The Portland is a 289 foot long freighter and is resting in 55 feet of water. It is about 18 miles southeast of the Beaufort Inlet. It is also known as the "P Wreck". The stern is on its port side and is mostly intact. The propeller can usually be seen sticking up out of the sand. There is a compartment on the stern that still contains .50-caliber and some 2-inch rounds. There is a mast that is lying between the stern and the bow. The bow is pointed up toward the surface and is about 25 feet from the surface and still has 2 anchors still in place.
During the summer, the water temperature ranges from the upper 70's to the low 80's. Because it is close to the shoals, visibility averages 20 feet, but can get up to 40-50 feet. The ship rests on a nice sandy bottom. Sheephead, triggerfish, sea bass, and spadefish frequent his wreck. Moderate currents are common to this wreck.
The Portland was originally called the Jacox. In 1942, the Portland was operating along the Pacific coast. In January of 1943, she started operating in the Atlantic Ocean. Her first Atlantic trip was from Philadelphia to Havana. On February 11, 1943, she got caught in a storm and ran aground on the shoals of Cape Lookout. All of the crew abandoned ship before the seas battered and broke the ship.