The Maritime Museum of San Diego is entirely made up of historic ships. Star of India is a representative of the ships. As the world’s oldest active sailing ship, Star of India began her life on the stocks at Ramsey Shipyard on the Isle of Man in 1863. Iron ships were experiments then, with most vessels still being built of wood. The ship launched into her element within five months of laying her keel. She bore the name Euterpe, after the Greek muse of music and poetry.
Euterpe was a full-rigged ship and would remain so until 1901 when the Alaska Packers Association rigged her down to bark, her present rig. She began her sailing life with two near-disastrous voyages to India. On her first trip, she suffered a collision and a mutiny. On her second trip, a cyclone caught Euterpe in the Bay of Bengal, and with her topmasts cut away, she barely made port. Shortly afterward, her first captain died on board and was buried at sea. After such a hard luck beginning, Euterpe settled down and made four more voyages to India as a cargo ship. In 1871 she was purchased by the Shaw Savill line of London and embarked on a quarter century of hauling emigrants to New Zealand, sometimes also touching Australia, California, and Chile. She made 21 circumnavigations in this service, some of them lasting up to a year. It was rugged voyaging, with the little iron ship battling through terrific gales, “laboring and rolling in a most distressing manner,” according to her log. Life aboard was especially hard on the emigrants cooped up in her ‘tween deck, fed a diet of hardtack and salt junk, subject to mal-de-mer and a host of other ills. It is astonishing that their death rate was so low. They were a tough lot, however, drawn from the working classes of England, Ireland, and Scotland, and most went on to prosper in New Zealand.
What’s new for Star of India in 2022? The Maritime Museum of San Diego added marine animal skeletons for her.
The decoration of the animal skeleton makes the Star of India more mysterious. And the skeletons will bring the explorers a supernatural experience. Artificial animal skeletons/fossils are widely used in different sites, scenic spots, offices, and even home decor, etc. Do you expect a visit to Star of India? And you’ll come across the Archelon Turtle skeleton and the Tylosaurus skeleton during your visit there!