Captain James Cook’s ship, the HMS Endeavour, may have been discovered off the coast of Newport, Rhode Island.

Captain Cook’s Wreckage Found

Cook, a legendary British explorer, had commanded the HMS Endeavour from 1768 to 1771, at which time it ended up in the hands of another captain. After exchanging hands a couple more times, the ship was used in the Revolutionary War under the name Lord Sandwich.

“Lord Sandwich was the first lord of the admiralty at the time so the name makes sense — a nod by its private owner,” Dr. Kathy Abbass, the executive director of Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project, told CNN. “We know from its size, dimension and these records that the Sandwich was the Endeavour.”

“The American army was assembled on the mainland and the French sent a fleet to help,” Abbass added, speaking of the Battle of Rhode Island. “The British knew they were at great risk so they ordered 13 ships out to be scuttled in a line to blockade the city. They were sunk in fairly shallow waters.”

Abbass and others believe that the ship’s wreckage is likely among that of the other 12 ships in the battle fleet. Following “a more intense study of each vessel’s structure and its related artifacts,” the Rhode Island Marine Archaelogy Project could be able to determine what debris belongs to the ship formerly known as the HMS Endeavour.

Cook, who mapped the uncharted waters of the south Pacific Ocean, is credited with providing the first accurate map of the Pacific. He had also made history in his travels to the east coast of Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii.

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