Antonio López (shipwreck)

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SS Antonio López Shipwreck Site and Remains
PRAntonioLopez1.jpg
Antonio López (shipwreck) is located in Puerto Rico
Antonio López (shipwreck)
Nearest city Dorado, Puerto Rico
Coordinates 18°28′48″N 66°13′50″W / 18.48000°N 66.23056°W / 18.48000; -66.23056Coordinates: 18°28′48″N 66°13′50″W / 18.48000°N 66.23056°W / 18.48000; -66.23056
Built 1881
Architect López y López, Antonio; Denny, Peter
NRHP Reference # 93001593
Significant dates
Added to NRHP February 9, 1994[1]
Designated NHL December 9, 1997[2]
The burned out hulk of the SS Antonio Lopez

The Antonio López was a historic vessel of the Spanish merchant marine. When built in 1881–82, she was the first Spanish-built steel merchant vessel with a complete electrical lighting system. She was also one of the most important Spanish blockade-runners during the American blockade of (then-Spanish) Puerto Rico during the Spanish–American War, its crew delivering a supply of military materials critical to the island's defense after the ship was grounded in June 1898 under fire from the Americans. The shipwreck is the only known Spanish wreck in American waters from the conflict.[3] Its wreck site, in 1,700 feet (520 m) of water off Dorado, Puerto Rico, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1997.

History[edit]

The Antonio López was a transoceanic steamer belonging to the Compañía Transatlántica Española named after its founder Antonio López y López. The ship was bound for San Juan from Cádiz, Spain during the days of the 1898 Spanish–American War.

On June 28, 1898, two American cruisers fought with a squadron of Spanish warships. This squadron consisted of one cruiser, two gunboats and the Antonio López, which had a cargo of military supplies. She was pursued by USS Yosemite and ran aground at Ensenada Honda with its cargo.[4]

Claudio López Bru (1853–1925), Antonio López y López' son, then owner and president of the company, sent a telegram to the ship's captain saying:

Es preciso que haga usted llegar el cargamento a Puerto Rico aunque se pierda el barco. (You must get your cargo to Puerto Rico, even if the ship were lost)

Capt. Ramón Acha Caamaño was placed in charge of retrieving the ship's cargo. The men under his command quickly removed as much of the stranded ship's cargo as possible. The desperate efforts proved fruitful, and nearly the entire cargo was salvaged from the hulk. Only some minor articles and one cannon that had fallen overboard during salvage attempts were lost.[2][4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ a b "ANTONIO LOPEZ (Shipwreck)". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-06-28. 
  3. ^ "NHL nomination for Antonio Lopez (shipwreck)". National Park Service. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  4. ^ a b Berta Pensado, El Marqués de Comillas (1954)