Imagine my surprise when I flipped to the “Money” section of my local paper this morning and read this headline: “Shipwreck is found in Gulf” [it has a different headline online]. Seems like an odd placement–but given all the Odyssey Marine news these days, the paper’s editors might be forgiven for confusing our cultural heritage with economic exploitation.
In any case, the 20o-year-old wreck found in almost 4,000 feet of water during a Shell Oil Company sonar survey in 2011 was recently visited by a NOAA expedition, which explored four other wrecks as well as numerous natural phenomena. This wreck, located almost 200 miles off the Gulf Coast, is in a surprisingly good state of preservation. Archaeologists most familiar with the site suggest the wreck dates from 1800-1830 based on the visible ceramic plates and glass bottles. Rare artifacts on the site include piles of muskets, cannons and ships stove, one of only a handful that survive worldwide. I’m sure we’ll be hearing about this wreck for years to come.
For more on the Okeanos Explorer and the 2012 Gulf of Mexico Expedition click here.