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Shipwrecks of Pensacola
PENSACOLA -- From the 1500s through the 1940s, much of the history of Pensacola can be found below the surface of our coastal waters.
"It's a combination of documents, historical documents and historical research and archives, as well as archaeology on the sites themselves.
So we've ended up knowing quite a lot about our maritime heritage," says Dr. Della Scott-Ireton, Associate Director of the Florida Public Archaeology Network.
She has been uncovering maritime secrets for years, and Thursday night she shared some of those discoveries, including information about the Emanuel Point ships of Tristan DeLuna, and more.
"We talk about the nation's oldest battleship, which is sunk right here off Pensacola dating from the Spanish-American War, the USS Massachusetts. And then, a neat wreck that's a very popular local dive site called the 'Russian Freighter', but it's name is actually San Pablo and it was involved in a top secret operation during WWII that's only recently come to light."
It's all part of the West Florida Public Library's "Explore Pensacola History" lecture series.
Mike Lane from the library says, "What we're trying to do is to go beyond just the names and the monuments and the places that we see and really go into the story behind Pensacola's history."
Dr. Scott-Ireton enjoys making discoveries on the shipwrecks. "Being able to touch some of these things that you know haven't been touched by people in 400 years is an amazing feeling. It's very much a privilege and I hope that I can bring that through these lectures and kind of share my love of history with other people."
The West Florida Public Library will be hosting events like this monthly as part of their historic Pensacola series.