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The Search for HM Bark ENDEAVOUR

Where is the original HM Bark Endeavour?
Historians believe the original Endeavour ended its days on the floor of Newport Harbour, in Rhode Island in 1778 as one of a number of vessels sunk to protect the town during the American Revolutionary War.
The Rhode Island Marine Archaeological Project (RIMAP), headed by Dr Kathy Abbass, has been diving and surveying the remains of these vessels over the last 20 years. Australian National Maritime Museum’s maritime archaeologists have been actively involved in the hunt for Endeavour’s remains and have dived with RIMAP on some of the sites, most recently in 2015.
Recent archival research by ANMM and RIMAP has revealed that the Endeavour was one of five vessels sunk off one of the town’s defensive batteries, further narrowing down the search.
On May 4 RIMAP described its 2016 plans to undertake further archaeological investigations to determine the identities of the five ships and what the next stage of study will involve. They released charts of the wreck site plans and their proposed schedule to identify the ships in the lead of up to 2020, the 250th anniversary of Cook charting the East Coast of Australia.

Cook’s famous ship of discovery, built in 1764 and initially named the Earl of Pembroke, began service as a collier on the east coast of England.
The British Admiralty purchased Earl of Pembroke in 1768, fitted it out for a voyage to the South Pacific and gave it the new name Endeavour.
When Cook returned from his great circumnavigation in 1771, the Admiralty refitted the vessel again, this time as a store ship for voyages to the Falkland Islands.
In 1775 the Admiralty sold the Endeavour out of the Royal Navy. In 1776, now renamed Lord Sandwich it was hired to transport troops across the Atlantic to America where the American Revolution against British colonial rule had started.
After disembarking troops in New York, the Lord Sandwich was later used as a prison ship in Newport and was there when a powerful French fleet threatened to wrest control of the town from British Forces. In the face of this superior force the British destroyed their own frigates to stop them falling into enemy hands, and concentrated their efforts on protecting the town of Newport.
In the event the arrival of a Royal Navy fleet temporarily saved the town but by the following year the British troops had withdrawn from Newport and the Lord Sandwich (Endeavour) was left to decay on the seabed.
ANMM is excited to be working with RIMAP at a time when real progress has been made towards discovery of the remains of Cook’s famous ship.