Founded by Dr. Clive Cussler, the National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA) is a non-profit, volunteer foundation dedicated to preserving our maritime heritage through the discovery, archaeological survey and conservation of shipwreck artifacts.
The sleepy little town of St. Pierre, fifteen miles north of Fort de France, Martinique, was just another dot on the map until May 8, 1902. That was its day of infamy when 29,000 residents died. Disregarding warnings that the neighboring volcano, Mt. Pelee, might erupt, people went about their business as usual. But at 7:50 a.m. a hail of fire, red hot stones and scalding mud rained down upon the town and its seaport. Flames danced upon waters fed by thousands of gallons of rum from the distilleries on the shoreline. Fire engulfed twelve vessels tied to the wharf and anchored in the bay, creating an underwater graveyard: The Shipwrecks Of St. Pierre. more »
When Wayne Valero asked me to share one of my most memorable moments underwater, I couldn’t help reminiscing about my trip to St. Kitts in February 1998. That’s where I witnessed the last solar eclipse in the southern hemisphere before the millennium. While my fellow journalists were lining up to watch the eclipse from Brimstone Hill Fortress, 3,700 feet above sea level, I experienced it on a shipwreck in 50 feet of water. more »
Smuttynose is not the name of some comic book character. It’s one of nine Isles of Shoals that lie off the coasts of Maine and New Hampshire. A fishing haven in the 16th century and a stop-off for Spanish ships homeward bound from the New World, the isles were vacated at the outset of the Revolutionary War. Fishermen and traders moved to the mainland for fear of being captured by ships of the British Navy. Today, the isles are privately owned and sparsely populated. But one of the isles, Smuttynose, still embraces the romance and mystery of early days and the lure of sunken treasure from a Spanish frigate. more »
In 1913, Shackelton advertised his expedition in the British newspapers: Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages, bitter cold and long months of complete darkness. There will be constant danger and a safe return is doubtful. Looking for the bravest of the brave. There will be honor and recognition in case of success. more »
Even Fluff, the fearless, sometimes intimidating Pekingese pet of Mrs. Mollie Wilmot, panicked when the 200 foot freighter slammed into the retaining wall and deposited its bow in the family’s beachfront swimming pool. The maid, dressed prim and proper and acting as a maid should in a fashionable Palm Beach villa once featured in Town and Country Magazine, announced calmly, “Madame, we have visitors.” more »