LYNBROOK - In the middle of the Mariners Burying Ground in Lynbrook’s Rockville Cemetery sits a monument remembering those lost on two ships in the 1830s.
In November of 1836, a ship from England, the Bristol, ran aground during a ferocious storm near Rockaway Beach. According to historians, 100 people perished in the crash. Just three months later, in January 1837, another ship from England, the Mexico, hit the Lincoln Boulevard jetty in Long Beach and sank. The 138 passengers froze to death when the captain and his crew abandoned ship.
Lynbrook Village Historian Arthur Matteson wrote a book entitled “Water and Ice” in which he describes the tragedies of the Mexico and the Bristol. Matteson says he uncovered the stories of the doomed ships when he moved in the 1970s. The monument was erected at the corner of Ocean and Merrick Road. In his book, Matteson pays tribute to the Long Island baymen and farmers who built the monument.