It appeared in the depths of the ocean. It has been there for over a hundred years. And it holds a treasure inside. The ship sunk in World War I was found by a professional diver.
Dominic Robinson went into the sea off Cornwall (England) with a Darkstar team. There, he stumbled upon the SS Libourne, believed to have sunk in 1918. The freighter was attacked by Hellmuth von Rockteschell, a German naval officer, during the First World War. The then captain of the ship ordered the vessel set on fire and destroyed. It was carrying 425 pounds worth of pickles and 10,000 bottles of liquor.
“There were many bottles visible in the wreck. But we also assume there were many more under the sand and other debris,” Dominic said. “The wreck is a long way offshore. Getting to it depended on the good weather we were lucky enough to have.”
“I love being able to photograph shipwrecks that almost no one else gets to see. It’s a real privilege and makes all the effort worthwhile,” the diver added. He is now seeking to obtain permission to recover the alcohol bottles. They have been uniquely preserved after a century at sea.
However, the 2001 UNESCO convention states that there is protection of underwater heritage. Therefore, it is difficult for them to obtain such a permit. Even if they do, it is believed that very little of the salvaged cargo will be consumable. The corks corrode with seawater and allow water and air to enter the bottles.
Remnants of war
World War I was a wartime confrontation centered in Europe that began on July 28, 1914. It ended on November 11, 1918, when Germany accepted the terms of the armistice. It was called “world-wide” because all the great powers were involved.
The assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand (June 28, 1914) was the main trigger of the conflict. The ship sunk in World War I and found now is just another reminder of the barbarism.