The Wreck of the American Star

Das wrack der America-was a documentary about the American Star, wrecked on the beach in the Canary islands. The pictures below have been taken from a German TV documentary about the American Star (ex-America\West Point\Australis\Italis), and which is now sadly wrecked on the island of Feurteventura in the Canary Islands. The programme was broadcast on a German satellite tv station on July 2nd 1999 by the NDR television company.
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Thanks to ex-passenger Alan Waller I can now give you a few more details about ordering a copy of the documentary through the tv channels web-site:
If you want to order a copy, you have to transfer 35,- Euro (within Germany) and 40,- Euro within other European states to:
Vereins- und Westbank
BLZ 20030000
Kto 313361.

You should write your name, address and the title of the requested film in the field "issue".
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The pictures below have been taken from a German Documentary called: "Das Wreck Der America".

The Australis Cafe on Feurteventura.

Inside the Australis Cafe.

One of the ships alarm bells are on show in the cafe.

The Ladies and Gentlemans doors are made up of salvaged wreckage.

This mural was taken by one of the locals.

Heavy seas hit the wreck almost every day.

The anchor hits the side of the hull now and again, you can hear the clang on the cliffs nearby.

Storms batter the wreck in the Canary Islands.

Two locals climb up the side of the hull.

The funnel may be the next thing to fall by the looks of things.

It's very difficult to climb up these steps.

Another battered room on the wreck.

On deck...

Looking back onshore from the wreck.

the hatch up in the stern.

A view of the bridge windows.

Looking through one of the bridge windows.

Another view of the Main Lounge.

The wreck was lit up by the team filming the documentary.

Another view of the wreck lit up by the film crew.

A film by Manfred Preckel.

produced by:


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Translation of the film "Das wrack der America" broadcast in 1999 on German satellite tv.
The first local to be interviewed told how there is many mysteries surrounding the wreck, for example the tug was found days later passing Morocco without having informed the Spanish Coast Guard about what had happened. Still today the salvage company is not interested in giving information about the loss saying "Everything is clear!". Also interesting was the fact that the wreck can be reached without a boat at spring tide due to a sandbank that connects the vessel with the beach, but, due to the west coast's unpredictable seas going to the wreck is still absolutely dangerous. The Spanish ministry of defence today owns the wreck because it is on military ground. In 1996 a Greek businessman planned to demolish the afterpart of the American Star while he wanted to refloat the forepart. The "swimming rest" of the vessel was planned to be a swimming museum travelling the Canary islands. But after weeks of rumours the Greek disappeared and left some metal huts planned for the demolishing team at the beach which can still be found today. At the end of the documentary the condition of the wreck was investigated: more and more parts inside are weak so it is very dangerous to go on her. The hole in the Starboard hull is a result of the water's power.
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Welcome all visitors to the S.S. Australis Website, which has now been online since 1998!

I will continue to update the site if I receive a new story, or if you have interesting photos taken on the ship during your voyage on either the southbound, northbound, or on one of the South Pacific cruises. We used to do those trips several times a year from Melbourne, Sydney and Auckland (New Zealand).

I am deeply moved by the interest and wonderful contributions from the numerous passengers and crew over many years.

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You can send an e-mail to me on the link below:

Please feel free to e-mail me on this link

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Warm Regards


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