Excerpts: An estimate of the value of sunken treasure in the world begins with a guess at the number of sunken ships. James Delgado, director of the Maritime Heritage Program at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), estimates that there are a million shipwrecks underwater now.
“Given everything that’s charted and all the rest, I would say that the majority of them remain undiscovered,” Delgado says.
Excerpt: “In terms of history, these are priceless national treasures,” says James Delgado, director of a maritime-heritage program within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “They talk about not just ships of treasure, but vessels that really were the lifeblood of the American economy.”
When James P. Delgado became director of the Maritime Heritage Program at the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in 2010, the agency’s Battle of the Atlantic Project was in its third year. The ambitious multiagency effort seeks to research, locate and document the many German U-boats, Allied warships and merchant marine vessels lost in the early 1940s along the mid-Atlantic coast. Delgado—a marine archaeologist, historian, museum director and author of 33 books—speaks often of his passion for the sea and for history.
Excerpts: “Not everybody dives, and so that’s why we embrace technologies like this that are cutting edge, cost effective and give you a three-dimensional sense of that ship on the bottom,” said James Delgado, director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Maritime Heritage Program. “The kinds of imagery — it’s almost photographic.”
…“In terms of the guys who died in the Cumberland that day, not only are they heroes, but they’re sons and fathers and grandsons and nephews and they left families who are still with us today and their stories resonate,” Delgado said.
Excerpts: (Honolulu, HI) Maritime heritage archaeologists working with NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries have found the nationally-significant wreckage of a famous 1800’s Nantucket whale ship, Two Brothers, on a reef off French Frigate Shoals, nearly six hundred miles northwest of Honolulu, in the remote Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument.
…“Discoveries like the Two Brothers serve an important role in connecting geographically separated regions and communities (New England and the Pacific), the past to the present, and provide context and better understanding human decisions that have altered the planet,” said James Delgado, director, NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries’ Maritime Heritage Program.
Excerpts: NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and Spain’s Ministry of Culture announced today the signing of a memorandum of understanding outlining a framework to jointly identify, protect, manage and preserve underwater cultural resources of mutual interest within their respective areas of responsibility.
…“The heritage spawned by Spain’s interactions with the sea and the exploration and settlement of our coasts by Spanish mariners dates back 500 years,” said James P. Delgado, Ph.D., NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Maritime Heritage Program director. “This arrangement will give us access to the incredible records in the archives and libraries of Spain.”