bowdler Chaffer & Company for S. Meyers & Company. Originally christened Cape Clear with Lloyd's of London in 1870, she started her career as a screw steamboat with auxiliary sail carrying passengers on the Australia - Liverpool run. She was purchased by a French firm based in Bordeaux in 1889, re-christened Georges Valentine and turned into a sailing bark by being stripped of all steam machinery except the boiler. Rigged as a three-masted barkentine, she was then sold to a firm based in Dunkirk, northern France. In 1895, she was sold to Mortolo & Simonetti, based in Genoa, Italy. She was based in Camogli, northern Italy and transported lumber regularly from Pensacola, Florida to South America.

In October 1904, the Georges Valentine, with a crew of twelve men commanded by Captain Prospero Mortolo, sailed with a load of milled mahogany from Pensacola bound for Buenos Aires. On October 13, 1904 the ship sighted Havana, Cuba, but she later hit a storm in the Florida Straits and was blown up the Atlantic coast of Florida where on October 16, 1904, despite her crew's attempts to keep her in deeper water, she ran aground in shallow water and wrecked off Hutchinson Island near Gilbert's Bar. Five crew members perished. Their bodies were not recovered. The seven survivors found refuge at the House of Refuge just 100 yards from the wreck site, where the House of Refuge's keeper, Captain William E. Rea, rendered aid to them.[3][4]

On July 19, 2006, the Georges Valentine Shipwreck Site was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.[2] On October 16, 2006, it became the eleventh Florida Underwater Archaeological Preserve.[3][5]

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External links[edit]

Media related to Georges Valentine (shipwreck) at Wikimedia Commons