Sunteți pe pagina 1din 25

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Australasian Institute for

Maritime Archaeology Inc


Volume 26, Number 3

September 2007
ABN 37 830 874 307
Registration No. A0820044J Western Australia Associations Incorporations Act 1987 Section 18(6)

Maritime Archaeology in India: impressions from an

August Visit
In August last, your correspondent was fortuitous in
being able to attend at his own expense, though with four
days official leave, the International Seminar on Marine
Archaeology (ISMA 2007) hosted by the Indian Navy
(INS) and the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) both
administratively based in Delhi. From there stop was
made in Goa to visit the Marine Archaeology Centre at
the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) at Dona
Paula. This has resulted in a number of personal
observations about the state of the discipline in India that
might prove of interest to AIMA’s practitioners, teachers
and students and also to cultural heritage managers

As one would expect, India is extremely rich in its

cultural heritage on land and at sea. It is also very
productive in its archaeology and management programs
and very well placed to become a real powerhouse of
maritime archaeology in this new century—if it is not that already. As one would expect
there are strong links with our colleagues operating in the Arabian Sea, the Gulfs and in the
northern Indian Ocean region generally. The proximity of the two Indian units (ASI &
NIO) in both geographic and philosophical terms to the Sri Lankan unit in Galle, with its
ongoing internationally-supported maritime archeological programs renders the entire
north Indian Ocean region a place for AIMA and its members to look towards both
personal and professional development. Certainly there is much for AIMA members to
learn and a lot to gain from considering a visit when the next round of conferences is
announced (continued on page #14).


AIMA News 2 Australasian News 4

Around the World 18 Position Announcements 19
Forthcoming Conferences 20 New Books 21

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 1 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

President’s Report
Portuguese iron steel and steam shipwrecks: At the kind invitation of local Peniche divers
Luis and Suzana Fonseca, John Riley and Ross Anderson travelled to Portugal to participate
in the inaugural workshop ‘Registo de navios a vapor em ferros submersos’ (Recording steam
and iron ships underwater) held at the Club Navale Peniche between 30 June and 5 July. This
workshop had been preceded by a workshop in recording ship’s lines and archaeological
drawing conducted by archaeologist Maria-Luisa Blot to better prepare the students in
underwater recording methods.

Participants were: Luis Fonseca, Susana Maia, Luis Dias, Pedro Caleja, Joel Machado,
Francisco Xavier, Jose Ferreira, Cliff Oliveira, Paulo Costa, Rui Venâncio and Jorge Russo.

Activities included diving on iron, steel and steam shipwrecks wrecked around the Berlenga
Islands, a unique cluster of islands once part of the same landmass as Canada. The Berlengas
offer the only protected offshore anchorage off the coast of Portugal that has been used since
ancient times, as attested to by stone anchors and Roman lead anchor stocks still in the
anchorage. The islands’ short distance from the fishing and tourist town of Peniche, their
natural and historic features such as the old monastery site and 17th century fort, shipwrecks
and usually clear waters make them a holiday destination for divers over the Portuguese
summer. The main wrecks dived were the SS Primavera (22m depth) and SS Andrios (26.5m

Classroom presentations on Australian iron, steel and steam shipwreck sites, maritime
archaeology and management were combined with the practical diving and site recording to
give participants skills to identify features and record large, broken up sites. Following World
War II most of the large iron steel and steam wrecks around the Berlenga Islands became an
integral part of Peniche’s economy as four companies based themselves in the town and used
helmet divers to salvage the wrecks (generally in 20-30m) for their scrap metal.

Portugal has a number of significant iron, steel and steam shipwrecks including the famous
composite clipper Thermopylae (renamed Pedro Nunas and torpedoed as part of a torpedo boat
exercise in 1907) in 30m at Cascais near Lisbon; the early paddle steamer PS Tiber (1846-47) in
34m off Porto; Portugal’s earliest steam shipwreck the PS Paquete Lusitano (originally the Earl
of Parmella built by Moltershead & Hays, Liverpool that arrived in Lisbon 1822) wrecked in
the surf zone near Torres Vedras and similar to the PS Clonmel (1836-1841) wrecked in
Victoria, Australia. The Paquete Lusitano’s replacement the Restaurador Lusitano (originally the
St. Patrick also built by the same company in 1822) later sank off Aveiro, location not known.
Warship wrecks include the first armoured warship to cross the Atlantic Ocean the Spanish
ironclad Numancia which lies in 4m off Lisbon where it has been extensively salvaged. The U-
1277 lies in 30m off Oporto with bow broken off and full of sand. Deep sites include the
World War I aircraft carriers HMS Audacity and HMS Avenger torpedoed by U-boats in
2000m, and the French dreadnought Suffren torpedoed by a U-boat and sunk with all 700
hands lost, also in 2000m. The Suffren was the worst French naval disaster of World War I.

One of the wrecks not dived due to weather conditions but a focus of the workshop was the
SS Dago. The Dago was a British merchant steamer sunk by North African based Luftwaffe
Condor long range bombers in 1942 while steaming in neutral Portuguese waters, and now

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 2 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

lies in 50m near Peniche. The depth and a similar size and age wreck nearby makes the Dago a
challenging recording and identification exercise.

While visiting Portugal other sites of maritime interest visited included Nazaré Museum with
lots of fishing and folk history and historic wooden fishing vessels, a chapel dedicated to the
first salvage diver in Peniche who worked on the wreck of the Spanish galleon San Pedro de
Alcantara, Portugal’s maritime archaeological workshops and conservation laboratory at the
Centro Nacional Archaeologica Nautica y Subaquatica (CNANS), and the historic port cities
of Lisbon and Porto.

On 9 July public lectures were given inside the amazing landmark of the Padrao
Descobrimientos (Monument to the Discoveries) at Belém, Lisbon on maritime archaeology
in Australia, iron and steam shipwreck recording and technical diving, the wreck and recent
discovery of the Correio da Azia (1815), the first known Portuguese wreck in Australian waters,
and organiser Luis Fonseca gave a presentation on the course and its results.

Riley and Ross thank Luis Fonseca and Susana Maia, Jean Yves and Maria Luisa Blot and all
of the course participants for their kind hospitality and interest, as well as all of the other
sponsors and organisers including Club Navale Peniche, City of Peniche and Planetad Agua
dive magazine. We hope that the workshop will assist in the recording of Portugal’s more
recent, and rich shipwreck history.
Ross Anderson

Secretary’s Report
Membership renewal for 2007-8 financial year: Over 150 membership renewals for the
current financial year including new subscriptions and renewal of previous members have
been received. Membership renewals are still being sent to the Secretary. For those of you
who have not yet renewed, we would like to invite you to do so. Thanks to all those who have
sent in your renewals and once again, thanks to all members for their support of AIMA for
the 2006-7 year.

Mail out of Bulletin Vol. 31: Bulletin vol. 31 was sent to all 2006-7 financial members on 14
September. If you have not received your copy, please contact the Secretary. Thanks once
again to Sue Cox for dealing with the main organization of the entire mail out.

2007 Conference and AGM: Several AIMA Executive, councillors and members will be
attending the upcoming conference and AGM in Sydney and, therefore, will be away the last
2 weeks of September. Members who will be at the conference are encouraged to attend the
AIMA AGM. The Minutes from this AGM will be prepared by the Secretary and published in
the vol. 4 Newsletter at the end of 2007.

Update your contact details with AIMA!: Members are reminded to inform the Secretary
of any change in contact details so that the Membership database can be updated for the
purposes of mail outs and updating of the electronic Discussion List. Some correspondences
were returned in a recent mail out of AGM notices and some of these members are no longer
contactable by any means.

Administrative Officer job vacancy: AIMA’s current Administrative Officer will be

finishing her contract on 30 November 2007 and as such the position will be vacant again.
Applications for the job will be opened from Monday 22 October – Monday 5 November
2007. Further information about the job is included in this issue of the newsletter. If you have

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 3 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

any further queries about the job, please contact the AIMA Secretary at the WA Museum. If
you wish to apply for the job, please contact the Secretary for a copy of the brief and job
Jennifer Rodrigues

Heritage Conservation Services, Northern Territory Government
Heritage listing of Aboriginal stone arrangements depicting Macassan and Aboriginal material
culture. In July 2007 the Wurrwurrwuy stone pictures, located in east Arnhem Land, were
declared a heritage place under the NT Heritage Conservation Act. This came after successful
consultation with the traditional owners assisted by the Dhimurru Land Management
Aboriginal Corporation. The site is also a registered sacred site under the Northern Territory
Aboriginal Sacred Sites Act. The Statement for Heritage Value is as follows:

The stone arrangements or ‘pictures’ at Wurrwurrwuy in north east Arnhem Land depict aspects of Macassan
material culture, including sailing vessels and dwellings. Aspects of Yolngu Aboriginal culture are also depicted
at Wurrwurrwuy. These stone pictures outline a record of economic and social contact between the Yolngu and
Macassans that continued for several centuries. Seafarers from Macassar in Sulawesi came annually for
trepang (dharripa), pearl and turtle shells. Wurrwurrwuy is an important tangible reminder to the Yolngu of
their past connections with the Macassans. Wurrwurrwuy is the most complex and well preserved example of
three known stone picture sites. This site type is unique to the north east Arnhem region of the Northern

Stone feature depiction of Macassan prau in cross section.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 4 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Heritage listing of C-47 plane wreck. A65-115, a C-47 plane wreck located in Darwin Harbour
was recently declared a protected historic wreck under the NT Heritage Conservation Act. The
discovery of the wreck was discussed in AIMA Newsletter 26.1. During a test flight, in
preparation for a long haul to occupied Japan, A65-115 was deliberately downed in waters
close to Darwin on the 5 September 1946.

HCS has been mapping the wreck and it’s certainly a case of the more you look the more you
see. The plane is sitting upright in approximately 22 metres of water. The original outline of
the plane can be seen quite easily.

Deliberately downed after a fire started in the starboard engine the plane was on fire for a few
minutes on the surface of the water before it sunk. The fire had likely burnt away much of the
roof and upper sections of the fuselage (the waterline). The lower fuselage remains intact and
this provides the plane’s outline.

The floor of the cockpit and fuselage are buried in the sand however emerging from the sand
are a variety of significant features such as the pilot’s control column, control pedals,
instrument panels, the radio set and an empty life raft canister.

High frequency radio set.

The most dramatic features of the wreck are the intact port wing and the rear section. The
port wing sits proud off the seabed with the tip metres above the sand. The port engine and
propeller are still remarkably intact. The starboard wing has come free from the fuselage
flipped upside down and now sits partly back under the fuselage. This has resulted in some
interesting discussions about site formation.

The rear compartment is near complete with the doorway leading to an enclosed space that
still houses a wash basin. The tail is still intact and rises three metres above the seabed,

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 5 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

however its rudder is gone. The distinctive C-47 rudder assembly was one of the key wreck
features that helped identify the plane. The port stabiliser is intact but the starboard one has
been torn away.

HCS visited a fully operational C-47, call sign VH-MMA, at Hardy’s Aviation in Darwin to
learn more about the design of these planes. This has helped to better understand the wreck
of A65-115. VH-MMA was built in 1945 and has undergone only minor changes.

The majestic VH-MMA, visited to better understand the A65-115 wreck.

A mooring buoy will be installed on A65-115 by the end of September 2007. This will
facilitate visitation and hopefully minimise boat anchor damage. A complete site plan of the
wreck will be provided to the public also showing the location of moveable artefacts.
Providing the location of moveable objects is based on the appreciation that these items will
be discovered again and again by waves of visitors.

Providing this information initially, as a part of interpretation, will increase the divers’
understanding of the wreck and emphasise that these items are known, recorded and part of a
managed heritage place.

A survey by NT Government marine biologists has concluded that the site is not of natural
significance, therefore recreational fishing is permitted.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 6 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

The rear of VH-MMA with inset border showing what remains on A65-115 today. The small
hatch being opened is a post-war addition.
David Steinberg

Flinders University
Overseas Practicum: For two
weeks in July the Lighthouse
Archaeological Maritime Program
(LAMP) in St. Augustine Florida,
USA hosted Flinders University’s
first overseas Practicum in
Maritime Archaeology. The
practicum was a huge success and
accomplished what it set out to do
– to enhance the experiences and
knowledge of our graduate students
while providing research support
for the Lighthouse program.
Participants in the practicum
Kenny Keeping, Nathan Richards, Deanna
Sundling and Emily Jateff on the water.
• eight students from Australia, Canada, the UK and the US;
• five visiting students (Florida State University and University of West Florida);

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 7 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

• two Flinders teaching staff;

• three Flinders supervisors;
• three LAMP staff and countless volunteers; and
• ten agencies and companies: the Museum of Underwater Archaeology, St. Johns
County, Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, Southeastern
Archaeological Research, Inc., Florida Public Archaeology Network, University of Florida,
Division of Historical Resources, Marine Magnetics, East Carolina University, and H.L.
Hunley Project).

A total of 12 days were spent in the field collecting data and 89 dives were conducted for a
total of over 50 hours spent underwater. To check out what students and staff had to say
about the field work, see the LAMP blog:

Ships!: Graduate students in the Maritime

Archaeology Program had little rest over
their mid-semester break as they were
participating in an intensive 7-day topic
called Ships: Research, Recording and
Reconstruction. This is a new topic on
offer and provides students with the
theoretical and practical training necessary
for researching ships and ship construction.
Students practiced taking ship lines using
conventional methods (tapes and pencils)
and digital methods (total station and
Peter, Andy, Agnes, Matt and Cass measuring the
load waterline. Whew!
The historic Armfield Slipway
in Goolwa kindly loaned a
small vessel Tom Jones for the
ship lines recording session.
This boat was carried into a
large classroom where
students were able to set up
the recording process. The
name of the vessel elicited
quite a few poorly executed
versions of “What’s New
Pussycat?” and “It’s Not
Unusual”…. Besides brushing
up on their Tom Jones
discography, students and
Wendy demonstrating taking lines using the total station.
staff learned a valuable lesson
which is “technology can be
difficult and sometime tapes and pencils are the most reliable method”.

Students also sat in on lectures such as: Outfitting a ship; Hull analysis: tonnage,
displacement, performance; Wood sampling ships; and Reassembly and display. Guest
lecturers included Katie Sikes from the College of William & Mary, Virginia, USA and Wendy
Van Duivenvoorde from the Western Australia Maritime Museum and Texas A&M, College
Station, USA.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 8 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Field trips were taken to the South Australia Maritime

Museum for lectures on Vernacular construction and South
Australian ketches given by Kevin Jones (museum director)
and Rigging and sails given by Don Lucas, a traditional sail
maker, who incidentally is quite famous in the US. A second
trip was taken to the Searles Boatyard at Pt. Adelaide where
Kingsley Haskett talked about the history of wooden
boatbuilding at Searles Boatyard (over 75 years at the port)
and toured the students around the yard.

The class was challenging, demanding and very hands-on

with students spending 9 am to 5pm in lectures and seminars
and their evenings in the lab drafting ship lines. The crunch
to get projects handed in forced some to spend the night in
the archaeology lab! It was a tough week for those teaching
and taking the class but we all had a great time and learned a
Jennifer McKinnon
Agnes tracing a ship timber.

Maritime Archaeology Field School: The Maritime Archaeology Program at Flinders

University runs an annual Maritime Archaeology Field School that fulfils most of the
requirements for Part 3 of the AIMA/NAS training program. Ordinarily the Field School has
only been available to enrolled students at Flinders, another Australian or overseas university.

We are seeking expressions of interest from AIMA members and other interested people in
making places available to non-students as a short course. For anyone who already holds
AIMA/NAS part 1 the costs involved would be $1,750 for tuition and a $600 fee for
accommodation, transport and SCUBA tank fills. The Maritime Archaeology Field School
runs in the first two weeks of February each year and in 2008 will be at Portarlington in

Anyone interested in participating or discussing possible Part 3 training in the future should

Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
Maritime history has been heavily promoted in Hobart through public events and talks. As
part of the National Archives public lecture series, local historians were informed of the
maritime history resources at the National Archives, Maritime Museum of Tasmania and
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery. I was asked by a Rotary group to give a talk on the
maritime history of Tasmania - in 20 mins! I talked REALLY fast! ‘Rusty wrecks recovered’
was an interactive display created for science week promoting the scientific aspects of
conservation and shipwreck archaeology in maritime heritage. The interactive adventures
continued in the September school holiday program on shipwrecks. Children drew shipwreck
artefacts and enthusiastically re-enacted the wrecking of ‘Sydney Cove’ (1797) and ‘Blythe
Star’ (1973).

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 9 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Redevelopment at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery continues, with the museum
grounds dotted by test pits containing stone walls, historic glass and ceramic and a sandstone
pier wall.

Not quite on the same scale is the Maritime museum’s upgrade of exhibitions. The ‘Silver
Crown’ wheelhouse has had an interesting life. It sheltered many a skipper during 45 years as
part of the successful Derwent river ferry. It was then used as a chicken shed but will soon be
restored to take pride of place in the museum’s galleries. The project was discussed on ABC
local radio to attract volunteers with handyman skills to assist with the restoration.

One of the highlights of the past few months was the first meeting of the reformed Maritime
Heritage Organisations of Tasmania. It took place at the Queen Victoria Museum in
Launceston on 10th August. The 25 attendees represented 18 of 31 interested maritime
organisations in Tasmania. The meeting was a good opportunity for connections to be
formed and renewed. It was a successful start to a supportive network with many group
projects and a maritime heritage ‘voyage’ planned.
Peta Knott

Heritage Victoria
Shipwreck Database development: The upgrade of the shipwreck database is almost
complete, allowing Hermes users both within Heritage Victoria and some local government
agencies to view shipwreck data alongside Victorian Heritage Register and Heritage Inventory

The upgrade has also provided a suitable opportunity for a review of the data held on
shipwreck sites within the database, and with a grant from the Commonwealth have started
the process of improving the quality of the shipwreck data. Historical information and site
inspection information will be included in the database, along with GPS checked positional

Victorian Heritage Database Online: The Victorian Heritage Register Online is currently
being redesigned to provide more modern and clearer search and results screen, and include
all the local government places now included in Hermes. The new VHD online is still in
development and is due online in November. The new VHD will include shipwreck sites, and
will include shipwreck specific search facilities. As the data enhancement work is likely to
continue after this release date, you will see a gradual improvement in the quality, and
quantity, of data for sites in rough alphabetical order.

Maritime Infrastructure Assessment Project: The Historic Shipwrecks Advisory

Committee (HSAC) has been awarded $10,000 to complete data input of information
collected during the MIAP Project into the Hermes (incorporating VHR, Heritage Inventory
& Shipwrecks). All sites identified during the MIAP project will have an entry and statement
of significance.

The Maritime Infrastructure Thematic History undertaken by Jill Barnard is currently in the
last phases of tweaking ready for publication. This research was undertaken as the first stage
of the Maritime Infrastructure project in 2003, laying the ground work for significance
assessments for sites identified later through historical research and field assessments. The
report will be published jointly by Heritage Victoria and Heritage Council of Victoria.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 10 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Shipwrecks and Aircraft: In July, the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and
Water Resources declared a Protected Zone of 500m around the site of the SS Alert under the
provisions of the Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976. The SS Alert was discovered by Southern Ocean
Exploration (SOE) in June 2007.

In July, MHU were invited to join a group of divers to attend a memorial service at the wreck
site of two British Fairey Fireflies which collided and sank in Port Phillip Bay in 1947. The
memorial was attended by surviving members of family, and crew on board the support
vessels at the time of the crash. TV crews were on site making a documentary about the
aircraft. The site is protected under the Victorian Heritage Act 1995 as an archaeological site.

Port of Melbourne Corporation have identified a metal barge in the Maribyrnong River as a
navigational hazard and identified it for removal. The PoMC have commissioned historical
research which suggests that the barge appeared on the river bank sometime between 1968
and1970. Although the site is not of historical or archaeological significance, HV staff
requested that it be surveyed prior to removal. The site lies on the banks of the river and is
accessible on foot at low tide; it was therefore identified as an appropriate site for an
AIMA/NAS part II project, which HV staff could supervise. Unfortunately none of the
students could attend, and Hanna, Cass and regular volunteer Don Love spent a lovely sunny
morning surveying the site themselves!

Sunken Assets Seminar 19 August 2007-06-15: The Sunken Assets Seminar, organised
jointly by SCUBA Diver’s Federation of Victoria, the Maritime Archaeology Association of
Victoria, the Diving Industry Victoria Association, Historic Shipwrecks Advisory Committee
and MHU took place on Sunday 19th August. The event was hugely successful with a great
range of interesting speakers from across the country.

The Chair of the Victorian Heritage Council, Chris Gallagher and the Parliamentary Secretary
for Planning Jenny Mikakos MP presented 15 shipwreck finders awards and 12 certificates of
recognition for the discovery of 18 shipwrecks in Victoria.

Peter Harvey also presented the volunteers who assisted with the City of Launceston Trial
Access Program with Certificates of Recognition on behalf of Heritage Victoria and the
Victorian Government.

Outreach and Education work: MHU have been joined over the winter by a couple of
work experience students from Melbourne schools, both of which have been involved in a
range of tasks both in the office and the field. The students have assisted with historical
research, planning for Sunken Assets and Corinne Kruger was lucky enough to coincide with
an inspection dive on the HMVS Cerberus Guns and the memorial at the Fairey Firefly site.

We also have funding in place – and work galore – for the appointment of a student intern
for three months starting in November. The placement was organised with Flinders
University, and has been awarded to Agnes Milowka.

As I write, Cass is in Adelaide buried under a large pile of reading (hopefully!) part of an
intensive course in Ship research, recording and reconstruction at Flinders University. Peter
spent a morning teaching archaeology students at La Trobe University and we’ve all been
working away at our papers for presentation at the AIMA conference in Sydney.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 11 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Upcoming Fieldwork: We have a few excursions planned for the summer including a field
school with Flinders University students in February at Portarlington and wreck inspections
at Port Fairy. The Flinders field school is likely to include wreck inspections in Port Phillip
Bay and a small excavation at the Clifton Springs jetty site.
Hanna Steyne

Maritime Archaeological Association of Victoria

Divers Malcolm Venturoni, James Parkinson, John Osmond, Mick Whitmore and Mark Ryan
recently visited the SS Queensland, located in 60 metres of water, some miles off Wilson’s
Promontory. The aim of the visit was to gain more information to complete the site sketch
and model; James has taken on the task of drawing the site sketch. This was James’ second
visit to the site, with slate in hand, features were observed with notes and sketches taken. He
now has an overall idea of the layout and deconstruction of the wreck. John Osmond, had
constructed a cardboard model of the site, as per the John Riley process, however, not
satisfied with his first effort, John is planing a second model. John is busy munching his way
through as many breakfast cereals as possible.

Work is continuing on the Alert site, at 80 metres to the bottom, the dive is only for the very
experienced tri-mix diver. On this dive, Mark had a number of tasks to achieve; number one
priority for this dive was to inspect the propeller aperture. On Mark’s first visit to the site he
noticed that there did not appear to be a propeller. The propeller boss is still in place, but the
blades appear to be missing. This new information might shoot holes in the pantry window
theory (a court case took place, some time after where two widows sued the company, the
argument being that a pantry window put in by the ship-owners broke during a storm, causing
it to founder).

The stern of the Alert - photo Mick Whitmore.

The damaged propeller might help explain a cause to the foundering, as the lone survivor
stated that the steamer couldn’t make any headway against the waves.

The wreck diving seminar, ‘Sunken Assets’ recently took place at RMIT, the event was well
attended by divers and those with an interest in maritime history. A day of lectures took place
with presenters; Dr Ian McLeod, Mark Ryan and Andy Viduka to name a few presenting
papers on a variety of wreck related subjects. Heritage Victoria presented ‘Shipwreck Finders’

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 12 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

awards, with a number of MAAV and SOE members receiving awards for reporting wreck
sites around Victoria. Many thanks to the organisers, SDFV, MAAV, RMIT Underwater
Club, Heritage Council and Heritage Victoria for putting on such a great event.

Survey work is being conducted on the SHB Batman; this vessel is of considerable interest as it
formed part of the Victorian Navy in the 19th century. With the perceived threat of a Russian
invasion in the 1880’s, the Batman, and its sister-ship, Fawkner, steam hopper barges with the
Melbourne Harbour Trust had conversions made to them in Melbourne to enable them to
take a 6-inch gun, magazine, shell room and protective plating in the bow.

Diver swimming over gun mount – photo John Corby.

The Batman and the Fawkner, auxiliaries in the Victorian Navy are the only known surviving
examples of these colonial conversions. The objective of the dive was to locate and record
any remaining features that would link the site to the Victorian Navy.

The Batman is located in 45 metres of water in the Ships’ Graveyard and was scuttled there in
1935. Two survey teams dived the site and recorded the position and dimensions of the gun
mount and support stanchions in the bow area. This dive also proved that this is the wreck of
the Batman or the Fawkner (they were sunk close by each other in 1935), more work needs to
be done on the sites to determine their respective identities.

The corrosion project continues with more sash weights being cleaned and weighed, ready for
placement on the seabed. The northern end of Port Phillip has a project going, the City of
Launceston, in the middle of Port Phillip has weights on it, and at the southern end of the Bay,
the Goorangai has weights placed on it. The eastern side of the Bay is the next objective.
Peter Taylor

Western Australian Maritime Museum
International Seminar on Marine Archaeology (ISMA 2007): (continued from page 1)
Organized jointly by Dr Alok Tripathi Superintending Archaeologist of the
Underwater Archaeology Wing, Archaeological Survey of India

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 13 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

and Captain Arvind Singh, Principal Director of Special Operations and Diving, Ministry of
Defence (Navy), the two day conference was a great success.

At one stage a quick head count indicated there were over 200 navy officers in attendance,
with serving and retired Commodores, Rear and Vice Admirals, and Admirals majestically
occupying the rows of plush seats in the front row adjacent the speakers. It was an
extraordinary show of force and commitment to the maritime heritage by the INS—it has 155
ships in the fleet—all topped off by an address by Admiral Sureesh Mehta Chief of Naval
staff. He was both celebrating India’s maritime traditions and warning against allowing its
maritime strength to ever again be allowed to diminish as it once did to the benefit of
colonizers and usurpers of all types. Mrs Anshu Vaish the new Head of the Archaeological
Survey then took the floor introducing herself and her institution’s vast range of
responsibilities and programs to those previously unaware. Around 100 archaeologists,
historians, students and enthusiasts were also present to hear the introduction and the release
of the proceedings from the ISMA 2005 conference.

Expat university professors Gregory Possehl and Mark Kenoyer, both well known for their
extensive archaeological and anthropological contributions in India, opened proceedings by
examining eons-old maritime activity in the Arabian sea and the marine and riverine trade of
the Indus cities. Their exposition of the activities of late interlopers like the Romans and
Greeks also helped ‘fix’ events for those more acquainted with European chronologies. Shri
Sundaresh of NIO and Captain Singh introduced the diverse maritime archaeological—
ranging from the Harappan period to the steam era—and often high tech survey and diving
operations on the west coast of India, respectively. The focal point of public interest across
India is clearly the remains at Dwarka near Jamnagar in Gujerat State. As explained by Alok
Tripathi, Dwarka, has become the unequivocal attestation of the importance of underwater
archaeology to much of India and at least a 800 million of its people. It is one of India’s most
ancient and to the Hindu’s it’s most important cities, the ancient home of Lord Krishna, a
place submerged a total of six times.

An account produced in the Hindu epic Mahabharata by one of India’s legendary heroes

The sea rushed into the city. It coursed through the streets of the beautiful city. The sea covered up everything in
the city. I saw the beautiful buildings becoming submerged one by one. In a matter of a few moments it was all
over. The sea had now become as placid as a lake. There was no trace of the city. Dwaraka was just a name;
just a memory.

From Dwarka it was then one paper after another attesting to the study of a vast range of
seaports, submerged structures, Greek trading routes (ex the Periplus Maris Erytharaei), ship
and boat types, notably the Dhow and iconography. Related inland trade routes and the
archaeology of the Maldives, the Gulf of Eilat and the Red Sea also featured. These was even
an examination of the relatively-modern links India once had with the Roman and Byzantine
Empires and the effect of visiting mariners of the later periods, like the famous Cheng Ho
(the latter by Sarah Ward of NAS fame). The potential complexity of any ancient Indian site
was no better illustrated than in a lecture on the Pattanam excavations on the Malabar coast
by Prof PJ Cherian. His abstract, appearing, with all the others in a beautifully-illustrated
booklet that contained also a picture of each presenter and their bio-data reads thus:

The site in all probability a port town or settlement . . . revealed brick architectural remains, Roman amphora
. . . Yemenite and Mesopotamian pottery, green-blue glazed Sassanian and Islamic ceramics . . . [also a]
wharf with bollards and a dugout canoe.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 14 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Discussions on comparative studies, legislation (the signatories to the UNESCO Convention

by Ricardo Favis, a graduate of Philippine universities working out of the UNESCO
Bangkok office), and site management followed. The presentations by the strong Sri Lankan
contingent of Rasika, Gamini, Sanath and Darshani all practitioners personally known to
many AIMA members through their collaborative work under the UNESCO umbrella was
also varied and equally strong, with attention to conservation a feature. With a few exceptions
lacking at the conference, in both attendance and in speakers, was a strong university

Speakers were all presented with a stipend for lecturing, a commemorative wall plaque and
other gifts. All had their conference fees, food and accommodation at the Officers Quarters
(in a former Rajah’s palace) provided gratis. They were also treated to gala ceremonies and an
official naval dinner, with band. Having been personally met at the airport by Petty Officer
Singh and then transported everywhere by equally welcoming naval staff, the only possible
complaint other than the few universities present, was that it was all too short. Time to visit
heritage sites in Delhi was needed as an integral part of the event.

Before leaving for the next stage, a visit was made to Prof Greg Possehl’s pad in the academic
wing of the ‘Defence Colony’ (so named because some Delhi-based defence types purchased
the land some years back and built accommodation on it) to learn of his involvement with
others and some of our AIMA colleagues like Tom Vosmer in the Gulf of Oman. These links
are evidently strong and on-going.

Visit to the Red Fort and the Underwater Archaeology Wing, Archaeological Survey of
India: Together with the latest Lonely Planet, your correspondent had fortuitously selected
William Dalrymple’s, The Last Mughal: The Fall of a Dynasty, Delhi, 1857, as a travel companion
and as a backdrop for a visit to the famous Red Fort, former seat of Bahadur Shah II,
descendant of both Genghis Khan and Timur the Great (Tamerlane). Dalrymple’s is an
important work setting the scene for some understanding of India, past and present and as a
very useful primer to present sectarian tensions across the globe. Fundamental Christianity
comes out particularly badly it needs be observed.

The Red Fort where the Hindu/Muslim/Christian divide became abominably manifest in
1857 is now the base for ASI and theUnderwater Archaeology Wing. Recently added to the
World Heritage List, it is a monumental and fitting home for the Archaeological Survey, an
institution I suspect that has one of the largest, most diverse heritage management portfolios
on the globe. It is made the more difficult by virtue of the annual monsoon, which though
late in coming to Delhi this year, not only serves to cool the land and its people, but also in
the sheer volumes of rain and excessive humidity of each day to hasten the destruction of its
monuments, books and works of art, especially anything organic. In respect of the difficulty
in maintaining libraries in any but a very expensive air conditioned environment it is a hurdle
that India, in being one of the world’s leaders in IT and computing, is readily overcoming by
accessing the growing global electronic maritime archaeological library.

Students being groomed for consideration as the next wave of India’s maritime archaeologists
attended a lecture by this author previously arranged by Alok and then it was off to the
airport escorted by Sundaresh of NIO. Also with us was one of Alok’s students, a very bright
young man (speaker of at least four languages as is common in India), one who is very keen,
well-read and conversant on archaeological theory and its sometimes baffling and esoteric
nuances. The point being made here is that Indian Maritime Archaeology as experienced at
Delhi amongst practitioners and students is theoretically strong, though at present

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 15 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

numerically-weak with Alok needing to recruit despite the technical and underwater support
of the INS. That situation may not last too long given that the unit resides within the
structures of ASI a very powerful, well-regarded and ubiquitous national institution. On the
down side, in reflecting the situation in Australasia generally, the enormous strains on ASI in
both funds and personnel with thousands of terrestrial sites to manage could mitigate against
the Underwater Archaeology Wing growing unless it were able to successfully fight off the
challengers to sparse financial and human resources. With the Indian Navy extremely
supportive, with its powerful political support, equipment and technical expertise (including
vessels and a wide range of remote sensing equipment and diving experience) the unit
presently remains strong and very productive nonetheless.

Maritime Archaeology Centre at the National Institute of Oceanography in Goa:

Before Goa a visit was made to Varanasi (old Benares, the Ghats, a swim in the Ganges),
Jaipur and its famous monuments, including a stunning hilltop fort at Amber, the ancient
capital of Jaipur State. If anything apart from its intrinsic beauty and majesty, Amber Fort, its
winding walls and battlements and the interpretation of its palace, gardens and the Zenana
(women’s quarters) is a pointer to both the enormous challenges and success of the ASI
refurbishment program nationally. For those interested, after Goa it was up to Mumbai
(Bombay) to stay at Colaba, an amazing leafy Victorian-era enclave of imposing civic
buildings lining grassed parks, port structures, old ferries and pleasure boats, a fascinating
lighthouse on a rock offshore, Gandhi’s home, churches, temples (Jain, Hindu and others),
Muslim markets replete with mosques and calling muezzin and finally Victorian-era
monuments, including India Gate, wharf-side buildings and nearby residences—now
appearing as converted tourist (of both Indian and alien type) hotels.

At Old Goa the Portuguese churches, again managed by ASI were all that remained after the
handing back of the colony and the wholesale destruction of the colonial infrastructure a few
decades ago. In marvelling at their size and number, what became immediately apparent in
the pouring rain was the problems had with timber used as flooring, roofing and supports in a
monsoonal environment. The decay and enormous problems with that medium were clearly
evident. ASI clearly have an ongoing and Herculean task and their interpretive signs and
warnings against transgressing their strong heritage acts were ubiquitous and apparently
successful, as were a very relaxed breed of dog, strikingly reminiscent of our dingo.

As with Alok Tripathi in Delhi, the Maritime Archaeology Centre, National Institute of
Oceanography in Goa is home to practitioners whose names are becoming increasingly
familiar to AIMA members through the Bulletin and the IJNA e.g. AS Gaur, Sundaresh and
Sila Tripathi. Not having site management or artefact collection responsibilities, being almost
entirely research-based with a focus on publication, the Maritime Archaeology Centre with its
specialists and technical staff is arguably a perfect foil and supplement to ASI and vice versa.
It is under the supervision of ocean scientist Mr KH Vora who is justifiably very proud of the
unit and its achievements for it has a very mature research program with many underwater
archaeological publications, some with his contribution evident. In being situated amongst a
wide range of oceanographers, I suspect that there are few places across the globe where
archaeology is viewed so positively as a tool supporting geology students of climate change,
meteorology and general oceanography alike. There after a tour of the facilities and a jealous
peek at the display showing the range of NIO activities, equipment and vessels, I was
presented with two works, one edited by SR Rao being 60 papers from the First Indian
Conference of Marine Archaeology of Indian Ocean countries with 12 keynote addresses.
Held in 1987 at Jamnagar in Gujerat State, the work is not only a celebration of the Society
for Marine Archaeology which was founded by Prof. Rao in 1981 but a reflection of the
diversity and strength of maritime archaeology in India 16 years on. Sections include the

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 16 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

problems and challenges of maritime archaeology, shipping and shipwrecks, survey method,
submerged ports and structures, sea level change, marine art, ecology, conservation and
technological advance. The other work edited by AS Gaur and KH Vora was the proceedings
of the 7th Indian Ocean Conference on Marine Archaeology held in Goa at the Institute in
October 2005. While it contains 21 similarly diverse articles, the links between underwater
archaeology, geology, biology and technological advances in ocean science are increasingly
evident and here expertly harvested.

The path to the future: As I see it, maritime archaeology in India presently stands on two
strong and complementary legs: the work and products of the Underwater Archaeology Wing,
Archaeological Survey of India based at the Red Fort in Delhi and the Maritime Archaeology
Centre of the National Institute of Oceanography in Goa. The Indian public generally sees
maritime and underwater archaeology and heritage management generally as relevant,
historically, socially and, very importantly, religiously.

On a technical level equipment, expertise in remote sensing, diving and the other technical
expertise required for high quality, modern maritime and underwater archaeological is readily
available through the Indian Navy and the National Institute of Oceanography respectively.
NIO also provides to maritime archaeology in India a ready source of interdisciplinary
expertise for the oceanographers based there see the discipline providing some fundamental
data for their geological, climatological and general oceanographic studies. The three
institutions (INS/NIO/ASI) have regular conferences and their publications are numerous
and high standard. On a regional level maritime archaeologists in India have good links to
their counterparts in Sri Lanka and those operating in the Arabian Sea and the Gulfs to the
west. This all serves to render the northern Indian ocean region one of the world’s strongest
regional and mutually-supportive forces in the field. As advised earlier, we in AIMA can
increasingly look towards it for learning and research opportunities, with attendance at
regional conferences a worthwhile and rewarding experience. One weakness, other than the
continual wrestle with monsoonal conditions appears, as was once the case in Australia, is a
perceived lack of strong university input. The development of a university-based, third leg to
the discipline would serve to strengthen Indian underwater and maritime archaeology
immeasurably, for if either of the two legs supporting it presently failed, there could be
problems. There is however a real problem for conservation, especially of organics in the
region, no matter how well staffed the units might become, primarily due to the humidity.
Michael McCarthy


Benchmarking Competency in Maritime Archaeology
The 1934 edition of the Oxford English dictionary suggests that competence is “ability (to do,
for a task)” and competent is “properly qualified (to do, for a task)”. Does that same
definition hold true in 2007? And how does this relate to, or define the practice of maritime
archaeology? Are there sufficient standards in place to benchmark against, and what is
benchmarking really?

The Nautical Archaeology Society has recently been commissioned by English Heritage to
answer these questions in its new study entitled “Benchmarking Competence Requirements
and Training Opportunities in Maritime Archaeology.”

Two years in development, this project is intended to relate training to competence (the
ability to do a task) and competence to standards (how well that task is done). The research is
designed to identify the range and level of skills required in maritime archaeology, define

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 17 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

competencies, identify and define how ‘fit-for-purpose’ training is developed (in order to
meet those standards), and to determine how sufficient opportunities can be provided to both
gain and importantly maintain competencies.

The aims of the research are therefore, to:

− Define “maritime” archaeology;
− Identify the range of specific skills and knowledge required within the discipline;
− Characterise the specific competencies required to meet appropriate standards; and
− Benchmark training and other opportunities by which archaeologists can acquire and
further develop competency.

The Society recognises that this may not be all encompassing. The research process will be a
very open and consultative one for exactly this reason, with the NAS running a series of
group consultations in the UK and abroad. In addition to the Sydney consultation, dates have
been set for:

1. Portsmouth: Sunday 11th November 2007 (to coincide with NAS 2007 Annual

2. London: Thursday 31st January 2008 (to coincide with Annual UK Licensees Meeting)

3. Plymouth: Friday 8th February 2008 (to coincide with the International Shipwreck

It is hoped that the consultation will be extended to Albuquerque (to coincide with the
Society for Historical Archaeology 2008 Conference), York, and potentially Edinburgh. In
time, there will also be an online questionnaire available for download from the Society’s

The Society wants to hear from anyone with an interest in the historic environment,
archaeology (maritime or otherwise), education, training, standards. This is a unique
opportunity to help shape the future of maritime archaeology, and one which may have far-
reaching implications. Please direct all questions, comments, observation and advice to Sarah
Ward at the Nautical Archaeology Society Head Office on + 44 (0) 2392 818419, or via email: Now is the time to consider - and share - your

More information is available from the Nautical Archaeology Society Website

(, including the project design, an introductory
presentation, and in due course preliminary results.

Benchmarking Competency in Maritime Archaeology is supported by English Heritage,

Historic Scotland, and the University of Wolverhampton.
Sarah Ward
Nautical Archaeology Society

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 18 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

The Administrative Officer position within the AIMA organisation provides support to the
roles of the Secretary and Treasurer by undertaking their more time consuming duties. The
position was created within AIMA about 4 years ago to help manage the organisation’s
diversified and growing membership.

The objectives of the Administrative Officer position are to:
• Keep AIMA accounts and membership records in order, up to date and easily accessible.
• Assist the Secretary, Treasurer and AIMA/NAS Senior Tutor in their duties.
• Provide administrative assistance for other AIMA functions, such as the annual AIMA

The new contract for AIMA’s Administrative Officer will run from 1 December 2007 – 30
November 2008, and the Administrative Officer will be paid $27.50 per hour for 4 hours of
work per week (total of 16 hours a month).

Applications for the job will be opened from Monday 22 October – Monday 5 November
2007. Applications may be sent by mail or electronically to:

Jennifer Rodrigues (AIMA)

Maritime Archaeology, WA Museum
47 Cliff Street
Fremantle, WA 6160.

If you wish to apply for the position, please contact the AIMA Secretary for a copy of the
brief and job description, or for any queries you may have about the job.
The 3rd International Congress on Underwater Archaeology (IKUWA3) is to be held in
London from 10-12 July 2008.

IKUWA3 explores the theme of challenges in underwater archaeology: how underwater

archaeology can be interlinked across boundaries, whether real or imagined, institutional,
environmental, political, legislative or other.
Underwater archaeology in the early 21st century is undergoing a period of unprecedented
change: new technologies allow access to ever more numerous and more inaccessible sites,
sites which are, paradoxically, under ever greater threat. Remote survey and diving
technologies, the mapping of wrecks and submerged landscapes, and familiarity with undersea
deposits across the globe increasingly place underwater archaeology in the middle of a new
era of underwater exploration. Meanwhile, public involvement and interest in the underwater
cultural heritage is at an all-time high, and tools such as the UNESCO Convention may lead
to unprecedented changes in the management environment.

Concurrent sessions will discuss:

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 19 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

· Research Trends and the Future

· Techniques and Scientific Methods
· Managing Underwater Cultural Heritage for the Public

Supported by British Academy, English Heritage, Historic Scotland, DEGUWA, Gesellschaft

für Schweizer Unterwasserarchäologie, the Römisch-Germanische Kommission, Hampshire
and Wight Trust for Maritime Archaeology (HWTMA), the University College London,
Department of the Environment Northern Ireland and the Underwater Archaeology
Research Centre at the University of Nottingham (UARC), the Congress is being co-hosted
by the Nautical Archaeology Society (NAS) the Institute of Field Archaeologists (IFA), and
the Institute of Archaeology, University College London (UCL), reflecting the breadth of
interest in archaeology under water and the range of individuals and organisations involved in
the exploration and understanding of the maritime cultural resource.

The IKUWA3 includes a three day practical field school, a three day conference (with
associated social events), and two days of fieldtrips, together with a poster display, industry
stands, and a bookshop. IKUWA3 coincides with the 2008 UK National Archaeology Week.
Please visit the Congress Website: for more information.

Abstracts of no more than 250 to 500 words are due no later than the 30th September 2007.
A speakers fund is available for those who require financial assistance.

NAS 2007
Featuring presentations from a range of professional and amateur archaeologists, the 2007
NAS Annual Conference will provide an opportunity to discuss research, review the
archaeological activities of members, exchange ideas on managing our maritime cultural
heritage, and network with friends and colleagues from both the UK and abroad.

An exciting international event, the Conference will take place on Saturday 10th November
2007 and will incorporate a Maritime Exhibition, Poster Display, the 5th Annual Adopt-A-
Wreck Award, the 2007 Annual General Meeting, and a day sailing a tall ship (Sunday 11th

Colin Martin (NAS VP) will be the Master of Ceremonies, and our speakers will include:
Deborah Carlson (Institute of Nautical Archaeology, Texas A&M University), Colin Palmer
(University of Southampton), Peter Holt (3H Consulting Limited), Deborah Cvikel
(University of Haifa), Kevin Camidge (DarkWright Archaeology), Della Scott-Ireton (Florida
Public Archaeology Network), John Broadwater (NOAA), Wang Yu (Academia Sinica /
James Cook University), Mark Dunkley (English Heritage), George Lambrick (Nautical
Archaeology Society [formerly head of the Council for British Archaeology]), John Gribble
(Wessex Archaeology), and Christopher Dobbs (Mary Rose Trust).

For further details of the event, including a booking form, conference timetable and joining
instructions, visit the Conference pages of the NAS website:

Please also note that the event is NOT limited to NAS Members. AIMA Members are
invited to attend at NAS Member rates.

The NAS 2007 Annual Conference is supported by RUCO, English Heritage, BSAC, The
Dive Connection, PADI International, RESON Offshore Ltd, Wessex Archaeology, the Sub-
Aqua Association, and SeaStar Survey. Registrations close 2nd November 2007.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 20 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

Yerranderie is my Dreaming by Valerie Lhuedé. Valued Books, PO Box 420 Milsons
Point, NSW 1565. Paperback. RRP $49.50 incl. GST plus postage and handling. First Edition
limited to 1000 copies numbered.

Valerie Lhuedé owns the Private Town of Yerranderie, an isolated ghost town on the edge of
the World Heritage Area of the Southern Blue Mountains of NSW. While researching the
heritage of this old silver mining town she uncovered a fascinating story concerning the first
white explorer to the area, Francis Luis Barrallier, a young Frenchman in the NSW Corps. In
1802, he was sent as an ambassador by Governor Phillip Gidley King to the mountain
Aborigines. They become characters in the book. Francis wrote a journal describing the
Aboriginal people he met en route and their reactions to him.

Barrallier was a cartographer and became involved, with others, in the early mapping of the
outline of Australia. Against the background of the English/French wars, these men and
women criss-crossed the oceans in their sailing ships, vying for dominance in the new world.

This book is described as ‘a very unusual Ghost Story’. Set against a pageant of mapmakers of
two hundred years ago, the adventurers set sail in wooden ships from the Old World to the
newly discovered island continent, half a globe away. The past comes to life again as
characters speak from the records, or, where these are missing, from the informed
imagination of the writer.

It is an Australian history book with a difference.

1807—2007 Bicentennial of the Abolition of Slavery

The Bill for Abolition stipulated that as from 1 January 1807 ‘all manner of dealing and
trading in the purchase or transfer of slaves, or of persons intending to be sold in, at, or from
any part of the coast or countries of Africa’ was to be ‘utterly abolished, prohibited, and
declared to be unlawful’. Any ship under British colours which disobeyed was to be forfeited
to the crown, and fines of £100 were to be levied for every slave illegally transported. A
system of bounty rewards to captors of slaves and slave ships was introduced, insurance
contracts negotiated on behalf of the trade were to be penalized, and all slaves captured from
the illegal slave ships were automatically to be forfeited to the Crown. Not knowing where
they came from, the agents of the Crown merely dumped them in the new colony of Sierra

The Bill was well intentioned but hopelessly inadequate, and difficult to enforce. Another two
decades passed before the iniquitous system of slavery was finally abolished in the mid-1830s.

Throughout England, various cultural institutions, community and historic organizations have
confronted this aspect of Britain’s history in various pioneering ways (see Tristram Hunt, ‘A
bold step away from guilt and apology’ The Guardian Weekly, 31.08.07: 22). Cultural
institutions such as the Victoria and Albert Museum have looked at the legacy of slavery
through their own collections in their ‘Uncomfortable Truths’ installation, while cities such as
Bristol and London have looked at their city’s economic development on the back of slavery.

Liverpool, a city that once laid claim to the largest fleet of slave ships in the history of the
trade as its merchants overtook Bristol and London in dominating the Middle Passage,
recently opened the world’s first International Slavery Museum as a tribute to the bicentenary

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 21 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

of the abolition of the slave trade. The new museum is said to embody ‘an approach to the
past that moves beyond the tired reparations debate’ (Hunt, 2007).

While Australia has not directly taken this event on board, two recent publications remind us
of this period of history. An article by Ibrahim Metwalli, Nicolas Bigourdan and Yann von
Arnim titled ‘Interim report of a shipwreck at Pointe aux Feuilles, Mauritius: Le Coureur
(1818), an illegal slaver’, appears in the latest volume of the AIMA Bulletin (31: 74–81). The
historical background documents the activities of the vessel as it sailed to places such as
Madagascar, Zanzibar and Mozambique to search for slaves, trying to avoid the patrolling
British frigates stationed in the region.

Secondly, Graeme Henderson, in the second edition of Unfinished Voyages, Western Australian
Shipwrecks 1622–1850 (University of Western Australia Press, Nedlands WA, 2007, ISBN
910.45209941) gives a more detailed account of the James Matthews, formerly the slaver Don
Francisco, taken as a prize by HM Brig Griffon in 1837. Recent research has identified the Don
Francisco as the Bordeaux-owned Voltigeur, probably the 140-ton brig of that name built in the
French annexed Belgium in 1800 (see Henderson, 2007: 245). Le Voltigeur visited Liverpool in
1829 and again in 1834, thus providing an Australian link with this previous major slave-
trading centre.
Myra Stanbury
Western Australian Museum

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 22 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

AIMA EXECUTIVE State Councillors

2006 – 2007 Commonwealth Kieran Hosty
Queensland Bill Jeffery, Vivian
Moran, Andrew Viduka
President: Ross Anderson New South Wales Phil Bowman, Greg
WA Maritime Museum Hodge, Tim Smith
45-47 Cliff Street, FREMANTLE, WA 6160 Northern Territory David Steinberg
Ph: (08) 9431 8442 Fax: (02) 9891 4688 New Zealand Mary O’Keefe
Email: Tasmania Brad Williams
South Australia Peter Bell, Terry Drew,
Secretary Jennifer Rodrigues Jennifer McKinnon
WA Maritime Museum Western Australia Aidan Ash, Vicki
Cliff Street, FREMANTLE, WA 6160 Richards, Corioli
Ph: (08) 9431 8445 Fax: (02) 9891 4688 Souter
Email: Victoria Brad Duncan, Peter
Harvey, Cassandra
Treasurer: Peta Knott Philippou, James
c/- Cosmos Archaeology Pty Ltd Parkinson
122c Percival Road, STANMORE, NSW 2048 Public Officer Cassandra Philippou
Ph: (04) 0723 2987 Fax: (03) 9655 9720 AIMA/NAS Senior TutorDavid Nutley
Email: Auditor: Byron Chartered
Sen.Vice President Cosmos Coroneos Sub Committee:
Cosmos Archaeology Pty Ltd Publications Committee Jeremy Green, Myra
122c Percival Road, STANMORE, NSW 2048 Stanbury, Bill Jeffrey, Kieran Hosty, Mike Nash,
Ph: (02) 9568 5800 Fax: (02) 9568 5822 Nathan Richards
Email: Website Administrator David Nutley
AIMA/NAS Committee David Nutley, Ross
Vice President Mike Nash Anderson, Mark Staniforth, Cos Coroneos, Greg
Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service Hodge, Tim Smith, Brad Duncan, Cass Philippou,
134 Macquarie Street HOBART, TAS, 7000 Bill Jeffrey, Mike Nash, Brad Williams, Mary
Ph: (03) 6233 2387Fax: (03) 6233 3477 O’Keefe
Email: Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology
Vice President David Nutley Registration No. A0820044J
New South Wales Heritage Office Western Australian Associations Incorporation Act
Department of Planning 1987 Section 18(6)
Locked Bag 5020, PARRAMATTA, NSW 2124 Newsletter; Registered by Australia Post
Ph: (02) 9873 8574 Fax: (02) 9878 8599 Publication No: WBH 1635

Thank you to all of the contributors of this

newsletter issue. Special thanks to Mack for an
update on his travels through India and the status
of maritime heritage. Also, thanks to Myra for
updating us on current publications.

I continue to encourage contributors to provide

content for the newsletter. It can only be as good
as you make it. So send in those updates and make
the next one thick. Contributors please note that
the deadline to submit content for the next
newsletter is December 15, 2007. Contributions
can be sent via email to Jennifer McKinnon at:

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 23 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

AIMA/NAS Training Newsletter

Please send any contributions or comments to:

David Nutley
New South Wales Heritage Office, Department of Planning, Locked Bag 5020,
Parramatta, NSW, 2124, Ph: (02) 9873 8574, Fax: (02) 9878 8599,

Issue 43 September 2007


Northern Territory Victoria

David Steinberg Cassandra Philippou
Environment and Heritage Service Heritage Victoria
(Ph) (08) 8924 4141 GPO Box 2797Y MELBOURNE VIC 3001
(Ph) (03) 9655 9721
South Australia
Jason Raupp
Department of Archaeology Western Australia
Flinders University Corioli Souter
GPO Box 2100 Western Australia Maritime Museum
ADELAIDE, SA 5001 Cliff Street
(Ph) (08) 8201 5533 FREMANTLE WA 6160 (Ph) (08) 9431 8448
Bill Jeffery Tasmania
James Cook University Mike Nash
(Ph) (07) 47815513 Cultural Heritage Branch (Ph) (03) 6233 2387
New South Wales
David Nutley (also senior tutor) New Zealand
NSW Heritage Office Mary O’Keefe
Locked Bag 5020, Parramatta, NSW
(Ph) (02) 9873 8574


Part I varies between $120 - $160

depending on the cost of venue hire.
Part I Those who complete Part I will receive
A 2 day introduction to maritime AIMA Associate membership for one
archaeology which includes at least 8 year. This is normally backdated to 1st
hours of classwork in addition to July but for courses after 1st April
practical work underwater and on participants can opt for membership
land. commencing in the following July.
Being able to dive is not a requirement Part II
for attending this course. The cost of

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 24 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)

Newsletter of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (AIMA)

The attendance of a Survey Day

School, or lecture series, the
equivalent of 2 days attendance at Part III
archaeology conferences and the The accumulation of 100 contact
completion of a short project. hours of tuition in six or seven
subject areas.
The minimum requirement for the
completion of Part II is the attendance The 100 contact hours can be accrued
of 7 approved lectures relevant to through special field schools of one or
maritime archaeology, OR a Survey Day more weeks and/or through a number
school which includes 2 lectures and of weekend workshops.
practical survey work. Some of the
Survey Day schools will be carried out Part IV
above water to cater for non-divers. All The presentation of an extended
participants are required to submit a portfolio of work on an approved
satisfactory report on a short survey subject/project, including a report to
project undertaken by themselves. publication standard.
Participants are also required to attend
the equivalent of a 2 day conference in The Part IV graduate will also have to
order to gain a background knowledge have done a minimum of 12 weeks total
of current work in the field of maritime on at least three sites since beginning
archaeology. Part II.

AIMA Newsletter (September 2007), 26(3): 25 (ISSN 0814 – 1479)