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The Battleship Vasa—The 1628 Disaster

vasabattlehipfiring.jpgCommissioned by King Vasa of Sweden for the war with Poland, the battleship Vasa was to be the fiercest naval vessel for the early 1600s. However, there was one small glitch that prevented the Polish fleet from running in fear. Ten minutes after the ship was launched, it sank to the bottom of the sea.

Raised in 1961, the Vasa now resides in a museum in Sweden and tells an interesting story. The Vasa Ship Museum website has a lot of pictures of the battleship with more of the story of King Vasa and his Waterloo. It seems the King wanted two cannon decks, rather than the standard on deck and the top-heavy ship couldn’t withstand the wind or rising seas.

I was not familiar with the Vasa or its story, so a little research was in order. I located several websites with additional pictures and information. For more details on the background and the ship itself, visit The Vasa—The Royal Warship and be drawn into an intriguing story more than four centuries old.

Sweden calls on Texas A&M to rescue iconic vessel | Chron.com – Houston Chronicle
battle-ship-vasa.JPGSTOCKHOLM, SWEDEN — The world’s best-preserved 17th century warship is rotting away here, and Sweden is turning to experts from Texas A&M University and other institutions worldwide for a way to protect the Vasa, which had a spectacular but brief career.

The problem is that sulfuric acid is eating away at the 64-gun vessel. The acid formed when the mammoth ship was exposed to air after it was salvaged in 1961.

The ornate wooden ship, which sank just 10 minutes after it was launched in 1628, is not only a centerpiece of Swedish naval history but also a prime tourist attraction.

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