Category Archives: Underwater Heritage

Renewed search for one of Spain’s “greatest treasure galleons”

Posted on: February 25, 2020 by Paul Stevenson

Media reports this month claim that almost four centuries after the ill-fated galleon Nuestra Señora del Juncal (“the Juncal”), a Spanish naval vessel, sank off the Mexican coast in a storm in October 1631, researchers from Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History and Spain’s National Museum of Underwater Archaeology are to undertake a 10-day […]

Is the Titanic struggle over?

Posted on: January 28, 2020 by Paul Stevenson

Everyone knows that the wreck of RMS Titanic is special. Media reports have confirmed as much over the past week, which has seen reports about the wreck site and a bespoke international compact relating to the ill-fated vessel make headlines. As media reports have confirmed, a treaty negotiated in 2003 (Agreement Concerning the Shipwrecked Vessel […]

Finder of RMS Titanic in bid to solve Earhart mystery

Posted on: August 20, 2019 by Paul Stevenson

In something a bit different for followers of underwater cultural heritage, and a reminder that underwater heritage is not only about shipwrecks, news this week from the New York Times amongst others that veteran underwater sleuth Dr Robert Ballard, finder of RMS Titanic, has charted a course for a remote atoll in the Pacific island […]

Judicial review undertaken for HMS Victory salvage

Posted on: April 10, 2019 by Rebecca Reynolds

Treasure, bounty, pirates – these words conjure up romantic adventures in peoples’ minds, none the more so than when they relate to historically important wrecks. An example of this is the HMS Victory which sank in 1744 in the Channel on its way back from a mission to relieve British ships blocked in the River […]

UNESCO weighs in over potential billion-dollar shipwrecked treasure

Posted on: May 5, 2018 by Paul Stevenson

Last Friday, the UN cultural agency UNESCO called on Colombia not to exploit commercially the three centuries’ old wreck of the Spanish galleon, San Jose, hailed by some as “the holy grail of shipwrecks”. Reports suggest that the San Jose contains a cargo worth billions of dollars. Colombian authorities reportedly intend to recover the San […]

Commentary on prosecution of UK man for antiquities smuggling

Posted on: August 30, 2017 by IAL Admin

A UK man, Toby Robyns, was apprehended ten days ago by Turkish authorities, as he tried to leave Turkey with a dozen coins. He had found the coins with his children on the seabed while snorkelling. He is still in prison, awaiting a decision by the Turkish courts. Our Assistant Director, Alexander Herman, was interviewed […]

500-year old wreck discovered off the coast of Oman

Posted on: March 17, 2016 by Paul Stevenson

West Sussex-based marine consulting and operations company, Blue Water Recoveries, has announced the find of (probably) the Portuguese East Indiaman, the Esmeralda. Although not certain, it is thought to be very likely that the wreck, which lies off the coast of Oman, is the 500 year-old wreck of the vessel believed to have been commanded […]

Terror in the Arctic? Ownership of Franklin’s “lost expedition”

Posted on: September 22, 2014 by Paul Stevenson

Reports this month of an important maritime discovery as news outlets announce the likely find of a Devon-built explorer ship which it is thought was lost under the Arctic sea 160 years ago. The expedition of British Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin holds near mythic status in Canada, mystique underscored by reference to his expedition […]

Salvors strike gold off Florida’s “treasure coast”

Posted on: August 14, 2014 by Paul Stevenson

As further proof of its moniker the “treasure coast”, Reuters reports the recovery of a three centuries’ old treasure off the east coast of Florida. This is the most recent publicised discovery from the wreck site of the so-called “1715 fleet”, a convoy of approximately a dozen vessels (of which one apparently survived) which sank […]