Researchers say they believe the ship that 18th century explorer Capt. James Cook used to sail around the world is still submerged somewhere in Rhode Island’s Newport Harbor, but it’ll take a lot of work and money to identify it.
The Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project, which is leading the search effort, said at a news
conference in Providence on Wednesday that it has narrowed its search to a group of five sunken wrecks.
Nearly 250 years ago, Capt. James Cook ran aground on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef during a voyage to the South Pacific to observe the planet Venus. His ship was the Endeavour, an ugly and awkward little vessel that improbably helped him become the first European to chart Australia’s east coast.
Cook used the Endeavour to claim Australia for the British during his historic 1768-71 voyage.
The Endeavour was part of a fleet of 13 ships the British scuttled during the Revolutionary War in 1778 to blockade Newport Harbor from the French, Abbass said.
It was listed in the records under a different name, the Lord Sandwich.
In 2014, the Australian National Maritime Museum signed an agreement to help the Rhode Island group find the lost vessel. The museum hopes to locate the wreck in time for the 250th anniversary celebrations of Cook’s voyage