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U.S.A.: Rossville Boatyard

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Rossville Boatyard | U.S.A. | Americas

[Visited: August 2008]

It was a much longer drive than I thought to reach the other side of Staten Island - the drive gave me a good impression of the island. Just as the bus made a left turn, I saw some rusty wrecks off the shore, and I decided to get off immediately at the next stop. This must be the boat cemetery. When asking for the boat cemetery at the gas station, people didn't seem to know what I was referring to; in the end they pointed me to a gate a few hundred metres down the road. Once there, it turned out to be a scrapyard. In fact, the entire area is a scrapyard, including all the shipwrecks off the coast. In fact, this scrapyard once was the largest of its kind on the East Coast, and came into existence in 1964.

Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Rusty remains of boats and ships

A voice behind a counter with a mirror giving me the impression I was talking to myself, told me that for insurance reasons, it was not allowed to enter the area. As it was clear there was no negotiating with this invisible person, I left the area, disillusioned. I walked back to the intersection I came from, and again walked towards the shore, which allowed for a limited view on the shipwrecks I had seen from the bus. A sign telling me to keep off private property prevented me from venturing further in. I was wondering if I could at least reach the hill I saw, which might give some distant view of the boat cemetery, the owner of the house approached me, telling me I was allowed to pass his sign. I gladly accepted the offer, and was on my way.

Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Smaller boats rusting away

I had to cut through some trees before getting to the shore. From here, however, the views were much better. The polluted water smelled, and the rusting metal hulls and decaying wood gave this place a very distinct character. I could see a tugboat, with its proud chimney above the rusty wreck, some ships, ferries, and many smaller boats, just stacked one on top of the other. A pity there is no better way to explore this area. It extends much further, to where I could not go. Moreover, nasty flies were biting me everywhere, eventually forcing me to leave this slightly weird place.

Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Small rusty boats at Rossville
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Capsized wreck of a ship off the Staten Island coast
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Bow of shipwreck sticking out Arthur Kill
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Parking lot of extensive scrapyard at Rossville
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Shipwrecks lying off the Staten Island coast in Arthur Kill
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Boats and parts rusting away at Rossville
Picture of Rossville Boatyard (U.S.A.): Decaying cabin of boat off Staten Island

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