Around midnight on July 25, 1956, the luxury passenger liner Andrea Doria collided with the Stockholm in a fog bank 50 miles south of Nantucket Island. Eleven hours later, after most of its passengers, including actress Ruth Roman, had been rescued, the stricken liner turned on its starboard side and sank in 250 feet of water.
Sent to a watery grave along with 46 of its 1706 passengers was a fortune in paintings, sculptures, tapestries, and other artwork, which has lured treasure hunters for more than four decades. Often overlooked, however, has been a priceless piece of automotive history. Locked in the Andrea Doria’s cargo hold was a one-of-a-kind “idea car” from Chrysler, the “Norseman,” which no one but its craftsmen at the Ghia studios in Italy had ever seen. A few publicity photos and drawings are all the public has ever seen of the car. But that may be about to change.
This summer, John Moyer of Moyer Expeditions, which holds the salvage rights to the liner, has decided to dive into the cargo hold in search of what remains of the Norseman.
“We’ll attempt to locate it and possibly photograph it,” Moyer said from his offices in Vineland, New Jersey. “Beyond that, it depends on what condition it’s in.”
Whatever is left of the Norseman would be put on display by Moyer in an exhibit of the ship’s artifacts he’s…