It’s Tech Week for the SHA blog about underwater and public archaeology. We’re very pleased to be a part of this with the lead off article. You can read all posts here: http://www.sha.org/blog/index.php/category/technology/
Posts Tagged ‘Maritime History’
The Peruvian Centre for Maritime and Underwater Archaeology (CPAMS) was started at the end of 2010 and is currently made up of four founding members and an associate researcher. We intend to form a multidisciplinary team although at present we are still only archaeologists. The aim of the CPAMS is to promote scientific archaeological research in underwater maritime environments, rivers and lakes, their interaction areas on land as well as the impact that the maritime landscape has on society’s development over time. We seek to disseminate information on, protect, preserve, and conserve our natural and archaeological heritage that is distributed over the 2250km of the Pacific coastline, rivers, coastal and highland lakes and make it valued, by way of organizing educational programs for archaeologists as well as workshops on social development and awareness.
The importance of maritime and underwater archaeology in Peru lies in the extraordinary state of preservation of the materials which allows access to information not previously recorded (in the case of pre-Hispanic findings) as well as by contrasting findings with written sources. (Colonial and Republican era) Read the rest of this entry ?
I was fortunate enough to attend a UNESCO regional meeting on Underwater Cultural Heritage held in the magnificent Istanbul Archaeology Museum in October 2010. Of the eighteen nations from the Eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea region that were formally represented, no less than fourteen (or nearly 80%) have ratified the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage (2001). Another part of the world where there has been a very significant level of ratification has been Latin America and the Caribbean and one really important consequence of this has been the decline in official, state-supported, treasure hunting activities in these areas. On the other hand there are large areas of the world where very few countries have ratified the Convention – Northern Europe, sub-Saharan Africa and, sadly, my own region in Asia and the Pacific. Of the forty-eight nations included in the UNESCO region of Asia and the Pacific, for example, only two countries have ratified the Convention – Cambodia and Iran (or less than 5% of the countries in the region). There are, of course, many complex geo-political reasons why individual nations, or indeed whole regions, have failed to ratify this Convention in the nearly ten years since it was passed by UNESCO in late 2001. Some countries (like Australia) make much of the difficulties associated with federal nations trying to bring state and federal legislation into line with the provisions of the Convention and other countries claim to have issues with sovereignty and flagged vessels. I remain unconvinced by this kind of rhetoric and suspect that many countries are simply unwilling to expend funds in what is seen to be a relatively ‘unimportant’ area. Read the rest of this entry ?
Anyone interested in the North American fur trade during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries is certainly familiar with the important role played by the birchbark canoe. Its light weight and cargo capacity allowed fur traders to take advantage of a network of lakes, rivers, and streams that nearly crossed the continent. Yet these vessels, so important to the colonial economies of New France and British America, were constructed from natural materials like spruce roots, cedar, pine resins, and of course tree bark so it is little wonder that they rarely survive in the archaeological record.
Fortunately the building tradition was not lost over time. Books such as The Bark Canoes and Skin Boats of North America by Edwin Tappan Adney and Howard Chappelle, documented the materials and building techniques used for several canoe varieties. The following video shows Mr. Francois Rothan building a birchbark canoe in Quebec in 2007. While a few modern tools are used the basic steps shown are very similar to those used centuries ago.
The MUA would like to thank Mr. Rothan for sharing this video with us.
You can learn more about Mr. Rothan and see other examples of his work at http://birchbarkcanoes.blogspot.com/
United By Water: Exploring American History through the Shipwrecks and Maritime Landscapes of the Great LakesFebruary 16, 2011
Funded NEH Opportunity at Thunder Bay for July 2011.
APPLICATION DEADLINE MARCH 1!
Many people in the marine archaeology/maritime heritage community teach—often this is a part-time element in our frequently complicated and unconventional careers. For those who have teaching and academic service connections to community colleges, the National Endowment for the Humanities has funded a unique opportunity to integrate underwater archaeology, maritime heritage, and associated fields into the college classroom.
Developed in partnership with the Alpena Community College, the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and the Sea Education Association, United By Water: Exploring American History through the Shipwrecks and Maritime Landscapes of the Great Lakes consists of a focused week-long workshop that covers a wide range of hands on and scholarly activities all geared toward integrating maritime historical perspectives into community college courses. Two sessions are offered during the last two weeks of July 2011. Successful applicants will receive a $1200 stipend to help defray expenses. Local housing is available at quite reasonable rates.
For those interested in the intersections between education, heritage, and archaeology, this workshop offers an opportunity to engage with shipwrecks and cutting-edge interpretive resources and programs at the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
The attached flyer describes the program and application process in more detail. The March 1 deadline is approaching quickly! (download the PDF )
For additional information please visit our the project website at www.alpenacc.edu/shipwrecks or contact either of the Co-directors: Cathy Green, email email@example.com or Dr. John Jensen, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Google recently announced a new online initiative called “Art Project” in
which they partnered with 17 art museums around the world and placed high
resolution images online for the public to explore. Each piece includes
viewing notes (click the <<i symbol), information about the artist, and
links to more images by the artist across museums. In addition the
website allows viewers to create their own collection of images selected
from any of the museums.
The MUA has taken advantage of that feature and created a collection
within the Google Art Project of the 41 maritime related images we found
across all 17 museums. We will update the MUA gallery whenever new
museums are added to the project . We invite you to explore this virtual
maritime art museum by clicking on the link on our home page at:
Throughout a thirty-year career in maritime archaeology, a particular hobby-horse of mine has been an element of good practice management that involves jointly sharing heritage responsibilities, as well as benefits and outcomes.
At a basic level, I think that much maritime and underwater heritage is inherently multi-national, a fundamental property opens up great opportunities for co-operative investigation and use, overriding present day boundaries. It is derived from mobile carriers (ships and boats) travelling between many locations, involving and impacting on many lives, gathering stories so that a rich heritage resource can be re-told now and in the future.
The contributory elements that make up sites that result from this activity can be investigated and presented for education, research and amenity. Making all this happen effectively would seem to be best delivered by a managed contribution from all interested parties, requiring sharing various elements at a range of levels – experience, expertise, knowledge, data, and international, national, and local. It also needs to be effective because archaeological resources are unique, no two sites are the same, and any investigation should be carefully planned so that the maximum of beneficial return is gained with the minimum of impact. This is the joint responsibility bit because the archaeological heritage is a legacy from the past for the future. I hope to show a few examples of what I mean here.
The Corpus Christi Museum and the Texas Historical Commission are doing
a re-inventory of the La Belle collection over the next year or so.
Every Friday, They will post another entry about the ongoing work or
about artifacts from the (enormous) collection.
You can view their site here:
Founded in 1973, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology is in its 37th year of operation in 2010, and we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first scientific archaeological excavation of a shipwreck under water at Cape Gelidonya. When journalist/adventurer Peter Throckmorton arrived in Bodrum in the spring of 1958 to write about Turkish sponge divers, he learned of many ancient wrecks as he gained the divers’ confidence. Throckmorton visited many of them, diving on what he later said were up to a hundred wrecks. He also visited an underwater excavation off Albenga, Italy, where six divers worked on a Roman wreck, supervised by archaeologists who remained on the deck and did not dive. Important discoveries were being made elsewhere in the Mediterranean, and in the U.S., and pioneering explorers interested in archaeological discovery were diving, but no one had completely excavated a shipwreck under water. Read the rest of this entry ?
When the MUA “opened” its virtual doors in 2004 our mission was to encourage underwater archaeologists to share their research with the general public and with each other via the Internet. It was difficult to find that first organization that was willing to post with us. We were untested and honestly, pretty inexperienced both in public outreach and web design and coding but we believed in the mission. John W. Morris III, (the first director of LAMP in St. Augustine, FL) took a chance and approached us about using research on the 1764 British sloop Industry for our first exhibit. For that, we will always be grateful. Since then the MUA has grown to include nearly 300 pages of content written by over 70 professional, student, and avocational underwater archaeologists from around the world. We are very fortunate that LAMP’s current director, Chuck Meide, still believes in our mission and has worked with us to update the original exhibit with new images, slide shows, zoomviews, and text. The rather dated look and feel of the original post has been replaced with a new design which we hope does an even better job of telling Industry’s story.
We invite you to view the newly revised British sloop Industry exhibit at the MUA here: http://www.themua.org/exhibit_industry