Monday, September 16, 2013

Chicago's Santa Maria Replica

The Santa Maria at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition (

On this date in 1951 The Chicago Tribune ran an article that lamented the slow demise of the replica of the Santa Maria, a replica of Christopher Columbus’ flagship during his voyage to America that was built in Spanish shipyards for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, along with its sister ships, the Niña and the Pinta.  The United State Congress had appropriated the $50,000 necessary for the construction of the three caravels, and on July 7 of 1893 the Santa Maria’s captain, Victor M. Concas, wrote in his log book, “147 days out of Cadiz, dropped anchor in front of the Worlds’ Columbian Exposition.”

The ship was the centerpiece of the last day of the fair, Columbus Day.  Scrubbed clean and fully crewed, the Santa Maria and her sister ships left their mooring space near what is now La Rabida hospital and moved to a point off the fair’s music hall where they dropped anchor about 500 yards off the beach and lowered small boats.  In the first boat stood an actor portraying Christopher Columbus, sword in one hand and a flag in the other.  The pageant had everything:  monks kneeling in prayer at the base of a cross, natives of San Salvador ducking behind palm trees for cover, native chiefs summoned, and friendly greetings exchanged between native and foreigner.

The three caravels in New York harbor on their way to the 1893 fair in Chicago (wikimedia photo)
The glory didn’t last long, and the ship rapidly faded along with the memory of the great white city of 1893.  The Knights of Columbus hatched a plan to save the ship in 1900, but nothing came of it.  By 1903 The Tribune in an editorial called the ships “useless, deserted, forgotten hulks, victims of wind and storm and the prey of vandals, stripped of their furnishings and appliances, stripped even of all sentiment and associations, melancholy reminders of the festal days of the white city.”

The ship did not go without a fight, though.  In fact, on Columbus Day of 1911 the ships set sail again, reaching Grant Park at 8:30 in the morning as 100,000 “natives” lined the shore from Jackson to Grant Park.  Even as the celebration went on, the Santa Maria struggled.  At one point in the pageant, all of the crew as well as the actors aboard were summoned to the pumps as the ship’s hold began to take on water.

Onlookers at the fair watch the three ships sail into Jackson Park (
In 1913 the ships left Chicago, headed for San Francisco.  One observer remarked, “Their decks are absolutely rotted and their hulls are not much better.  They will go down surely.” The vessels made it as far as Detroit, where a fickle wind damaged both the Santa Maria and the Pinta as they were being towed to a dock.  By 1914 the Niña and the Pinta had made it to Buffalo when the promoter in charge of the move to San Francisco ran out of money and they were returned to Chicago during that summer.  The Santa Maria, ever intrepid sailed on to Westerly, Rhode Island where it was determined she could not make it through the rest of the trip.

Then came the ultimate insult when a New York city lawyer bought the Santa Maria for $940 at an Admiralty Court sale.  A fundraising campaign allowed the ship to return to Chicago, but her arrival was not the same glorious entrance that she made in 1893.  The Tribune wrote in an editorial, “The protection of the caravels entails no more expense than the repair of an occasional golf green or the adjustment of a water plug . . . In spite of the almost sacred character of the relics the park board already has suffered them to be dragged half way over the continent by irresponsible adventurers, to be shown as dime museums and hawked about in the port of strange lands, libeled fro debt and no hand raised to protect them save that of distant folk whose regard for rare sentiment overrode the quibble for the dollars it required to save the Columbian replicas from destruction.”

By the end of 1919 the Santa Maria floated alone at the Jackson Park lagoon.  In 1918 the Pinta, her seams open after 25 years of neglect, sank.  The following year the Niña burned to the water line.  $90,000 was spent at that point to restore the remaining ship, but by July of 1938 The Tribune reported, “[The Santa Maria] has been allowed to rot for lack of paint and the replacement of a timber here and there . . . Her once smartly tarred shrouds of imported hemp are black with age . . . She reeks of bilgewater that slushes about her tons and tons of rock ballast.  She’s a nobody.  But she doesn’t complain.  Only when the wind is in a certain quarter in the east and the swells drive into the lagoon form the lake does she teeter a bit at her moorings.”

The three Spanish ships in Jackson Park harbor (chuckman's collection)
There was another flurry of activity in 1946 aimed at restoring the caravel, but the news was not encouraging.  James A. Regan, Sr., head of the Calumet ship yards, the place where the 1920 restoration of the Santa Maria was carried out, said, “The ship is much worse off now than in 1920.  For the first rebuilding we salvaged only the keel and the metal work.  It is doubtful that even the keel is usable now.”  Many began to ask the question, “What do you do with the replica of a ship when almost none of the materials that make up the replica are usable?”  And the folks at the Jackson Park Yacht Club were beginning to complain about the hulk that was making navigation in the harbor difficult.

By 1951  the Santa Maria was broken at the keel and would not last another year.  In 1952 a crane with a clam shell attachment was brought in on a barge, and it didn’t take long for the Santa Maria to end up as rotten kindling to be carted away and dumped.

The great fair of 1893 was an event so important that it sits as one of the four stars on the Chicago flag; it was an event, after all, that was named in honor of the captain who commanded the three ships that sailed into the unknown seas in 1492.  60 years after the triumphant entrance of the three replica ships into Chicago waters, the memory of the last one sailed over the horizon and into the limitless seas of time.


Kimberly FitzSimons said...

Interesting read. I love that photo of all of the onlookers.

Billthebrown said...

I see the new Fleet of Architectural Tours on the Horizon. Man the Pumps Matey.

Anonymous said...

The astonishing Chicago - a city where they are always
rubbing the lamp, and fetching up the genie, and contriving
and achieving new impossibilities. If you have been interested just click

Unknown said...

Ive always wanted to research this story after seeing images from the Chicago Historical Society. I was hoping they scuttled the ships in Lake Michigan and then would have preserved them for a longer time for divers to visit. Great job on the research.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
swiss replica watches said...

Quickly these people were successful suites filled with international awards as well as patents with regard to timepiece layout in addition to advancement all through timepiece techniques. Ditesheim's new technology don't truly commence with the specific Movado appreciate identify which discount replica Ulysse Nardin watches experts claim means "always within motion" within discount knockoff TAG Heuer watches Esperanto. The specific name wasn't previously adopted till fake IWC watches finally 1905. Until finally present, many from the runs related to Movado wrist watches, such because replica Rado Juro as well as Luno tend to be called in the same vocabulary. An instant consider many of the planet most widely used wrist wrist watches will uncover the iconic Replica Ulysse Nardin watches UK determine. Throughout 1912 the Movado watch was developed, and top quality, by getting an uncommonly advanced movement that's been 'shaped' to complement the curvature of the folks equip.

zion said...

The pageant had everything: monks kneeling in prayer at the base of a cross, natives of San Salvador ducking behind palm trees for cover, native chiefs summoned, and friendly greetings exchanged between native and foreigner.
Investment research outsourcing

Anonymous said...

Don't know how many are aware but the replica Santa Maria was the last reported sighting of the Legendary Lost Columbus maps, James Hunter Campbell(1873-1962)states he saw the fabled map that the Turkish Piri Reis map fragment was based on when the Santa Maria was docked in Toronto on its way to the World’s Columbian Exposition....

Google it guys its a fascinating story worthy of Indiana Jones

Hope you don't mind me posting this

Stan (United Kingdom) said...

Nice article Post, thanks for sharing the important information , very informative and presented. nice How do I get in touch with the owner of this blog? Please contact me. My Name is Roose aana and i can provide My Assignment Help Services For All Collage Students.

Max Willor said...

This is a very nice post. Thanks for sharing with us. Keep it up. We also provide My Assignment Help Australia.

emily rose said...

I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style of blogging. I appreciate your efforts and all the best. I added it to my favorites blog site list and will be checking back soon. Please check out my site as well and let me know what you think.
sg assignment help

Anonymous said...

Wonderful information written or published. I completely read this information and found more idea and also want to share with many reader so I am telling to everyone this is such a great info and also share on your social account just like I shared about phone cleaner for android which work for all new Android mobile and increase mobile speed and storage space apart from check website ITL Phone Cleaner.

john amber said...

Thanks for sharing such a nice piece of information to us. This is very knowledgeable for me. I am John and i am offering Assignment Help to students of Australia and all over the world.

charlos john said...

Very useful info. Hope to see more posts soon!. rolex sea-dweller replica waterproof

AB Assignment Help said...

A high-standard post with all imperative information about assignment help UK services. Looking forward to availing the premium services.

Sophie Grace said...

Wow! Such an amazing and helpful post this is. I really really love it. It's so good and so awesome. I am just amazed. I hope that you continue to do your work like this in the future. ink361

Jessica Pearl said...

I really happy found this website eventually. Really informative and inoperative! Thanks for the post and effort! Please keep sharing more such article. I've really like your blog and inspire me in many ways. We have already set a high standard for Coursework help.

Sarah Smith said...

My name is Sarah Smith and This is a very nice post. Thanks for sharing with us. Keep it up.
For Best myassignmenthelp in UK for 24*7.

David said...

Thank you for this information. I read your blog and I am satisfied with your writing contents. Reading is one of my hobbies. I like to blogs to get such intersting posts. It has a lot of tiny informaion which is really helpful to understand esily. Keep sharing more news. best good morning image for friends.

MobileAppDevelopment said...

I found this is an informative and interesting blog so I think so it is very useful and knowledgeable. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this blog. Visit here: PHP Application development company.

Chris Paul said...

My name is Chris Paul and This is a very nice post, Thanks for Sharing.

Get the Best Of Programming Assignment Help in Australia.

SophiaMiller said...

Get the Programming Assignment Help anytime.

Nino Nurmadi said...

Kursus Teknisi Service HP
Distributor Kuota
Lembaga Kursus Terbaik Indonesia
Service Center HP Indonesian
Service Center iPhone Indonesian
Kursus Teknisi Service HP Bandar LampungBimbel Lampung

jessicajones0220 said...

Best Web and Mobile Application solution provider Locus Rags in India.

jessicajones0220 said...

This is jessica jones, Thanks for Sharing this.

Best Web and Mobile Application solution provider Locus Rags in India.

jessicajones0220 said...

This is jessica jones, Thanks for Sharing this.

network information security assignment help

marcostefan992 said...

This is marco stefan, Thanks for Sharing this.

network information security assignment help

Aparna said...

It is one of the best explanation about this topic and I need many unique details in this topic. Hopefully, I am waiting for your next post...

Tableau Training in Chennai
Tableau Course in Chennai
Advanced Excel Training in Chennai
Corporate Training in Chennai
Embedded System Course Chennai
Linux Training in Chennai
Power BI Training in Chennai
Job Openings in Chennai
Tableau Training in Chennai
Tableau Training in Tambaram
Tableau Training in Adyar

Love said...

Thanks for sharing a good piece of information, nice post

Best Love SMS In Hindi for your partner.

Dan Smith said...

Thanks for posting this info. I just want to let you know that I just check out your site and I find it very interesting and informative. I can't wait to read lots of your posts. CDR Help

Unknown said...

Wow amazing post, it is helpful for students for their assignments . Click below links for more posts like this -
Write My Assignment for Me,
Academic Assignment Help,
Business Communications,
Customer Satisfaction
Environmental Health Indicators

It has been almost a decade that has been in business with some of the best-in-class comprehensive assignment writing solutions for Australian students related to all academic levels.

unknown said...

What a nice blog! I have enjoyed reading through the article although I landed on this site while I was looking for data analysis assignment help . I will be visiting this site occasionally to read more interesting and intriguing articles. I hope the writer will continually keep us updated with new information.

Carpet Cleaning Oshawa Costs said...

I enjoyed going through your blog post. Carpet Cleaning Oshawa Costs

unknown said...

What a nice blog! I have enjoyed reading through the article although I landed on this site while I was looking for greenhouse equipment suppliers in Kenya. I will be visiting this site occasionally to read more interesting and intriguing articles. I hope the writer will continually keep us updated with new information.

Website said...

I thought this was very well written post. Website

Eavestroughs said...

Thank you for this information. I went through and read your blog post. it was a nice bunch of posts. Eavestroughs

Assignment help said...

Nice..thanks for sharing....Really very interesting...Keep posting...

josee said...

Thank you for sharing such a useful content looking forward for more. Did you know? Hand Massagers for Arthritis is used to relieve common symptoms of many types of arthritis: reducing pain and stiffness, easing anxiety? Read more on Best Hand Massagers for Arthritis

assignment help said...

Buy Assignment Help at cheap rates from a trustworthy service provider in Australia for outstanding outcomes. Using online academic writing services, you can finish your work without any stress.
Assignment Help Online
Best Assignment Help
Assignment Helper
Assignment Help In USA
Online Assignment Help
Assignment Help Company
Assignment Help Experts
Assignment Help Service
Online Assignment Help Services

Assignment Help said...

Browse assignment help for getting academic writing services according to your subject requirements. Pay a reasonable amount to hire an academic writer for your effective project submission.
Online assignment help
assignment help online
assignment helper
online assignment helper

chandhran said...

Your article is very informative. Thanks for sharing the valuable information.
Data Science Course in Chennai
Data Science Courses in Bangalore
Data Science Training in Bangalore
Best Data Science Courses in Bangalore
Data Science Institute in Bangalore
Data Science Training Institutes in Bangalore
Data Science Training in BTM
AWS Training in Bangalore
DevOps Training in Bangalore
PHP Training in Bangalore

Arjundevan said...

awesome article,the content has very informative ideas, waiting for the next update...
SAS Training in Chennai
SAS Training Center in Chennai
SAS Analytics Training in Chennai
SAS Training in Anna Nagar
SAS Training in Tnagar
clinical sas training in chennai
Mobile Testing Training in Chennai
QTP Training in Chennai
Hibernate Training in Chennai
DOT NET Training in Chennai

Quicken support said...

While using Quicken due to technical glitches you may experience Quicken Oops or Quicken Unknown Error. To learn how to fix this common problem in a handy way, you are advised to read this blog-post. We put much effort here to make you understand.
quicken download error 15500.
Quicken Online Backup
Quicken Error CC-587

QuickBooks Help said...

QuickBooks Error 1603 windows 10 can occur due to corrupt files or incomplete installation. However, it can be resolved and can be back to the normal state.
quickbooks update error 15270

Elizbeth Smith said...

Greetings! This is my first visit to your blog!

Your blog provided us useful information to work on.
You have done a extraordinary job!

You can also find In freelancers for telecom and networking mutual assistance is a Global Marketplace which connects businesses and field engineers in telecom industry. The Fastest Growing Startup with a Global Workforce in 175 Countries. We have cu rrently 40000+ engineers signed up worldwide
Read More: Microsoft Office Specialist

Computer Network Support Specialists

mhesh said...

I have found your article useful in my search area thank you for help. Kindly keep updating us on new articles. Are you looking for the best air purifier with a washable filter? Would you like to find an air purifier with a permanent filter that never needs a replacement? If so, Visit Best Air Purifier with Washable Filter for more.

get assignment help online said...

Awesome post. I am a normal visitor of your blog and appreciate you taking the time to maintain the excellent site. I’ll be a regular visitor for a long time.
please visit
Assignment Help

Mathematics Assignment Help

Law Assignment Help

Assignment writing service