Nikumaroro's Secret Shipwreck

Category: Fun Fact

GPS Coordinates: -4.660833, -174.544444

Nikumaroro Island may be better known for the ongoing archaeological investigation into Amelia Earhart’s disappearance, but it’s also the site of a dramatic shipwreck. On November 29, 1929, the British freighter SS Norwich City wrecked on the reef here during a tropical storm. When a fire broke out in the ship, the crew were forced to wade across the reef and seek shelter on the atoll. Eleven men perished in the endeavor but the rest were later rescued. The SS Norwich City was deemed unsalvageable due to Nikumaroro’s remote location and there it still sits, being slowly eroded by the relentless forces of nature.

Some of photos presented here are courtesy of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), the non-profit organization spearheading the search for Earhart on this atoll. The photos show how the shipwreck appeared throughout the twentieth century and up to the modern day.

Related Features: Secrets of Shipwrecks | Still Searching: The Mysterious Disappearance of Amelia Earhart