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      Shackleton died on board the Quest; ship’s wreckage has just been found

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Thursday, 13 June - 22:15 · 1 minute

    Ghostly historical black and white photo of a ship breaking in two in the process of sinking

    Enlarge / Ernest Shackleton died on board the Quest in 1922. Forty years later, the ship sank off Canada's Atlantic Coast. (credit: Tore Topp/Royal Canadian Geographical Society)

    Famed polar explorer Ernest Shackleton famously defied the odds to survive the sinking of his ship, Endurance , which became trapped in sea ice in 1914. His luck ran out on his follow-up expedition; he died unexpectedly of a heart attack in 1922 on board a ship called Quest . The ship survived that expedition and sailed for another 40 years, eventually sinking in 1962 after its hull was pierced by ice on a seal-hunting run. Shipwreck hunters have now located the remains of the converted Norwegian sealer in the Labrador Sea, off the coast of Newfoundland, Canada. The wreckage of Endurance was found in pristine condition in 2022 at the bottom of the Weddell Sea.

    The Quest expedition's relatively minor accomplishments might lack the nail-biting drama of the Endurance saga, but the wreck is nonetheless historically significant. "His final voyage kind of ended that Heroic Age of Exploration, of polar exploration, certainly in the south," renowned shipwreck hunter David Mearns, who directed the operation, told the BBC . "Afterwards, it was what you would call the scientific age. In the pantheon of polar ships, Quest is definitely an icon."

    As previously reported , Endurance set sail from Plymouth, Massachusetts, on August 6, 1914, with Shackleton joining his crew in Buenos Aires, Argentina. By January 1915, the ship had become hopelessly locked in sea ice, unable to continue its voyage. For 10 months, the crew endured the freezing conditions, waiting for the ice to break up. The ship's structure remained intact, but by October 25, Shackleton realized Endurance was doomed. He and his men opted to camp out on the ice some two miles (3.2 km) away, taking as many supplies as they could with them.

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      Scientists have found Lake Huron wreck of 19th century ship that sank in 1894

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Monday, 6 March, 2023 - 21:51 · 1 minute

    Ironton , a late 19th century shipwreck, has been located in NOAA's Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary.

    In 1894, a schooner barge called Ironton collided with a Great Lakes freighter called Ohio in Lake Huron's infamous "Shipwreck Alley." Ohio 's wreck was found in 2017 by an expedition organized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Now the same team has announced its discovery of the wreck of the 191-foot Ironton nearly 130 years after its sinking, so well-preserved in the frigid waters of the Great Lakes that its three masts are still standing, and its rigging is still attached. Its discovery could help resolve unanswered questions about the ship's final hours.

    Schooner barges like Ironton were part of a fleet that helped transport wheat, coal, corn, lumber, and iron ore across the Great Lakes region, towed by steamers. At 12:30 am on September 26, 1984, Ironton and another schooner, Moonlight , were being towed unladen across Lake Huron by the steamer Charles J. Kershaw when the steamer's engine failed. The weather was rough, and strong winds pushed the two schooners perilously close to the disabled steamer. Fearing a collision, Moonlight 's crew cut Ironton 's tow line, setting Ironton adrift.

    Captain Peter Girard and his crew tried to regain control of the ship, but the wind blew them onto a head-on collision course with the Ohio , which was carrying 1,000 tons of grain. According to the account of surviving crew member William Wooley, it was too dark to spot the Ohio until it was too late, and Ironton struck the steamer with its starboard bow, tearing a 12-foot wide hole in Ohio 's hull.

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      Probable Roman shipwrecks unearthed at a Serbian coal mine

      Kiona N. Smith · news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 8 April, 2020 - 19:43 · 1 minute

    Probable Roman shipwrecks unearthed at a Serbian coal mine

    (credit: Uryadovy Courier )

    Coal miners in Serbia recently dug up an unexpected surprise: three probable Roman-era ships, buried in the mud of an ancient riverbed for at least 1,300 years. The largest is a flat-bottomed river vessel 15 meters (49 feet) long, which seems to have been built with Roman techniques. Two smaller boats, each carved out from a single tree trunk, match ancient descriptions of dugout boats used by Slavic groups to row across the Danube River and attack the Roman frontier.

    The Kostolac surface mine lies near the ancient Roman city of Viminacium, once a provincial capital and the base for a squadron of Roman warships on the Danube River. When the Roman Empire ruled most of Southern Europe, the Danube or one of its larger branches flowed across the land now occupied by the mine. The three ships lay atop a 15-meter- (49-foot-) deep layer of gravel, buried under seven meters (23 feet) of silt and clay, which preserved them for centuries in remarkably good condition—or did until the miners' earthmoving equipment dug into the steep slope to excavate for the mine.

    "The [largest] ship was seriously damaged by the mining equipment," archaeologist Miomir Korac, director of the Archaeological Institute and head of the Viminacium Science Project, told Ars in an email. "Approximately 35 percent to 40 percent of the ship was damaged. But the archaeological team collected all the parts, and we should be able to reconstruct it almost in full." With any luck, that reconstruction will help archaeologists understand when the three ships were built and how they came to rest in the riverbed.

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