via Channel NewsAsia, 31 July 2018
Kneeling before his homemade metal scuba helmet, Bhoomin Samang prays for good fortune before he dives into the day’s work – scouring the bed of Bangkok’s Chao Phraya river for sunken treasure.
The 62-year-old is part of a small community known as Thailand’s “Indiana Jones” divers, who brave the inky-black underworld of the trash-filled waterway in search of coins, china, jewellery and scrap metal.
“We look for old coins, sometimes we are hired to find lost objects in the river,” says Bhoomin, a veteran diver who has been scouring the river for 30 years.
Source: Thai ‘Indiana Jones’ divers scour Bangkok’s murky river for treasure
via BBC, 4 June 2018: The article is based on the 300-year-old San Jose wreck found off the coast of Cartagena, but discusses various issues surrounding the claiming of shipwrecks, the preservation of cultural heritage and claims under international laws which are relevant to Southeast Asia.
Claims over shipwrecks have led to long legal battles over the years.
Source: Reality Check: Who owns treasure hidden under the sea?
via News.com.au, 17 May 2018: Chinese inscription provides evidence for a new date to the Java Sea Shipwreck.
AN 800-year-old piece of pottery has helped archaeologists put together fascinating new details about a medieval ship that sank off the coast of Indonesia.
Source: The three words that solved an 800-year-old shipwreck mystery
Revisiting the date of the Java Sea Shipwreck from Indonesia
In this article we draw on suites of new information to reinterpret the date of the Java Sea Shipwreck. The ship was a Southeast Asian trading vessel carrying a large cargo of Chinese ceramics and iron as well as luxury items from outside of China, such as elephant tusks and resin. Initially the wreck, which was recovered in Indonesia, was placed temporally in the mid- to late 13th century based on a single radiocarbon sample and ceramic styles. We employ new data, including multiple radiocarbon dates and inscriptions found on some of the ceramics, to suggest that an earlier chronological placement be considered.
via Channel NewsAsia, 23 April 2018:
SYDNEY: Researchers Monday (Apr 23) voiced renewed hope of discovering why Australia’s first submarine sank, after a detailed underwater survey of the long-lost wreck off Papua New Guinea led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. HMAS AE1, the first of two E Class submarines built for the Royal Australian Navy, vanished on Sep 14, 1914 near the Duke of York Islands. The disappearance of the sub, carrying 35 crew members from Australia, Britain and New Zealand, was the nation’s most enduring military mystery until the wreck was found in December following 12 previous expeditions. The new survey, conducted earlier this month with Allen’s research vessel the R/V Petrel, used a remotely-operated vehicle to inspect the sub and collect more than 8,500 high-resolution photos and several hours of video footage. James Hunter of the Australian National Maritime Museum, an archeological observer to the US-Australia expedition, said the fresh imagery should help unravel the mystery of what happened to AE1. “We’re not there yet, we’re still looking through all the footage … it’s going to give us the detail that we need that we didn’t have before,” he told AFP. He said the researchers, who also came from the Royal Australian Navy, Curtin University, the Western Australian Museum and the Submarine Institute of Australia, previously only had low-resolution overhead shots of the wreck. “We’re going to be looking for all sorts of clues. Even the seemingly most innocuous clues may actually help us move forward and have a better understanding of what happened to the submarine,” he added. So far, the images that have been reviewed reveal that the sub’s stern torpedo tube cap was open, although it is not known why, Hunter said. AE1, found in more than 300 metres of water, was the first Allied submarine loss in World War I. The sub had joined naval forces assigned to the capture of the German Pacific colonies in 1914. On Sep 14 she vanished after a rendezvous off Herbertshohe – present day Kokopo – near the Duke of York Islands with the destroyer HMAS Parramatta. Retired Royal Australian Navy Rear Admiral Peter Briggs said in December the most likely cause of the loss remains a diving accident. Allen’s Petrel was involved in the recent discovery of the wreckage of WWII aircraft carrier USS Lexington off the east coast of Australia.
Source: Underwater survey reveals secrets of Australia WWI wreck off PNG
Research Fellow position in Maritime Archaeology for Australasia and Island Southeast Asia at the University of Southampton. Closing date is 11 May 2018, but note that this is a part-time position.
The Department of Archaeology at the University of Southampton seeks to appoint a Senior Research Fellow in Maritime Archaeology or Maritime Anthropology to work with Dr R. Helen Farr on an ERC grant. The successful candidate will have experience of maritime ethnographic research, knowledge of ethical and political guidelines for best practice for research into indigenous communities, and an interest in Australasian and Island SouthEast Asian archaeology.
Source: Job Opportunity at the University of Southampton: Senior Research Fellow
via Navy Times, 01 March 2018:
The remains were found near the islands of Palau and are being analyzed for identification.
Source: Dive team uncovers WWII pilot’s remains in Pacific
via Khaosod English, 08 March 2018: Last week we celebrated International Womens’ Day, and Khaosod English profile Jo Sankhaprasit, a female underwater archaeologist in Thailand.
Dive into the Gulf of Thailand with Pornnatcha “Jo” Sankhaprasit in search of the relics and secrets of a 700-year-old shipwreck.
Source: Go Deep With Thailand’s 1st Female Undersea Relic Hunter
via Jakarta Post, 02 March 2018:
A team from the Lamongan administration has excavated a grave, reported to be the burial site of three Dutch navy personnel killed in a World War II battle in the Java Sea, in Brondong subdistrict last week.
Source: Remains of WWII Dutch navy personnel found in Lamongan
via the Guardian, 27 Feb 2018:
Indonesian foreign ministry and Dutch embassy looking for bones believed to have come from wrecks of second world war ships
Source: Indonesia: cemetery dug up in search for bones of British and Dutch sailors
Via The Guardian, 28 Feb 2018: Following on the trail of the looted war grave shipwrecks from Indonesian waters and the disposal of the bones. :/
Indonesian scrap metal workers tell of finding and discarding body parts after second world war battleships were wrenched from sea bed
Source: Lost bones, a mass grave and war wrecks plundered off Indonesia