A huge ship, solemn and lonely of aspect, ... carried over the reef upon a gigantic wave, and perched upon a bed of coral in which she now fitted as snugly as in a dry-dock, she had withstood the storms and tides of years, and doubtless must stay in that solitary spot until time should disintegrate her metal and dissolve its atoms in the eternal sea..

FREDERICK O'BRIEN
ATOLLS OF THE SUN


In 1955 LIFE MAGAZINE featured a photo essay titled "Storied Isles of Romance in the South Seas". All of the photographs included in this feature were the work of famed photographer Eliot Elisofon.

He captured the County of Roxburgh when she stood a little straighter. Her masts are down however, floating in the shallow water nearby.


SO FAR FROM THE CLYDE by Mark Knopfler



They pull out her cables and hack off her hatches
Too poor to be wasteful with pity or time
They swarm on her carcass with torches and axes
Like a whale on the bloody shoreline

Stripped of her pillars, her stays and her stanchions
When there's only her bones on the wet poison land
Steel ropes will drag her with winches and engines
'Til it's only a stain on the sand

So far from the Clyde
Together we ride
We did ride






Above is O. R. Allred and his Takaroan friend, Mapuhi.

In 1938 O. Rudeen Allred, a Mormon Missionary, spent several months on Takaroa. The photographs above and below were taken during his stay.

These earlier photographs show the masts and decking still in place and the ship stands fairly straight.

Today it lists starboard at a 45 degree angle.

Maphui purchased the wreckage from Lloyds for 1500 francs and removed and sold all wood and ornaments. When he died at 80 his coffin was made of wood from the County.

Below is Elder Wilde, a missionary, and Mapuhi.