Decommissioned Coast Guard cutter Bramble to go to auction

Oct. 18 (UPI) — The decommissioned U.S. Coast Guard cutter USCGC Bramble, once a familiar site on the Great Lakes, will be auctioned in November.

The vessel left its military service in 2003 and in 2013 was sold to a company which refurbished it and displayed it as a floating museum. The company’s unpaid bills will force an auction of the historic, 180-foot long ship in Mobile, Ala., on Nov. 6.

“We hope that a passionate person or institution will be able to save her,” said a spokesman for Inchcape Shipping Services, Inc., the plaintiff in the case.

The ship is one of 39 seagoing buoy tenders built for the Coast Guard between 1942 and 1944, and in 1947 participated in Operation Crossroads, the first test of an atomic bomb’s effect on surface ships in the Pacific Ocean. The Bramble was located about 15 miles from the atoll to watch the detonation of an atomic bomb over the target area before departing for Hawaii.

In 1957, the reinforced ship was one of three Coast Guard vessels to successfully attempt a Northwest Passage, sailing through semi-charted waters north of Canada from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean. The 4,500 nautical mile trip took 64 days.

The Bramble spent its last days in the Coast Guard involved in law enforcement, search-and-rescue work and buoy tending on the Great Lakes, with home ports of Detroit and Port Huron, Mich. After it was decommissioned, it briefly sailed around the Caribbean Sea and was featured in the 2016 film Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

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