Arthur Kill ship graveyard in Staten Island
There’s an area of Staten Island in New York, where “any and all photography” is banned. But that hasn’t stopped curious drone operators flying their drones over the Arthur Kill ship graveyard to capture footage of this extraordinary area that you’d least expect in a cosmopolitan city.
First built in the 1930s by the Wittes Marine Equipment company, Arthur Kill was an area where shipwrecks were brought to be stripped of their valuable parts in order to be used elsewhere. (Kill is the Dutch word for creek, and this area was popularised by Dutch settlers, hence the creepy name.)
But owner John J Witte was a bit of an eccentric and refused to allow many boats to be stripped. So that’s why this area of marshy, dirty waters is now home to hundreds of decomposing ships and vessels.
Over 400 of them now lay in their final resting place in the waters of Staten Island. Until his death in 1980, John Witte was a fierce defender of his property, hence why the area became so mysterious to outsiders, desperate to get a look.
Now, we can all view drone footage of the sorry looking ships, some of which have now actually been stripped of their valuable materials in order to be reused in other industries. And it sure does make for a curious sight!