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A shipwreck, believed to be the US Revenue Cutter Bear, was discovered Thursday by the Coast Guard. In 1963, a historic ship sank about 260 miles east of Boston as it was being towed to Philadelphia, where it was intended to become a floating restaurant.
Officials from the Coast Guard and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration had a conference about expert teams searching the ship for evidence in August. This led to the conclusion that it is indeed the Bear.
Built in 1874, the ship was bought by the United States in 1884 to help search for the ill during an arctic expedition. This ship served in both World Wars and even had a Black captain commanding it, patrolling the Arctic for over four decades, performing search and rescue operations, recording geological and astronomical information, escorting whaling ships, and conducting the census of people and vessels.
A Coast Guard Atlantic official historian, William Theisen, says the Bear has completed some dangerous yet successful rescues since its initial creation. “When Native Americans needed food, Bear brought it. When stranded whalers needed rescue, Bear saved them.”
More than a century ago, Alaskans contracted the disease during the Spanish flu pandemic, and the ship brought doctors and medicine to the sick.
As the Coast Guard historian put it, “Bear has served in the Ocean with various capacities for nearly 90 years, an amazing feat for a wooden ship.”
Written by Daylontie Jasper
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware
CBS NEWS: Wreck of legendary military ship found in Atlantic, ending “decades-long mystery”
Feature Image Courtesy of Earl Long’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of C. Holmes’s Flickr Page- Creative Commons License