Their research partners in the United States, however, called the announcement premature.
The Endeavour, on which the British explorer made a historic voyage to Australia and New Zealand between 1768 and 1771, was scuttled in Newport harbor during the American Revolutionary War.
square kilometers where we believe the Endeavor sank”,”text”:”Since 1999 we have been investigating several 18th century shipwrecks in a 3.7 square kilometer area where we believe the Endeavor sank”}}” >Since 1999 we have been investigating several 18th century shipwrecks in a 3.7 square kilometer area where we believe the Endeavor sanksaid Kevin Sumption, director of the Australian National Maritime Museum, at a press conference on Thursday.
Based on archival and archeological evidence, I’m confident this is the Endeavorhe said.
But the Rhode Island Marine Archeology Project said it was too early to draw that conclusion.
In a statement, the project’s chief executive, DK Abbass, said the announcement was a
breach of contract and added that
conclusions will be based on proper scientific process and not Australian emotions or politics.
A spokesperson for the Australian National Maritime Museum replied that Ms Abbass had
the right to have one’s own opinion on the vast amount of accumulated evidence.
The museum believes that this does not breach any contract.
The Endeavor is the ship on which Captain Cook sailed from England to Tahiti and then New Zealand, before reaching Australia in 1770 and mapping the east coast of the continent.
When it sank in Newport Harbor in August 1778, the ship had been renamed Lord Sandwich and was being used by the British to hold prisoners of war during the American Revolution.
The British scuttled the ship, along with four others, to prevent a French fleet from entering Newport harbor to support the Americans.
This was a few months before Cook’s death in Hawaii, in February 1779.
After two centuries at the bottom of the harbor, around 15% of the Endeavor remains intact, according to the Australian National Maritime Museum.
The focus is now on what can be done to protect and preserve itsaid Mr. Sumption.