Society for Underwater Historical Research

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Society for Underwater Historical Research
Abbreviation SUHR
Successor South Australian Archaeology Society
Formation 30 September 1974; 42 years ago (1974-09-30)
Extinction 12 March 2012
Type NGO
Legal status Incorporated association
Purpose Amateur Maritime Archaeology
Region served
South Australia
Key people
Doug Seton
Peter Christopher
Brian Marfleet
Affiliations Friends of Parks
Website SUHR Publications website

The Society for Underwater Historical Research (SUHR) was an amateur maritime archaeology organisation operating in South Australia (SA). It was formed in 1974 by recreational scuba divers and other persons to pursue an interest in maritime archaeology and maritime history. The SUHR was renamed as the South Australian Archaeology Society in March 2012 as part of a plan to expand its activities beyond maritime archaeology to include other archaeological disciplines.[1]

Origins[edit]

The SUHR was founded in September 1974 by recreational scuba divers principally from the Underwater Explorers Club of South Australia (UEC) and occupational scuba divers from government agencies such as the South Australian Museum and the South Australian Police, as well as a number of individuals interested in maritime history.[2][3]

The origin of the SUHR is due in part to the positive public response to the aftermath of a successful expedition in 1973 to locate and recover 2 anchors discarded during 1803 by the HMS Investigator whilst under the command of Matthew Flinders off the coast of what is now Western Australia.[4] The recovery of the anchors and their connection to the voyage of the HMS Investigator is commemorated in the inclusion of the best bower anchor and the outline of the Australian continent on the SUHR emblem.[5]

Organisation[edit]

After its formation in 1974, the SUHR was initially managed by a committee consisting of a President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and the following specialist officers – Research Officer, Registrar of Relics (added in 1976), an officer to liaise with the responsible part of the South Australian Government which was initially the South Australian Museum, and an officer to liaise with the South Australian Police Force (removed in 1978). By the late 1970s, it had evolved into a project-based organisation whose work consisted of activities such as planning, research, exploration, logistics, photography, survey and the publication of reports. Activities such as recovery and conservation, while historically significant, ceased to be carried out in the late 1980s except where permitted by archaeological practice.[6] In April 1982, a group within the membership who were unhappy with the increasing level of professionalization, resigned and founded a competing organisation known as the Nautical Archaeology Association of South Australia.[7][8] In 1999, after nearly a decade of stagnation, new life was breathed in the organisation via new funding opportunities and interest in membership from undergraduate and postgraduate archaeology students.[9]

Projects[edit]

The 1970s[edit]

  • The SUHR’s first project was a survey ( including excavation of artefacts) of the remains of the Glenelg Jetty at Holdfast Bay which were destroyed by a storm in April 1948.[10][11]
  • Loch Vennachar - discovery of the wreck site on the west coast of Kangaroo Island in 1976, a site survey and the recovery of some material in February 1977 followed by the recovery and conservation of an anchor in 1980.[12][13][14][15]
  • Morgan - recovery of artefacts from the River Murray immediately adjoining the wharf during the years 1977 to 1983.[16][17][18]
  • Star of Greece - a survey of the wreck site at Port Willunga during early 1978.[19]
  • Grecian - survey of the shipwreck located near North Haven including the recovery of some material during the years 1978 to 1980.[20][21]
  • Santiago - survey of the abandoned hull near Port Adelaide during 1978.[22][23]
  • Lady Kinnaird - the recovery of a large anchor from the wreck site near Port Neill during 1979 in response to a request from the local community, and its subsequent conservation and installation for public display in Port Neill in 1980.[24][25]
  • Norma - a survey of the wreck site located west of Semaphore during the period April to December 1979.[26]

The 1980s[edit]

  • An anchor found in Fishery Bay near Port Lincoln by an abalone diver was recovered by the SUHR and local divers during January 1981. It was then conserved with the intent of placing it on public display at ‘Whaler’s Way’, a privately owned nature reserve near the site where the anchor was originally found. The anchor is currently on display at the Axel Stenross Maritime Museum in Port Lincoln.[27][28][29]
  • Tigress - discovery of the shipwreck at Robinson Point south of Port Noarlunga in late 1981 and the subsequent recovery of artefacts from shipwreck site in early 1982.[30][31]
  • Wardang Island - a survey carried out in early 1982 to locate and document the wreck sites of the following ships - SS Australian, MacIntyre, Monarch, Notre Dame D'Arvor, SS Investigator, Aagot, Songvaar, Moorara, and Maid of Australia. The strandings of the ships Candida, and Jean Bart were also studied.[32]
  • Zanoni - the unsuccessful search for the wreck site near Ardrossan during 1982 and 1983 up until its discovery by others in April 1983. The SUHR subsequently assisted on archaeology surveys during the 3 seasons of fieldwork conducted by the South Australian Government in the late 1980s.[33][34][35]
  • Water Witch - the discovery of the shipwreck in the River Murray near Blanchetown in 1982 followed by a survey project in 1984 in association with the South Australian Government and divers from the South Australian Police.[36][37][38]
  • Cowrie (also spelt Cowry) - unsuccessful search for the wreck site near Yankalilla during 1987.[39]
  • Port Elliot - a survey carried out during 1987 and 1988 to locate and document the wreck sites of the following ships: Emu, Commodore, Josephine L'Oizeau, Lapwing, Harry, Flying Fish and Athol.[40]
  • Margaret Brock Reef - a project conducted during 1987 to locate the wreck of the Margaret Brock on the Margaret Brock Reef near Kingston SE.[41]
  • The North Arm Ships’ Graveyard - a project run during the years 1989 and 1990 to research and survey abandoned hulls in North Arm of the Port River such as the following - Flinders, Gem, Grace Darling, Garthneill, Karatta, Mangana, Sarnia, Dorothy H, Sterling, Stanley, Sunbeam and Ullock.[42]
  • ‘Steamships’ was a project to research and survey the following steam-powered vessels during 1989 -1990 - SS Australian, SS Clan Ranald, SS Investigator, and the SS Willyama.[43]

The SUHR also participated in archaeological work organised by others concerning the following wreck sites:

The 1990s[edit]

  • Lillie May - an unsuccessful search for the wreck site near Port Hughes during 1992.[49]
  • Holdfast Bay - a second project carried out at the remains of the Glenelg Jetty destroyed in 1948 during early 2000 to undertake additional survey and artefact recovery works and to create an exhibit in the former Glenelg Town Hall.[50][51][52][53]

The 2000s[edit]

  • Star of Greece - a second project involving a non-disturbance measured survey was carried out from 2002 to 2004.[54][55]
  • SS Ellen - survey of the wreck site located at Morgan’s Beach near Cape Jervis in early 2003.[56]

Advocacy[edit]

During the late 1970s and the early 1980s, the SUHR actively lobbied alone and with others for government action on the following matters:[57]

  • Extension of the Commonwealth Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976 to the coastal waters of South Australia (i.e. from the Low Water Mark out to three nautical miles) which was realized in 1980.[58]
  • The enactment of specific South Australian shipwrecks legislation to compliment the Commonwealth Act which was realised in 1981,[59]
  • The appointment of a Government maritime archaeologist which was realised in late 1981[60]
  • The creation of a maritime museum which was realised by the opening of the South Australian Maritime Museum at Port Adelaide in 1986.[61]

Publications[edit]

Reports[edit]

Collections[edit]

Serials[edit]

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Reynolds, Steve; (2012) 'Club News' in SDF News Sheet – June 2012” (Scuba Divers Federation of South Australia), at http://www.sdfsa.net/newsletters/2012/2012-06-News-Sheet.pdf, retrieved 11/06/2012
  2. ^ Brock, A.E., 1977, ‘The Society for Underwater Historical Research of South Australia’, In Green, J. (Ed.), 1977, Papers from the First Southern Hemisphere Conference on Maritime Archaeology, Perth, Western Australia, Oceans Society of Australia, Australian Sports Publications, Melbourne, Victoria, pp. 113-115.
  3. ^ Jeffery, B. (2003), South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, p. 13, retrieved 25 June 2012 
  4. ^ Brock, A.E., 1977, ‘The Society for Underwater Historical Research of South Australia’, In Green, J. (Ed.), 1977, Papers from the First Southern Hemisphere Conference on Maritime Archaeology, Perth, Western Australia, Oceans Society of Australia, Australian Sports Publications, Melbourne, Victoria, pp. 114.
  5. ^ ‘Second Annual Report, September 1976’, pp.2, in Cowan, David (editor), (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research – Publications 1974-2004, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  6. ^ Cowan, David; (2007), 'About the SUHR', in Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research – Publications 1974-2004 , Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA. pages 9-14.
  7. ^ ‘Letter to Society for Underwater Historical Research Committee’ in the SUHR Newsletter for April 1982, Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research – Publications 1974-2004, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  8. ^ ‘Minutes of the General Meeting held … on Tuesday 27 April 1982’ in SUHR Newsletter for May 1982, Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research – Publications 1974-2004 , Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  9. ^ Richards, N. & Lewczak, C., (2002), Back to the Bay: An overview of the Holdfast Bay Project 1974-2000 and the reinvigoration of avocational maritime archaeology in South Australia, Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Vol. 26, pp. 19-26.
  10. ^ Reschke, William; ‘Treasure off Adelaide’, The Sunday Mail (Adelaide, SA), 23 March 1975.
  11. ^ Jeffery, B., 2003, South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, Adelaide, page 2.
  12. ^ Christopher, P., (1979), ‘The Loch Vennachar Expedition’, Wreck Diving Seminar, Scuba Divers Federation of Victoria, pp. 51-55.
  13. ^ Tilbrook, K., ‘Divers recover relics from KI wreck’, The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 23 February 1977.
  14. ^ Jeffery, W., 1980, Raising the Loch Vennachar anchor. Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, 4:6-7
  15. ^ Kentish, P. & Booth, B., 1983, Conservation of the Loch Vennachar anchor. Society for Underwater Historical Research. North Adelaide.
  16. ^ Marfleet, B., 1980, ‘Morgan’, Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Vol. 4, pp. 7-14.
  17. ^ Marfleet, B., 1983, Underwater Archaeology at the River Murray Port of Morgan, Proceedings of the Second Southern Hemisphere Conference on Maritime Archaeology, ed. Jeffery, W. & Amess, J., SA Department of Environment & Planning and Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs & Environment, Adelaide, SA, pp. 293-304.
  18. ^ Marfleet, Brian, (2006), The Morgan Project, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  19. ^ Booth, B., 1978, ‘Project: Star of Greece’, SDFA Dive News, No. 2.
  20. ^ Coleman, R., 1979, ‘Society for Underwater Historical Research’, “Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, 2.1
  21. ^ Mate, J., (1983), ‘The Grecian Project’, Proceedings of the Second Southern Hemisphere Conference on Maritime Archaeology, ed. Jeffery, W. & Amess, J., SA Department of Environment & Planning and Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs & Environment, Adelaide, SA, pp. 305-309.
  22. ^ Jeffery, W.F.; (1978), 'Project: Santiago', Annual Report 1978, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA, pages 8-9.
  23. ^ Jeffery, B., 2003, South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, Adelaide, page 12
  24. ^ Society for Underwater Historical Research (SUHR) (1979), Annual report 1979, Society for Underwater Historical Research, pp. 28–29, ISSN 0157-7646 
  25. ^ *Society for Underwater Historical Research (S. Aust.) (1980), Annual report 1980, Society for Underwater Historical Research, p. 38, ISSN 0157-7646 
  26. ^ Jacques, Phil: (1979), ‘The Norma, Annual Report 1979, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.
  27. ^ ‘Whaler’s Anchor to be raised at Fishery Bay’, Port Lincoln Times, 12 December 1980.
  28. ^ Kentish, Peter; Drew, Terry & Booth, Brenton (1985), The Anchor – Fishery Bay, Eyre Peninsular, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.
  29. ^ 'Axel Stenross Maritime Museum' at http://axelstenross.com.au/, retrieved 25 June 2012.
  30. ^ 'Divers find old SA Shipwreck', The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 28 October 1981
  31. ^ Powell, B., & Jeffery, B., 1987, ‘A Catalogue of artefacts recovered during the rescue archaeology of the shipwreck Tigress’, Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Vol. 11, pp. 47-59.
  32. ^ ‘Wardang ships resurface in book’, The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 2 January 1984.
  33. ^ Jacques, Phil; (1983), ‘The Zanoni Project’, Newsletter June 1983 in Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research: Publications 1974-2004, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  34. ^ Jeffery, B., 2003, South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, Adelaide, pages 20-21
  35. ^ 'Shipwreck becomes a Jubilee job', The Advertiser, 5 December 1985.
  36. ^ ‘Team to dive on River Murray Mouth wreck’ (sic), The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 14 July 1983.
  37. ^ Drew, Terry; (1983), 'Waterwitch' (sic), Annual Report 1983, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA, page 7.
  38. ^ Jeffery, W.F. (principal author), (1987), The Water Witch Wrecksite, A Report on the Identification, Survey & Partial Recovery of the Wrecksite, Department of Environment & Planning, Adelaide SA.
  39. ^ 'The Cowry', Annual Report 1987-88, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA
  40. ^ Perkins, John; (1988), The Shipwrecks of Port Elliot 1853-1864, North Adelaide, SA.
  41. ^ Drew, Terry; (1987), 'Margaret Brock Reef Site Inspection', Annual Report 1987-88, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.
  42. ^ Brown, Adrian; (1990) 'The North Arm Graveyard', Soundings, February 1990, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA page 13-17.
  43. ^ Various, (1990), 'Steam Ships', Annual Report 1988-90, Society for underwater Historical Research, pages 13-17 in Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research: Publications 1974-2004, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  44. ^ Christopher, P.; (1980) ’Ningaloo Expedition Part 1’ & Marfleet, B.; (1980) ’Ningaloo Expedition Part 2,’ in Annual Report 1980, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.
  45. ^ 'Point Cloates Unidentified Wreck', in Western Australian Museum Shipwreck Databases at http://www.museum.wa.gov.au/maritime-archaeology-db/wrecks/point-cloates-unidentified, retrieved 02/08/2012.
  46. ^ Marfleet, B.; (1983) 'Xantho, A Visit to WA's first steamer,' in Annual Report 1983, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.</
  47. ^ ‘Xantho’ in Western Australian Museum Shipwreck Databases at http://www.museum.wa.gov.au/maritime-archaeology-db/strangers-on-the-shore/xantho, retrieved 02/08/2012.
  48. ^ Drew, T.; (1986) ‘The 1984 HMS Pandora Expedition’, Annual Report 1985-86, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA.</
  49. ^ Brown, Adrian; (1992) 'The Search for the Lillie May', Soundings, April 1992, Society for Underwater Historical Research, North Adelaide, SA page 14-17.
  50. ^ Richards, N. & Lewczak, C., (2002), ‘Back to the Bay: An overview of the Holdfast Bay Project 1974-2000 and the reinvigoration of avocational maritime archaeology in South Australia’, Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Vol. 26, pp. 19-26.
  51. ^ Rodrigues, J., (2002), ‘Holdfast Bay historical artefacts: Assessing an unprovenanced collection’, Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Vol. 26, pp. 27-34.
  52. ^ Jeffery, B., 2003, South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, Adelaide, the cover page.
  53. ^ 'Bay Discovery Centre, About us,' at http://www.holdfast.sa.gov.au/page.aspx?u=1458, retrieved 10/08/2012.
  54. ^ Cowan, D., (2003), ‘The Star of Greece Project’, AIMA Newsletter, Vol. 22, No. 2, pp. 21-23, Australasian Institute of Maritime Archaeology.
  55. ^ Cowan, D., (2004), The Star of Greece Project, Dive Log Australasia, April 2004, No. 189, pp. 66.
  56. ^ Cowan, David; (2003), ‘The SS Ellen Project’, Soundings Vol 4 No.1, pages 8-14 in Cowan, David (editor); (2007), The Society for Underwater Historical Research: Publications 1974-2004, Society for Underwater Historical Research, Port Adelaide, SA.
  57. ^ Christopher, P., 1983, The Society for Underwater Historical Research in South Australia, Proceedings of the Second Southern Hemisphere Conference on Maritime Archaeology, ed. Jeffery, W. & Amess, J., SA Department of Environment & Planning and Commonwealth Department of Home Affairs & Environment, Adelaide, SA, pp. 93-97.
  58. ^ Jeffery, B., 2003, South Australian Maritime Heritage Program 1970s – 2002 Projects, Activities and Bibliography, Heritage Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage, Adelaide, page 15, at http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.203.1192&rep=rep1&type=pdf, retrieved 25 June 2012.
  59. ^ ‘Legislation to protect SA Shipwrecks’, The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 20 August 1981.
  60. ^ Hosty, Kieran; and Stuart. Iain; (1994), ‘Maritime Archaeology Over the Last Twenty Years’, page 13, in Australian Archaeology, Number 39, 1994, Australian Archaeological Association Inc.
  61. ^ ‘Anchor sparks call for museum’, The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA), 27 January 1981

Further reading[edit]

  • Christopher, P., (1979), ‘Some South Australian Shipwrecks’, The Journal of the Historical Society of South Australia, ed. Nance, C., Historical Society of South Australia, North Adelaide, SA, No. 6, pp. 3–11.
  • Christopher, P., (2009), Australian shipwrecks : a pictorial history, Axiom, Stepney, South Australia (ISBN 9781864765885).
  • Hartell, R. & Richards, N., 2001, Garden Island Ships, Graveyard Maritime Heritage Trail, (Booklet) Heritage South Australia, Department of Environment and Heritage, Adelaide (ISBN 0 7308 5894 4).
  • Jeffery, W.F. (principal author), (1987), The Water Witch Wrecksite, A Report on the Identification, Survey & Partial Recovery of the Wrecksite, Department of Environment & Planning, Adelaide SA (ISBN 0 7243 8934 2).
  • Kenderdine, S., (1993), Historic Shipping on the River Murray: A guide to the terrestrial and submerged archaeological sites in South Australia, State Heritage Branch, Department of Environment and Land Management, Adelaide, SA (ISBN 0 7308 2690 2).
  • Nash, Michael (editor); (2007), Shipwreck Archaeology in Australia, University of Western Australia Press, Crawley, WA, (ISBN 9780980296433).

External links[edit]