Prime (U.S.S. Prime)

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The two large pieces of the minesweeper, U.S.S. Prime on Scorpion Beach, Santa Cruz Island
Minesweeper, U.S.S. Prime on Scorpion Beach, Santa Cruz Island

Prime [U.S.S. Prime](#MSO-466) (1954-1983), wood-hulled minesweeper with all non-magnetic materials which was burned and salvaged at Scorpion Harbor on Santa Cruz Island by William and Michel Petersen in about 1983. Prime had been towed to the island from San Pedro by Petersen and his friend, Ray Cummings. Petersen pulled the Prime onto the beach during a high tide and repeatedly tried to burn her, with little success. She was so water-logged, she wouldn't burn. Weeks later, an internal fire set by Michel Petersen using diesel fuel and tires succeeded in burning Prime in half. Later, Jaret Owens sank her remaining large parts of bow and stern off Scorpion. During Petersen's five-year stay at Scorpion Ranch, three decommissioned minesweepers ended up off the east end of Santa Cruz Island. » Reaper and Spirit of America