Skip to main content

Photos: Lost Centuries-Old Shipwreck Discovered Off North Carolina

Several artifacts have been discovered in a shipwreck off the North Carolina coast that may date to the American Revolution. Here's a look at what scientists spied with the manned submersible called Alvin. [Read the full story about the shipwreck discovery]

Atlantis & Alvin

The research team, hailing from N.C. State University, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and the University of Oregon, discovered the shipwreck while aboard the research vessel Atlantis (shown here with the submersible Alvin hanging off its stern). The expedition is slated to end July 28. (Photo Credit: Luis Lamar, WHOI)

Wine? Beer?

The scientists found several artifacts during their Alvin dives, including nine glass bottles, one of which is shown here, that possibly held beer or wine. "We brought one of the wine/beer bottles to the surface and delivered it to the NC Maritime Museum for handling," David Eggleston, director of the Center for Marine Sciences and Technology (CMAST) at NC State, told Live Science in an email. Eggleston is one of the principal investigators of the science project. (Photo Credit: WHOI)

Navigating tool

The team also found an octant or sextant and a pottery jug around the wreck site, providing a sense of the ship's age. A sextant is a navigation tool that relies on mirrors to measure the angle between objects, according to PBS NOVA Online. (Photo Credit: WHOI)

Covered in weeds

Sargassum weed from the ocean surface can be seen in this brick pile from the newfound shipwreck off North Carolina. "The find is exciting, but not unexpected," James Delgado, director of the Marine Heritage Program, said in a statement. "Violent storms sent down large numbers of vessels off the Carolina coasts, but few have been located because of the difficulties of depth and working in an offshore environment." (Photo Credit: WHOI)

Sentry spies a wreck

The autonomous underwater vehicle named Sentry captured this sonar image of the newly discovered shipwreck site. The sonar image revealed a dark line and a fuzzy dark area that the scientists thought might be a missing scientific mooring they were looking for (the reason they were in the area in the first place). With that information, WHOI's Bob Waters operated the Alvin submersible with two onboard observers — Bernie Ball of Duke University and Austin Todd of NC State. (Photo Credit: WHOI)

Deploying Sentry

Launch of autonomous underwater vehicle Sentry from the research vessel Atlantis. (Photo Credit: Cindy Van Dover, Duke University)

Follow Live Science @livescienceFacebook & Google+

Jeanna Bryner

Jeanna is the editor-in-chief of Live Science. Previously, she was an assistant editor at Scholastic's Science World magazine. Jeanna has an English degree from Salisbury University, a master's degree in biogeochemistry and environmental sciences from the University of Maryland, and a graduate science journalism degree from New York University. She has worked as a biologist in Florida, where she monitored wetlands and did field surveys for endangered species. She also received an ocean sciences journalism fellowship from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.