The Last Days of the Peter Iredale

(Song by: Hank PaynePerformed by: Hank Payne – Song Notes)

Hank Payne

Hank Payne

She slid down the ways in Liverpool, England
In 18 and ninety-three
The Peter Iredale was her proud name
She sailed 14 years on the sea
Sailed 14 years on the sea.

Her iron mast and hull were the best of her day
They made her the pride of the fleet
A 4 masted barque of 2000 tons
She’d sail for American wheat
Sailed for American wheat.

        And the captain had little to say
        When the big ship was grounded that day
        The Peter Iredale was thrown on the sand
        But she spared the life of all hands
        She spared the life of all hands

Australia to Mexico sailing on ballast
She crossed the stormy seas
She took on supplies and fresh water in Salina Cruz
And put out again for the sea
Put out again for the sea.

After 28 days of clear sky and blue water
To the Oregon coast she came
Headed for Portland to take on her cargo
The finest of Northwest grain
Finest of Northwest grain.


She took her last bearing on the beacon at Tillamook
In the morning at 2 am
Standing off for the mouth of the Columbia
She put all her sheets to the wind
Put all her sheets to the wind

But a sudden southeaster put her into the breakers
That washed her up on Clatsop Beach
And there left her stranded in three fathoms of water
And the shoreline just out of reach
Shoreline just out of reach


The surf boats picked up the men, 20 in all
And the Captain brought the log safe to shore
The Peter Iredale settled into the sand
Never to sail anymore
Never to sail anymore

Still her iron ribs mark the line of her hull
Where she lies beneath the sand
Still her proud bow stands high in the air
A reminder to seafaring men
A reminder to seafaring men



The Last Days of the Peter Iredale, tells of a sailing ship whose iron ribs are still visible in the sand near Astoria, Oregon.

  • Song by Hank Payne
  • Performed on CD by Hank Payne

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