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Northeast Historical Archaeology

Abstract

Two one-week field projects, carried out during the summers of 2011 and 2012, investigated an historical wooden shipwreck in the intertidal zone on the western side of Mount Desert Island, Maine. Salvage, tide, ice, and other environmental forces have reduced the wreck to a keel, frames, and outer hull planking. Despite this, some observations can be made from the limited surviving evidence. The vessel appears to have been heavily-built, with a full-bodied hull, and constructed in the mid to late 19th century. Its location, hull, and the wood shavings and brick chips found between its timbers suggest that it may represent a sailing vessel engaged in the coasting trade. Archaeological investigation of the site also served as an informal field school, providing experience in maritime site recording to Acadia National Park staff and members of the public.

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