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Columbus replicas dock along Buffalo waterfront

Chris Caya/wbfo news

The Nina and the Pinta, replicas of the ships that Columbus sailed on his trans-Atlantic voyages, are now in downtown Buffalo.

The ships ended up in Buffalo Wednesday, when the Ferry Street lift bridge broke down and kept them from sailing the Black Rock Canal to North Tonawanda.

The Nina, hand made without power tools, is considered the most historically correct Columbus replica ever built.

Captain Stephen Sanger admits it's not very big.

"This was over 520 years ago. So you're looking at what we call 'Space Shuttles of the 1400s0'. Columbus made four voyages on ships this size. He survived them all."   

Senior Captain Morgan Sanger has been with the Columbus Foundation nearly thirty years. He not only sails the ships, Sanger helped build them both in Brazil.

He says the goal is to educate people about history.  

"We've been doing this, the Foundation's been raising funds for the construction since 1986. And now the ships, since they were launched, have to make their own money by tickets...charters, movies, whatever."
The Nina and the Pinta are open for tours through Tuesday, June 23rd, from 9AM till 6PM at the Erie Basin Marina.