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Pirates Ahoy? Replica 17th-Century Flagship Anchors Off Norwalk Harbor

The Kalmar Nyckel anchored off the coast of Norwalk on Tuesday evening.
The Kalmar Nyckel anchored off the coast of Norwalk on Tuesday evening. Photo Credit: John Haffey
The replica vessel sails the East Coast from April to October, serving as a floating classroom and historical center.
The replica vessel sails the East Coast from April to October, serving as a floating classroom and historical center. Photo Credit: John Haffey

NORWALK, Conn. -- Maritime past came to life off the coast of Norwalk, as a replica of explorer Peter Minuit's flagship, Kalmar Nyckel, took up anchorage in Long Island Sound on Tuesday evening.

Built and launched from its home port of Wilmington, Del., in 1997, the vessel is a full-scale re-creation of Dutch explorer Peter Minuit’s original ship, which he used to found the colony of New Sweden, and eventually the state of Delaware, in 1638.

Today, the replica serves as floating classroom, allowing guests to experience life during the golden age of sail.

According to the Kalamar Nyckel's website, the vessel measures 93 feet on deck and with a sparred length of 141 feet. The original armament most likely consisted of 12 six‐pounder cast iron cannons, with two smaller swivel guns attached to the quarterdeck rails. The ship was merchant vessel, but the armament allowed for it to also operate as a naval vessel.

The original ship served both peaceful and military exploits, exploring and settling the new world until its sinking off the coast on Scotland in 1652.

Today's replica sails over 3,000 miles annually, visiting ports-of-call from Virginia through New England. The Kalmar Nyckel was on her way up the Hudson River to Newburgh, N.Y., before returning home to Lewes, Del., by mid-month.

Click here to read more about the Kalmar Nyckel .

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