Historical documents said that the ship carried a cook for the crew, a first cook, a second cook, a pastry cook, a pastry cook's boy and a bread cook. A "captain of chickens" and a butcher also were on the ship. This group of people must have been on board to prepare food for important passengers as well as the crew. Among these important passengers were Father Joseph Buenaventura Moraleda and Dr. Diego Sanchez Pareja, both of whom were prominent members of the clergy.
Archaeologists found animal bones on El Nuevo Constante that provided some idea of what people ate on the ship. Bones included those of cow, pig, sheep, fish, turtle and chicken. The bones of domesticated animals show that live animals were on board, as well as dried or preserved cuts of meat. Spanish ships of the period commonly carried live pigs, cows, sheep and hens on trips to and from the New World. The animals supplied fresh meat and eggs for the long trans-Atlantic voyage.
Pieces of hand grinding stones found on the wreck suggest that the ship carried corn or other grain. An olive pit found in a concretion shows that olives, familiar to Spanish sailors and citizens, were on board.
Records note that wine was a regular item on a sailor's daily menu. Archaeologists found several fragments of wine bottles scattered throughout the ship. Some artifacts reveal how sailors stored food on the long trips to and from the New World. Broken wooden barrel fragments and pieces of iron barrel hoops came from the wreck. Divers also found more than 100 olive jar fragments. These large, ceramic, storage jars could have held olive oil, water, wine, honey, olives, beans, spices or lard.
Goat or sheep horns and chicken bones.
Olive jar fragments. Olive jars varied in size and shape. Unbroken, the globular form seen here would have measured nearly 10 inches across.
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