Anchors Away By Kristina Fricker June 9, 2016


Possible anchor from the Pillar Dollar site (photo from Galleon Alley: The 1733 Spanish Treasure Fleet by Bob "Frogfoot" Weller, 2001).

Hello again from Biscayne Bay... well actually Lower Matecumbe Key.

After spending several days isolated and cut off from our beloved shipwreck because of the weather, the team was finally able to go out again today! Sadly, I was not on the dive team (cue the tragic violin music). Instead, today Annie, Allyson, Dr. McKinnon, and I left Biscayne Bay completely and drove over to Lower Matecumbe Key. We were following up on a lead about an anchor that was possibly poached from the Pillar Dollar site.

Based on the old photographs, we thought the anchor was around 12ft tall. However, when we arrived, we were surprised that it was closer to 15 or 16ft. We quickly set about recording the measurements we needed to make a scaled drawing later. I even got to put some of my terrestrial excavation skills to use... albeit I used my flip-flop instead of a trowel. A small portion of the anchor (the crown) was partially buried so I spent several minutes digging and moving some mulch around with my shoe and subsequently reburying the section.

After we finished up our mapping and I was sufficiently covered in dirt, we went next door to the Cuban restaurant for lunch. I wasnít able to dive today, but I did get to eat at an actual restaurant which was infinitely tastier than everyone elseís lunch, so thereís that.


Left image: Allyson Ropp measuring the possible Pillar Dollar anchor on Lower Matacumbe Key (photo by J. McKinnon 2016). Right image: Anchor recording team. Left to right: Kristina Fricker, Annie Wright, and Allyson Ropp (photo by J. McKinnon 2016).

Once back on our island, Annie and I set about creating a scaled line drawing of our anchor. I want to make a nice illustration of the anchor but as transporting paper with wet ink is... difficult, Iíll probably wait till I get back to Greenville.


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