Coast Guard Supports Recovery of 140 Year Old Artifact

HOMER, Alaska — The Coast Guard Cutter Hickory will support the recovery efforts of 140-year-old historical artifacts from the USS Torrent, Monday, which were discovered near Port Graham in 2007.

These artifacts include a Mountain Howitzer, several portals, a copper toilet, and other miscellaneous items. The items will be transported to the Pratt Museum in Homer, where they will be prominently displayed as artifacts from a unique chapter in the history of Alaska’s statehood.

Dave McMahon, from the Alaska State Archeologist and Historic Press Office, Story Swet, from the Government Services Agency, Steve Lloyd, the diver who discovered the wreck, and other local officials will be aboard the CGC Hickory.

This unique chapter of Alaskan history started shortly after Alaska was purchased from Russia and the federal government began sending U.S. troops to secure the new territory. In support of this mission, the USS Torrent was transporting troops through Cook Inlet in 1868 when it struck a rock in the vicinity of Port Graham. All personnel aboard the Torrent made it safely ashore in the vicinity of Coal Cove and months later were rescued by another passing ship. The exact location of the Torrent was a mystery until the summer of 2007 when Steve Lloyd discovered the wreck near Port Graham.

The Coast Guard Cutter Hickory is a 225-foot Sea-Going Bouy Tender, homeported in Homer.

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