Identification of the "Cape Hatteras Mystery Wreck"

Author(s): Roger Warden

Year: 2016


Roughly a mile-and-a-half from Diamond Shoals Light Tower off North Carolina's Outer Banks lie the broken remains of an unidentified ship resting on the sand at a depth of 150 feet.  For two years, members of the Battle of the Atlantic Research and Expedition Group have researched this vessel, both in the archives and in the water.  Is it, as theorized, the wreck of the Panamanian tanker Olympic, possibly sunk in early 1942 by U-66 during the opening phase of Operation Drumbeat, the German U-boat offensive on the US East Coast?  Or is this wreck the re-flagged Dutch tanker SS Merak, which was sunk in 1918 by the German submarine U-140 in the little-known World War I U-boat offensive on the US East Coast?  A third possibility is that these are the remains of a steamship that simply wrecked near the Diamond Shoals in peacetime.  This paper will outline the results of the Group’s investigation of the Mystery Wreck.

Cite this Record

Identification of the "Cape Hatteras Mystery Wreck". Roger Warden. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434356)


Temporal Keywords
20th Century

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 552