Top 5 discoveries/finds in underwater archaeology
My sort of American list:
1) The “Defence”. The ship, scuttled in Maine to avoid capture by the British Navy, helped redefine the TPQ (date after which) pearlware ceramics were manufactured (putting the date before the American Revolution or one of the causes of it) used in dating terrestrial deposits, from an 1800 date to 1774 (with two other tightly dated sites, one Pluckemin, NJ). It was dove on by underwater archaeologists who also worked on the “Ronson” ship excavated from 1730’s fill in Manhattan, NY which my coworker and I with a backhoe operator uncovered in the last “deep test” allowed.
2) The Swedish “Vasa” for obvious reasons, that is public display and publications.
3) The British “R.M.S. Titanic” for somewhat obvious reasons (a puzzle with EDO relations still has me wondering about the public accounting of the finding).
4) The German “Wilhelm Gustloff” named after an assassinated Swiss Nazi, murdered at home. It was sunk in January 1945 by the Russian submarine “S-13” the largest loss of life from sinking in modern history. Recently written about by author Gunter Grass, it is online rumored to have had the “Amber Room” perhaps recovered and exhibited as the “recreated” Amber Room by Russian art conservationists.
5) The recent recovery of the “dumping” of the “U.S.S. Maine” off the Cuban coast. It was excavated in the Havana, Cuba harbor by the U.S. Admiralty, which in one of its opinions stated that it may have been the result of a coal bunker fire, by one of its admirals, reviewed in “Scientific American” and researched recently by an independent materials scientist, and reported on the “Discovery Channel”(?) Due to “yellow journalism” the “Remember the Maine” call to war was promulgated to prod the U.S. into war, especially after the crisis of President McKinley’s assassination in Buffalo, NY and the rise of Theodore Roosevelt to President, himself once shot at a speech, and went on to finish his talk. The first White House Press Secretary also resulted over it, Cabinet member George B. Cortelyou, invited the press into the White House for the first time.