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 Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume 
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 Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume
Sonar equipment will scan ocean floor for wrecks

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 | 2:07 PM CST

Canadian officials will return to the Northwest Passage this summer in search of Sir John Franklin's long-lost ships, after efforts were postponed last year. :clap

Parks Canada began a three-year effort in 2008 to find the famed British explorer's ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, which went missing more than 160 years ago in the High Arctic.

The government-sponsored search was postponed last summer because Parks Canada could not get on a military or Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker.

This time, federal searchers say, they will be on board the coast guard icebreaker Sir Wilfrid Laurier for three weeks in August. The icebreaker will deploy two smaller vessels that will carry sonar equipment on board. :clap

"There's little doubt that Franklin's lost ships are probably the most sought-after shipwrecks in Canada," Ryan Harris, a senior marine archeologist with Parks Canada, told CBC News on Monday.

Ships may be intact
Historians have been fascinated with Franklin's doomed 1845 journey to the Northwest Passage, but previous search expeditions have not found the Erebus and Terror.

The Parks Canada search team will focus this summer on the waters southwest of King William Island in the Queen Maud Gulf, where Inuit oral history suggests the ships may have sunk intact.

"One of the ships drifted to the west and was crushed in ice," said Inuit historian Louis Kamookak of Gjoa Haven, Nunavut, who has been working with the federal team.

"The other ship managed to go down the channel towards the southwest of King William Island into the safer waters, where there's less current and the ice movement is a lot calmer in the area in the summer," he added.

The federal searches were in the same area for six weeks in 2008, primarily mapping out the ocean floor. Harris said that this year searchers will use the sonar instruments to search for the wrecks.

Ships, crew disappeared
In 1845, Franklin had set out from England aboard the vessels, in hopes of exploring and mapping the Northwest Passage. Neither he nor any of his 128 crewmen ever returned.

By 1848, two ships and an overland party were searching for traces of the ships and crew.

A total of eight expeditions were launched in the 12 years following Franklin's disappearance, funded by a range of financial backers, from the British Navy to the Hudson's Bay Company to Franklin's wife.

Only traces of the expedition have ever been found.

"It's a very exciting story — Victorian, Gothic, a horror story that essentially unfolded across the Arctic expanse," Harris said.


http://www.cbc.ca/canada/north/story/2010/06/29/arctic-franklin-ships-search.html#ixzz0spd0aqWH

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Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:57 am
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Post Re: Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume
Arctic archaeologists find ship lost in search for Franklin expedition
Published Wednesday July 28th, 2010
Bob Weber, The Canadian Press

The HMS Investigator, abandoned in the ice in 1853, has been found in shallow water in Mercy Bay along the northern coast of Banks Island in Canada's western Arctic. :clap

"The ship is standing upright in very good condition," Marc-Andre Bernier, Parks Canada's head of underwater archaeology, said Wednesday. "It's standing in about 11 metres of water.

"This is definitely of the utmost importance. This is the ship that sailed the last leg of the Northwest Passage."

On shore, not far from the wreck, are what scientists believe are the graves of three British sailors.

The Investigator was one of many American and British ships sent out to search for the HMS Erebus and the Terror, the vessels commanded by Sir John Franklin in his doomed search for the Northwest Passage in 1845.

Read more here: http://www.canadaeast.com/news/article/1153294

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Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:54 am
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Post Re: Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume
Study debunks lead poisoning theory in Franklin mystery
Research suggests lead did not come from tin cans
The Canadian Press Posted: Apr 8, 2013 5:37 PM CT Last Updated: Apr 8, 2013 5:32 PM CT

A long-standing Arctic mystery has become even more baffling with research that appears to debunk a common theory about the demise of the Franklin expedition.

Chemists at the University of Western Ontario used an array of the latest analytic techniques to conclude that poorly made cans of food were not responsible for the lead that poisoned the officers and crew of the doomed 19th-century voyage to explore the Arctic.

"We'll probably never know what happened to the crew of the Franklin [expedition], so it will remain one of the great mysteries of Canadian history," said Prof. Ron Martin.

"Our resources fail to support the hypothesis that the lead in the bones came from tins, and I certainly believe it didn't."

snip

Martin's work, published in February in Applied Physics A, re-examined some of the bones using techniques developed since the original analysis. Martin and his colleagues concluded there was so much lead in the bones, and it was distributed so widely, that it couldn't have accumulated during the few months the men were at sea before they died.

Nor did he find areas where lead was concentrated, as there would be if the potent toxin had only recently been ingested.

"The wide distribution and high concentrations of lead in the measured bones is indicative of long-term exposure before the start of the expedition," says the paper.

"The lead distribution is essentially uniform as might be expected from lifetime lead ingestion. There is no evidence for a sudden massive increase in lead during the latter part of any individual's life."

snip

Read more here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/story/2013/04/08/north-franklin-lead-theory-study.html

Fascinating!

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Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:48 am
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Post Re: Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume
British ship from 1845 Franklin expedition found by Canada

Ship could be HMS Erebus or HMS Terror, both of which vanished on expedition to fabled Northwest Passage

Martin Williams

theguardian.com, Tuesday 9 September 2014 20.01 EDT

The grisly and mysterious tale of two British ships that disappeared in the Arctic in 1845 has baffled generations and sparked one of history's longest rescue searches. But now, more than 160 years later, Canadian divers have finally found the remains of one of the doomed Navy vessels.

Legend has it that sailors on board the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, who were chosen by the explorer Sir John Franklin, resorted to cannibalism after the ships became ice-bound in the Victoria Strait in the Arctic territory of Nunavut.

snip

Announcing the find, Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper said: "This is truly a historic moment for Canada. This has been a great Canadian story and mystery and the subject of scientists, historians, writers and singers, so I think we really have an important day in mapping the history of our country."

"Franklin's ships are an important part of Canadian history given that his expeditions, which took place nearly 200 years ago, laid the foundations of Canada's Arctic sovereignty," he said.

An image of the discovery shows the wooden vessel has remained largely intact, though the main mast has been sheared off. The ship was resting upright on the sea bed only 11 meters below the surface. Searchers used remotely operated underwater technology to find the ship on Sunday, although it remains unclear which of the two vessels it is. The discovery comes shortly after divers found an iron fitting from one of the boats.

The myths surrounding the Franklin expedition have helped make the vessels among the most sought-after prizes in marine archaeology.

snip

Read more here: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/09/british-ship-1845-franklin-expedition-found-canada

Way to go Canada! :clap :cadball

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Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:19 am
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Post Re: Search for Franklin's lost ships to resume
Yeah baby :cadguy :cadball

Stay out of the North Mr Putin :whip

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