Indiana University & ADMAT Return To Conduct A Fields School in Columbus’s Historic La Isabela, Dominican Republic
In 2006 ADMAT assisted Indiana University in their search for Columbus's second flagship Mariagalante which sunk in 1494 in La Isabela Bay, the location of the first settlement in the New World; built by Christopher Columbus on the north coast of the Dominican Republic . With ADMAT's proton magnetometer a kedge anchor was located, then recorded, recovered and taken to the ONPCS lab for conservation. The information can be seen in the June 2006 news page.
In June 2007, ADMAT were delighted to again assist Indiana University with the maritime archaeological field school to find the historic flagship. Charles Beeker, Director of Academic Diving and Underwater Science Programs, Dr. Geoffrey Conrad, Director of the Mathers Museum of World Cultures, from Indiana University (IU), and Dr. Simon Spooner from the Anglo~Danish Maritime Archaeological Team (ADMAT) with Patrick Enlow ADMAT-USA headed up the team, to continue the scientific work.
ADMAT provided the expertise and training, scientific and diving equipment, together with the boats which were all transported overland from ADMAT's Maritime Archaeological Centre in Monte Cristi.
Weather played a major factor. Torrential rain caused overflow in the local river which burst its banks allowing large quantities of mud to flow into the bay. Caribbean visibility was reduced to a few feet at best. However the students learned to use the Imagenex side scan sonar as well as the Aquascan AX2000 Proton Magnetometer.
Targets were re-located using the magnetometer, which were then pin pointed by swimming the magnetometer and using AGA masks with underwater communications. A test trench was dug using water dredges to verify one of the magnetometer hits.
The side scan sonar found interesting targets which hopefully will be investigated in the future, as well as demonstrating the scouring channels in the sea bed of the bay from the river.