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Antikythera Wreck Possibly Involves Two Ships Email

Saturday, 12 January 2013 15:13
Last Updated on Saturday, 12 January 2013 15:21


By Stella Tsolakidou

GREEK ISLAND OF ANTIKYTHERA - Marine archaeologist-technician Dr Brendan Foley from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution caused quite a stir while presenting the findings of the most recent underwater archaeological survey conducted at the Antikythera Shipwreck site in Greece, during the annual meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America in Seattle last week.

Dr Foley suggested that despite common and current belief, the famous Antikythera Shipwreck could actually comprise of two ships instead of one. Moreover, the sea floor could hold more artifacts like the unique Antikythera Mechanism that is on display at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens and is shrouded with mystery about its workings and possible uses.

Read more: Antikythera Wreck Possibly Involves Two Ships

Shipwreck exposed as river levels drop Email

Wednesday, 09 January 2013 11:10
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 January 2013 11:31


What may look like a pile of aged lumber in a snowy landscape are actually the remnants of an old boat uncovered along the banks of the Mississippi River in Perry County as the river drops to historic low levels. The vessel is just one of several up and down the shores of the drought-stricken water way that have come to the surface in recent months. In the background on the hill is Chester, Ill.

By Amanda Layton

PERRYVILLE, MO. - As the Mississippi River continues to drop to historically low levels, artifacts long submerged have been uncovered near the shores of the massive waterway.

A couple on an afternoon stroll late last month stumbled across such a find when they located the remnants of a ship that apparently sank long ago and came to rest on the Missouri side, within walking distance of the bridge that spans from the Boise Brule Bottoms of Perry County to Chester, Ill.

“On Sunday, Dec 23, we discovered the remains of an old shipwreck on the west bank of the Mississippi River, on the Missouri side, a little more than quarter mile south of the Chester bridge, between the bridge and the old Gibbar dry dock area,” said Donna Lintner, a Perry County resident who found the partially exposed ship.

Read more: Shipwreck exposed as river levels drop

Thieves who looted coins from ancient Roman site banned from METAL DETECTING Email

Tuesday, 08 January 2013 14:29
Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 January 2013 14:38


UK - Two thieves have become the first people in Britain to be handed ASBOs banning them from metal detecting.

Peter Cox and Darren West were given the unique punishment after they looted ancient coins from a Roman site belonging to English Heritage.

The pair were caught by police who raided their homes and found a haul of coins from the Iron Age, Roman and mediaeval periods worth hundreds of pounds.

Officers also discovered pottery, metal antiquities and maps of Chester Farm, the Roman settlement near Irchester in Northamptonshire which the thieves ransacked.

Cox, 69, and 51-year-old West were arrested in the summer when they were seen illegally digging trenches on the land.

When police searched their homes in towns near the historic site, they were able to match the tools they recovered to plaster casts of marks left in the soil.

Experts from the British Museum helped to analyze and date the recovered items, which have not been officially valued, and link them to the site.

Cox and West pleaded guilty to two counts of theft from a scheduled monument on December 19.

They were each given 52-week suspended sentences and were ordered to pay £750 costs and £750 compensation.

The thieves were also issued with ASBOs preventing them from using metal detecting equipment.

The coins they discovered at the site are similar to the massive haul of 50,000 Iron Age items found in Jersey last year, the largest hoard of Celtic coins ever unearthed.

Read more: Thieves who looted coins from ancient Roman site banned from METAL DETECTING

TreasureWorks Launches Expedition 13 Bak’tun Email

Tuesday, 18 December 2012 11:40
Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 December 2012 13:06

For Immediate Release

TreasureWorks Launches Expedition 13 Bak’tun

GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA – Tuesday, 18 December, 2012 - TreasureWorks, LLC., today launched its latest expedition into the Central American nation of Guatemala. International Adventurer and Treasure Hunter Tommy Vawter launched the expedition from Guatemala City where they have been on the ground for most of the last 2 years researching ancient Maya culture, and searching for and exploring ancient Maya Ruins throughout that country’s central highlands.

While always on the hunt for treasure, this expedition is more adventure this time around, and documenting the events leading up to what has been billed as the apocalypse, the demise of mankind, the return of ancient aliens, and according to the Maya the last day of the Mayan Calendar and the end of the 13th bak’tun. Regardless of what happens on the 21st of December, Tommy and his team will be at the center of this historic once in a lifetime event.

The most northern district of Guatemala is the Peten District and is bordered by Mexico’s Yucatán to the north, and the small Caribbean country of Belize to the east. This part of Guatemala is considered to be the center of Mayan culture and home to the Maya ruins known as Tikal. The expedition plans on being on the ground for the next week continuing its exploration of Mayan civilization, with the unique opportunity to witness firsthand the ancient Maya rituals associated with the end of one Bak’tun, and the beginning of the next. 

TreasureWorks, LLC., is a privately held treasure hunting company involved in the world-wide search for lost treasure. For regular updates and video accounts on the progress of the expedition, visit the expedition’s website and Forum at www.treasureworks.com, or you can email Tommy Vawter at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Hamilton's War of 1812 shipwrecks 'an archeologist's dream' Email

Thursday, 13 December 2012 13:31
Last Updated on Thursday, 13 December 2012 13:42


The Hamilton and the Scourge — two wooden ships from the War of 1812 — are aging well at the bottom of Lake Ontario, according to surveyors who have been studying the wrecks.

The American schooners, which sank in 1813, lie 90 meters below the surface of the lake, about 10.5 kilometers off Port Dalhousie. The ships have been owned by the City of Hamilton since 1980, but a partnership with Parks Canada allows surveyors to map out every inch of the boats.

“One of the things you have to do in order to safely do archeological work is to see it on a map,” said Michael McAllister, Hamilton’s coordinator for the survey project.

Using the latest technology, the entire site was mapped out over the course of several years, allowing experts to better determine how risky it would be to take next steps, like recovering artifacts.

“We have no plans, but we need to know the risks to prudently move forward,” McAllister said.

The team also wanted to get detailed images of the wrecks because they're being colonized by a relative of the zebra mussel. A layer of mussels could eventually cover the ships.

Read more: Hamilton's War of 1812 shipwrecks 'an archeologist's dream'

Swedes in massive buried treasure find Email

Tuesday, 04 December 2012 13:02
Last Updated on Tuesday, 04 December 2012 13:12


Archaeologists have uncovered over 1,000 silver coins dating back to the 1600s in a field in southern Sweden, coins believed to have been buried by rich and worried farmers in during the Scanian War.

“This is quite extraordinary,” Bo Friman, archaeologist at the Swedish National Heritage Board (Riksantikvarieämbetet), told Sveriges Television (SVT).

“We were so focused that we forget to stop for food.”

With the help of metal detectors and spades, archaeologists in Helsingborg pulled up a total of 1,150 silver coins - what they consider to be a record haul for the area.

Friman and a colleague were carrying out archaeological research into the site of a former settlement, Todarp.

“There are 70 or so such treasures that were buried in Skåne during the Scanian War. Most are not as big as this one. The usual interpretation is that it was rich farmers who buried them during the war, then died, and couldn’t dig them up again,” said archaeologist Kennet Stark, who was also on the scene.

Musket bullets were also found in the vicinity. 

“This shows that there have been soldiers fighting here. Several of the bullets are flattened and you can clearly see they have been fired and have made contact,” Stark told SVT.

The coins come from both Denmark and Sweden, and were most likely buried between 1676-1679 when the Skanian war was fought between the two countries.


Courtesy The Local

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More QAR cannons found at wreck site Email

Sunday, 18 November 2012 14:09
Last Updated on Sunday, 18 November 2012 14:23


State underwater archaeologist and conservator Wendy Welsh directs the offloading of a cannon retrieved from the Queen Anne’s Revenge in October 2011. Two new cannons were discovered at the site on Oct. 23 of this year. (Cheryl Burke photo)



BEAUFORT — State underwater archaeologists were pleasantly surprised recently to find two more cannons to add to the growing number found at the Queen Anne’s Revenge shipwreck site in Beaufort Inlet.

Divers were about to close down the site for the fall dive season on Oct. 23 when they found two carriage guns north of a larger pile of cannons in the mid-ship section, according to John Morris, deputy state archaeologist who oversees the QAR project.

“We didn’t expect to find these guns,” he said.

This brings the total number of cannons discovered at the pirate Blackbeard’s flagship to 27. One of those is a signal gun, which is on display at the N.C. Maritime Museum in Beaufort, responsible for curatorship of QAR artifacts.

Read more: More QAR cannons found at wreck site

Royal burial found Email

Friday, 26 October 2012 15:29
Last Updated on Friday, 26 October 2012 15:43



The finding was presented at the National Palace of Culture and project scientists call him the "most important archaeological discovery of 2012".This structure was located in the park number six, ten feet deep.

Due to the characteristics of the collar bearing the Mayan king, archaeologists called it Chman K'utz vulture-grandfather and, as evidence that investigations reveal, was buried between 400 and 700 a.C., in the Late Classic period, making it the oldest royal burial Mesoamerica discovered so far.


Christa Schieber, technical coordinator Abaj Takalik park, said the burial features Takalik Abaj confirm that was the cradle of Mayan civilization, as the burial has features of the evolution of the Maya Olmec civilization.

Chman K'utz Schieber explained that ruled when it was decided to change the system of astronomical observation and also when they built the first pyramid platforms sacred buildings, which led to the civilization of the Early Classic period.

The archaeologist said that the Mayan priest would have been a very important character in Takalik Abaj.

"The evidence indicates that it was the priest who gathered up all the wisdom," said Schiebers, who reported that the funeral were located along 800 pieces of jade blue, white and green, pottery and a necklace of extraordinary beauty.

Ivonne Putseys, director general of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Sports, said that the discovery will change the history of the study of the Mayan civilization.

"This finding is the most important and earliest in Mesoamerica," said the official.

This is the second royal burial has been discovered in Takalik Abaj after it was revealed in 2002 the first, dating from 150 to. C.

They ask museum

Miguel Orrego, administrative head Takalik Abaj park, said the pieces found remain in a safe place. However, the authorities requested the completion of the museum to be built on the site, for safekeeping and display.

"It takes political will. That's all, because the museum has an increase of 40 percent, "Orrego said.

In response, Putseys said that what is needed are "some paperwork" and said that the work will end next year.


Courtesy Prensa Libre

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Historic Shipwreck Identified at Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Email

Tuesday, 23 October 2012 16:15
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 October 2012 16:35

schooner_George_E._BillingsFive-masted lumber schooner George E. Billingsshortly after launching flying the Hall Bros. house flag from the mast. The Hall Bros. built the 224-foot wooden vessel at Port Blakely, Washington for their own account in 1903.

Seventy years after it was scuttled off Los Angeles, Calif., government archaeologists have found the wrecked remains of a rare Pacific Coast schooner that was employed in the lumber trade during the early 1900s.

Today, Robert Schwemmer, maritime archaeologist for NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, presented a scientific paper on the George E. Billingshistory and its discovery in February 2011 at the eighth California Islands Symposium in Ventura, Calif.

The Billings, a five-masted schooner built in 1903 by Halls Bros. of Port Blakeley, Wash., hauled lumber from the Northwest to Hawaii, Mexico, South America, Australia and southern California. After decades servicing the lumber trade it was converted into a sport-fishing barge. In 1941, the owner decided to scuttle the aging vessel off the coast of Santa Barbara Island.

Since the early 1990s, archaeologists and historians with Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary and Channel Islands National Park have searched for the Billings. The wreck was located using research provided by tech-diver Steve Lawson, researcher Gary Fabian, and Patrick Smith with Coastal Maritime Archaeology Resources.

Read more: Historic Shipwreck Identified at Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

QAR project gets big donation Email

Monday, 22 October 2012 12:17
Last Updated on Monday, 22 October 2012 12:30

QARGov. Bev Perdue talks to Bob Lowery of Morehead City following a Queen Anne’s Revenge press conference held Friday at the N.C. Maritime Museum in Beaufort. (Cheryl Burke photo)



BEAUFORT, NC — When an appeal for donations to fund continued archaeology work on the Queen Anne’s Revenge shipwreck project went out Friday, Eric and Rita Bigham of Chapel Hill knew they had to respond.

Immediately following a press conference held at the N.C. Maritime Museum, where N.C. Department of Cultural Resources Secretary Linda Carlisle gave the appeal, the Bighams, who have a boat in Beaufort, agreed to donate the remaining $32,500 to complete a matching grant to receive $450,000 for the project.

Mr. Bigham, a retired chemist, said, “We’ve been supporting the museum and have been involved with Friends of the Museum a long time. We decided this was our chance to step up and play a bigger part in this project.”

Mrs. Bigham, a retired schoolteacher, said she wanted to support the education outreach efforts of the project as well.

The press conference, at which N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue also spoke, was held to announce the fundraising effort and recognize those who have supported the project.

But Ms. Carlisle was caught off guard by the unexpected donation.

“We are incredibly grateful and I’m really overwhelmed,” said Ms. Carlisle, who thanked the Bighams after the press conference. “We did not expect this.”

Read more: QAR project gets big donation