Great adventures of the little mermaid
For ten years Monica and Volker Elmo have been spending their vacations on the Spiekeroog island. This autumn, the couple from the city of Schwerte was back to the island and has found something interesting: a figurehead, thrown ashore by the "Harvard" storm.
Monica Elmo found a well-preserved wooden mermaid on the beach. The woman and her husband immediately realized that it's a ship's figurehead and contacted the island's museum. Museum Chairman Dieter Mader has determined that the mermaid is half the size of a normal figurehead (75 cm). It used to be attached with new-technology screws, which meant that it has belonged to a flat-bottomed ship of the postwar period, and most probably a replica. But Mader could not tell where it came from exactly. "We would, of course, like to have a name engraved on the mermaid. Then we could find out whether it belongs to any known vessel". The German newspaper "Ostsee-Zeitung" has published an article about the unusual discovery.
In the meantime, the crew of the Russian frigate "Shtandart" made a post on Facebook: "In the end of October in a heavy storm during the transition from Heligoland to Terschelling we have lost four bow decorations". When Sven Eric Nosler - a Hamburg skipper and the right hand man of the "Standard's" captain - Vladimir Martus, saw the article in the newspaper, he realized that it was about one of the four frigate's mermaids, and contacted the Elmo spouses. The mermaid will be back home in May.
While the rest of the mermaids are not found, the captain took off four similar figures from the larboard in order to make the ship look symmetrical. Nosler hopes that other lost mermaids will also emerge eventually. After all, these are special exemplars, as they recognizably depict volunteers who helped building the ship.