David Howe's blog

Lewes project mostly blown out

We got one full day and two half days of work at Lewes, but the seas were too rough to work on the other days.  We finished the small area left over from 2007, found two sites in the outer harbor, confirmed two others that appear on the nautical chart, and disproved two more on the chart.  We also confirmed a dozen charted wrecks in the Chesapeake and the Delaware en route to Lewes, including (I hope) the schooner Mary A. deKnight that foundered in 1870 near Annapolis.

black water dive training

Once again, Adventure Scuba Company (Tom Black and Ron Miller) will be
conducting its Black Water Training - Self Rescue Course on Sunday,
December 13.

There will be a brief (~ 1 hr) class portion at the shop beginning at 3pm,
and the confined water training will be conducted at Oak Marr Pool. The
pool session runs from 6pm to 7:45pm. Directions to the pool will be
provided.  Tanks and weights will be provided if you need them. You do need to bring

Society for Historical Archaeology, annual conference

The annual SHA conference will be held at Amelia Island Plantation, Jacksonville FL, from January 6 to 9, 2010.  This is the biggest national conference in our field.  I hope you will consider attending.

The preliminary program is posted at

IMH will have good representation at the conference, including the following:

Solo dive training

As you may know, Adventure Scuba has been offering training through SDI in addition to NAUI and PADI.  Although we traditionally promote the buddy system, one of the courses that I believe can be of great value to IMH divers is the SDI Solo Diver Course.  SDI has successfully promoted solo diving as an option for experienced divers engaged in certain activities.

Lewes DE project

We will do harbor and near-shore reconnaissance at Lewes from Sunday 27 September through Saturday 10 October.  The targets date from colonial and Rev War through early 20th century.  On the weekend of 3 - 4 October we will be pierside for U. Delaware's Coast Day and Lewes' Boast the Coast.  We might also do a field school.  Free dorm rooms might be available at Cape Henlopen State Park.  If you are interested in participating please use the contact link or email david.howe@maritimehistory.org.


IMH field school

Our first field school in low-viz reconnaissance was held on 15-16 and 22-23 September.  Nine students attended.

The course included a day and a half on shore to cover basic material and to practice site mapping techniques, two and a half days on the water to run sidescan sonar search lanes and map several wrecks, and completion of a Maryland Historical Trust site report on one of the wrecks.

Sipriz at Tall Timbers

Geert van der Kolk, a friend of IMH, had a traditional Haitian fishing sloop built at Ile la Vache last year, sailed her from Haiti to Florida, displayed her at a museum in Palm Beach, then brought her to DC for display at American University, all to publicize the plight of the Haitian people generally and the boat people specifically.  She is now at Tall Timbers, pending donation to a maritime museum.  Pictures and story at http://web.mac.com/geertvanderkolk/iWeb/homepage/English.html



Roper is back!

She safely returned from St. Augustine on Friday, 7 August.  The folks at LAMP worked her hard and took very good care of her.  She is fully operational for the upcoming field school in the Potomac.

We might take her south again next year for another session, perhaps with some modifications -- including better stowage on deck and below, and a small derrick for lifting more ballast from the site LAMP is working.

Used dive gear

Long-time friend Townie Burden just gave IMH a lot of used gear, including wetsuits, drysuits, hoods, booties, BCs, and accessories.  Some of it is almost new, but some is pretty salty.  The suits are small, medium, and extra large.  We will keep some as loaners, and sell some.  If you are interested, contact david.howe@maritimehistory.org.

He also gave us a Fisher Pulse 8-X underwater metal detector.  We will keep that for use in the field, not sell it.  Sorry!


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