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June 8, 2019

USS Annie

shipwrecks are a terrible thing
those that survive grow up fast if their young boys at the time…
perhaps there is nothing more terrible than a shipwreck with a total loss of life…
the ship known as the USS Annie was one such ship..
it was a schooner that had been captured by the Union Navy during the American Civil War…
it was refurbished and then used by the Union Navy
in support of the Union Navy blockade of Confederate waterways…
the blockade was setup to prevent any British or French ships from delivering goods
the Confederacy was in desperate straits
to prevent the Confederacy from being able to ship supplies via water…
i.e. any cotton that could be sent to England for money that could be used in the war effort…
the boat was actually originally called the Anna and it was captured
when it tried to slip through the Union blockade and navigate up the Suwannee River…
how I love you, how I love you my dear old Suwannee...still remember that song from school...
the boat was carrying what has been described as a ‘wide variety of cargo’
most from the Bahamas...the ship had suffered severe damage and the Anna was
the Union Navy purchased the remains of the vessel on March 11th of 1863
...the idea was to refit it and use it for service in blockading…
by the first of April in the same year, it began active service
the ship was stationed at Boca Grande...however, for unknown reasons
the name of the vessel was listed as Annie and it remained that way
throughout its naval service…

all throughout the rest of 1864, Annie continued to serve
in the blockade of Florida's Gulf Coast...on December 30th, it departed Key West
sailing for Charlotte Harbor which is located on the west coast of Florida
...that’s when the mystery begins...for in January of 1865, a mere two weeks
after the ship left Key West, its hulk was found laying on the bottom
in about six fathoms (that’s about 36 feet of water for you non-seamen)
...the vessel was a total wreck, apparently the victim of some kind of explosion
no trace of the crew was ever found...some were probably blown apart in the explosion

if there were any survivors they would have had to contend with the sharks that would have come soon after