Heave-ho in Hudson River

Trireme in New York City Inc, a US-based group of history buffs, is trying to raise the $3 million it will take to get an ancient Greek warship sailing in the Hudson River for the 2012 tall ships festival on July 4, the Wall Street Journal reported.

A replica of a trireme — a galley deployed by the Greeks in the Persian War in 480 BC among other Mediterranean armies — already exists in Greece.

The Olympias was constructed by the Greek Navy in 1987, but it hasn?t been sailed since 1993, when it was taken to London. The Olympias also carried the Olympic flame prior to the 2004 Athens Games.

The replica of the 5th century BC vessel has 170 oars and is the fastest human-powered vessel on the planet.

Trireme in New York City Inc hope that they will be able to recruit the 170 oarsmen or oarswomen needed to propell the vessel, to return the Olympias to sea-worthy condition and to carry out the necessary repairs and trial runs before the ship is transported to New York head of the 2012 tall ship regatta.

According to the American group?s website, it has already received approval from the Greek Navy for the project and is in talks with the Seaport Museum in New York to dock the ship for a temporary exhibition on Athenian maritime history, featuring artifacts and items on loan from the Greek government.

The company is headed by Markos Marinakis of Marinakis Chartering, Ford Weiskittel of the Trireme Trust USA, Dr George Tsioulias of the Hellenic Medical Society of New York, Edward Kelly, Maritime Associate of the Port of NY and NJ, Joseph Hughes, Vincent Solarino and George Tsimis of the Shipowners Claims Bureau, and Charles Hirschler also of Trireme Trust USA.

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