Battle of the Atlantic Research and Expedition Group

IMH is pleased and proud to welcome the Battle of the Atlantic Research and Expedition Group as an affiliate organization.  The Group is focused on studying the history of the Battle of the Atlantic in both World Wars, and assessing the physical remains of those battles along the Atlantic coast.  We will share assets, fieldwork, information, and membership.

One possible field project, to commence in 2014 in cooperation with NOAA and the Maryland Historical Trust, will be an assessment of approximately 170 wooden steamers that were built in WWI and now lie in the Potomac River in or near Mallows Bay, Maryland.  See the attached image of one of them.

Archival projects may include researching Vritish and American technical evaluations of the German “Alberich” anechoic rubber tiles that coated the U-1105 and other U-boats

Other projects are also under consideration.

Something completely different

The St Mary’s River Watershed Association has asked IMH to lay six to eight mounds of hollow concrete reef balls as part of their oyster restoration project.  Each mound would comprise 31 to 37 balls.  Each  ball weighs about 350 pounds, so that makes approximately 42 tons to move.  We can handle the balls easily with Roper‘s davit, one at a time.  We probably can carry and deploy six or more balls on a trip, so the whole job would take perhaps 40 trips over two weeks — mostly weekdays, some weekends, preferably when the weather is too rough to dive the four lower Potomac shipwreck sites on the current schedule.  We should start on Monday 9 Sep when the Association’s director is available to show us how to do it.

If you would like to participate please click the “contact” button at the top right corner of this webpage.

Roper status

Roper has finished her spring haul-out.  Major work included plumbing the fuel, water, and exhaust lines for the diesel generator, and adding an anchor windlass and roller, a new Furuno 500 autopilot, and one more antenna for an AirMar flux-gate compass and GPS for the autopilot.  Profound thanks to the energetic and capable Brendan Burke of the St Augustine Lighthouse & Museum; to IMH stalwarts Cynthia Loden Dowdle, Isabel Mack, Dawn Cheshaek, Kebret Andarge, John Dowdle, Kirk Pierce, and David Wright; and to Rick Meatyard and his gallant crew at Tall Timbers Marina.

Sea trials on 4 May were combined with a trip to the U-1105.  Tom Edwards, Craig Goheen, and Tim Manville dived to inspect the buoy chain and rig a floating ball on the conning tower for divers.  The site is officially open for the season.

On 11 May, Dawn, Dan, and I will get Roper underway for her usual summer field school and fieldwork at St Augustine, stopping in Georgia for a week to scan for sites for Chris McCabe of the state Department of Natural Resources.  After she comes home in August we plan to spend all September, all October, and half of November mapping approximarely 90 sites in the Potomac for the Maryland Historical Trust and US Marine Corps Base Quantico.

For information about the field school please visit http://www.staugustinelighthouse.org/LAMP/On_the_Job_Training/Field_School.  For information about the Potomac project use the “contact” button above, or email david.howe@maritimehistory.org.