A stretch of the imagination is all you need when scanning a map of the Baltic Sea where you might find a dragon guarding the entrance. Some see it and some don’t. Check out the entrance to the beast’s mouth and follow it just like ships did hundreds of years ago as they sailed to Medieval and Northern European trading posts.
What happens when your bubble gets burst while researching an ancient shipwreck? “You’ll just have to find another bubble,” quipped a diver who appeared a bit envious of the discovery and successful salvage of a British warship that sank in 1682.
How would you like to dive on a 3,300-year-old shipwreck sunk in 150 feet of water in the Mediterranean Sea off Uluburun, (pronounced u loo bu run) near Kas, Turkey? It’s possible if you hook up with the Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA) Texas A & M University, College Station, Texas, whose students and professors have visited it for years.
Since the earliest days of Euro/American settlements on the Oregon coast, stories have been told of a shipwreck laden with large blocks of beeswax, candles, Chinese porcelain and other exotic artifacts from the Orient. At first, settlers thought it might be a Chinese junk, a Portuguese trader or an English pirate ship and referred to it as the “mystery wreck.”
When it comes to American shipwrecks, the three-mast barque Torrent is often overlooked. What might have been a worse tragedy had a happy ending as more than 100 men, women and children escaped the cold waters of Kenai River at Cook Inlet and made it safely to shore.
It took 100 years for the story of the HMS Mesaba and the RMS Titanic to surface again from the deep part of the Irish Sea. The Mesaba, victim of German submarine U-118 on April 1, 1918, was found recently by scientists working from Bangor University’s research vessel Prince Madog (the captain’s pet pooch).
Coffins? That doesn’t sound too inviting does it? A conglomeration of coral reefs and sandy plains, Coffins Patch—six miles from Marathon, Florida, is a haven for shipwrecks. The reefs are “patchy,” hence the name, but where do the “coffins” come in? There’s a story of the diver who visited the area everyday for a week, searching for a ship that sank with a cargo of coffins in its hold. But the diver was quite disappointed when he learned this was just a rumor.
John Christopher fine is a busy man. He splits time between his horse farm in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and Boynton Beach, Florida, where he conducts coral reef research, lectures on Oceanography and teaches scuba diving. Being a marine biologist and an expert in maritime affairs, he writes about the current conditions of our oceans and seas.
When Mercury Astronaut Gordon Cooper retired from the U.S. Air Force Space Program in1970, he left behind a legacy of flight success and intrigue. The flight aspect of his career is chronicled in the long list of awards he received during his military service in the U.S. Marines, U.S. Air Force and finally as an astronaut.
During the “Gusher Age,” 1900 to 1940, there appeared to be as many oil rigs in Texas as desert cactus. But what became a trillion dollar industry, with rigs around the world, the search for “black gold” created a frightening scenario when a construction worker yelled, “Fire in the well!” When an oil company’s own “roughnecks” couldn’t extinguish the blaze, word went out fast: “Call Red!” they cried.