Exploring Maysville's Bermuda Triangle
The Ohio River has bested the Hercules, a once mighty barge with a crane that could lift sunken vessels.
Sapped of its strength, the Hercules rests at the bottom of the river, only its crane and two steel beams jutting above water near the shoreline.
Next to it, a towboat lies partially submerged, its pilothouse listing like a drunken sailor. And next to that, the rusting hull of an old Navy minesweeper breaks the river's surface like the belly of a dead whale.
Cincinnati Enquirer, 1998
The story of Maysville's Bermuda Triangle began around 1992 when a barge sank near the Kentucky shoreline in West Maysville Kentucky. A subsequent salvage operation in 1994 tried to raise the sunken barge with two Navy minesweepers. The minesweepers were the next victim as they became stuck in the mud. A towboat trying to free the minesweepers also fell victim when damage to its engines rendered it crippled.
Next came a salvage barge named "The Hercules". The Maysville Bermuda Triangle made short work of it as well. While hoisting the original barge, the crane aboard the Hercules broke as the barge reached the surface, and down it sank again. Then the Hercules itself sank, coming to rest on top of the barge it was supposed to save. Eventually the minesweepers and the towboat sank as well. The entire salvage operation nick-named John Beatty's Navy, after its owner, fell victim to what an Army Corps of Engineers spokesperson would later call, "'The Bermuda Triangle of the Ohio River". Full Story
Today, you can still see remnants of the wreckage peaking out of the Ohio River (see photo above). Some local residents have called it a junkyard and feel that it blights the shoreline. I completely disagree. It's actually quite a remarkable addition to Maysville, especially when coupled with the story behind the wreckage.