Searching for the Beeswax Shipwreck with anthropologist Scott Williams

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Date(s) - July 14, 2018
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Seaside Public Library


One of the most popular mysteries of the Oregon Coast has been the identification of the “Beeswax Wreck” at Nehalem Beach, in Tillamook County. Identified over time by various researchers as either a Chinese or Japanese junk, a Spanish galleon, a Portuguese trader, or a lost English or Dutch pirate vessel, we have been able to determine that the ship was in fact a Spanish Galleon of the Manila Trade. Nehalem Indian oral histories and the journals of the earliest traders in the area indicate that the galleon wrecked prior to European settlement and indeed most European exploration of the Pacific Northwest. The site has been buried for the last 100 years. However, blocks of beeswax are occasionally found by beachcombers in the sand dunes adjacent to the site.