ADMAT's St Kitts Maritime Archaeological Project 2003

Phase 1 White House Bay Wreck

Diving and Underwater Pictures. Page 3

Archaeological Survey And Excavation Starts On The Wreck Site

With the grid in place the survey and uncovering of the sand and overburden  can begin. The grid is divided into one meter squares. Is made of PVC piping connected by PVC cross pieces. Each piece of the grid is held in place with a nail which can be removed if necessary, if for example there is a need to lower the dredge head much below the grid. Each square has it own number which is always read on the upper left corner. The grid serves multiple purposes. It is used for measuring in the wreck and the artefacts found on it for photographic reference, it keeps the divers and the dredge form lying directly on the wreck (potentially damaging it) and this also helps keep the visibility good. The PVC piping was generously donated by Dee Cee Trading Ltd and the PVC cross pieces by Nibco.

The wreck was carefully uncovered by hand fanning into the dredge. The railway lines and modern contamination was removed and some of the ballast rocks were placed on the side so that the timbers could be measured.

This second page shows the team with the great assistance of the St. Christopher-Nevis Defence Force and Coastguard, clearing the wreck site. The visible remains of the great timbers were "dusted down" by hand fanning. The grid was placed over the wreck centred along the presumed keel line. The modern contamination to the site was placed to one side of the wreck. These were the railway lines which had been placed in the area a number of years ago, in an attempt to make a jetty near by. The five cannons nearby were located and the position marked.