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Storms uncovers portion of shipwreck on Cape Cod

November 20, 2010

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ORLEANS, Mass.—A recent storm that pounded a Cape Cod beach has uncovered a portion of a wooden shipwreck.

About 50 feet of timbers were sticking less than a foot out of the sand on Nauset Beach in Orleans, which lost up to 15 feet of sand in a multi-day storm about a week ago.

The Cape Cod Times reported Saturday that the wreck appears to be on its side, and wooden pins and brass rivets are fastening planks to the ship's ribs.

The public isn't allowed to take any portion of such wrecks, but unless it's deemed to have historic value, officials won't touch it, either.

More than 3,500 ships sank in Cape waters between 1850 and 1980. Experts say it's often difficult to identify a ship if its name isn't seen somewhere on the wreck.