The pioneering Acadia survived wars and the Halifax Explosion. Will she survive neglect?
Daylight filtered through two small holes in the side of CSS Acadia’s hull about a metre and half above the waterline as the ship sat stagnating by the Halifax waterfront. When they were first spotted by a caretaker this spring, he tapped the edges with his boot and more rusted steel crumbled away. Built in 1913, the Acadia has mapped coastal waters not explored since the time of James Cook, survived the Halifax Explosion and served in two world wars. But in the end, some worry, it may be time and lack of money that finally sink the ship. “Next thing is going to be a hole five foot below the water line, which is not good,” said Charles Maginley, a retired member of the navy and the Canadian Coast Guard who has authored two books that feature the Acadia. Emails and documents obtained through freedom-of-information laws paint an alarming picture of the state of the Acadia, which since 1976 has been recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada. Whatever fixes are needed could cost millions of dollars. The rust and marine growth that cling to her hull only hint at the issues that may lurk and won’t fully be known until she’s hauled out of the water, something that’s not happened in eight years. (Cassie Williams, CBC News)
Additional coverage on this issue included:
• War surviving navy vessel now faces destructive salt water (CP, Toronto Star)
• Fate of vessel that survived wars, Halifax Explosion unclear as rust sets in (CP, North Shore News)