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History Buff, a blog for history lovers everywhere! History Buff brings
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historical fiction writer I am fascinated by news stories featuring the
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Beeswax from centuries-old shipwrecks still found on Oregon beaches
GOLD BEACH, Ore. — It was the amber luminescent glow of an egg-shaped object in the winter sun that grabbed Loretta LeGuee's attention on the beach she had combed for years.
Experts say it almost certainly is a chunk of beeswax from a Spanish trading vessel that sank off the coast more than 300 years ago.
The wax has been turning up on Oregon's north coast in the Nehalem and Manzanita areas for centuries. A find this far south is rare.
"From the picture they sent me, that's what it looks like to me, it's definitely beeswax," said Scott Williams of Olympia, assistant state archaeologist for Washington.
He leads the Beeswax Wreck Project of volunteers probing why blocks of beeswax have been popping up along the Oregon Coast for centuries.
This hunk could have been from the Santo Christo de Burgos, which sank in 1693, or the San Francisco Xavier, which disappeared in 1705. Both were en route from the Philippines to Acapulco, Mexico, with tons of wax.