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Captain Cook's Ship Likely Found 230 Years After Sinking

| by Sheena Vasani
Earl of Pembroke, later HMS Endeavour, 1768Earl of Pembroke, later HMS Endeavour, 1768

Experts reveal they may have finally found Captain James Cook's famous ship off the coast of Rhode Island nearly 240 years after it sunk.

One of the most famous ships in naval history, The Endeavour sailed under Captain Cook in the 1770s to discover the East Coast of Australia, the Daily Mail reports.

The Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project (RIMAP), the group leading the investigation, said in a press release that it "now has an 80 to 100% chance that the Lord Sandwich is still in Newport Harbor, and because the Lord Sandwich was Capt. Cook's Endeavour, that means RIMAP has found her, too."

The Endeavour was later renamed Lord Sandwich and used to transport British troops during the American Revolution in 1778.

British soldiers blew up the ship hoping to create a blockade in the harbor to recapture the port city of Newport during the Battle of Rhode Island.

That was the last time it would be seen intact before the ship sunk. The remains would later be found off the coast of Newport, Rhode Island in Narragansett Bay.

Thirteen other ships may have also been discovered in the area as part of a large archaeological investigation.

"RIMAP has mapped 9 archaeological sites of the 13 ships that were scuttled in Newport Harbor in 1778 during the American Revolution," RIMAP said.

"One group of 5 ships included the Lord Sandwich transport, formerly Captain James Cook's Endeavour ... All of the 13 ships lost in Newport during the Revolution are important to American history, but it will be a national celebration in Australia when RIMAP identifies the Lord Sandwich ex Endeavour," RIMAP added.

“On May 4 RIMAP will describe its 2016 plans to confirm the 5th shipwreck in the limited study area, and will outline what must be done in the future to determine which of the 5 sites there is which ship,” the group added.

The day of the announcement is significant as it is Rhode Island’s 240th birthday.

Additionally, RIMAP notes, May 4 is just two months before the colonies together issued the official Declaration of Independence.

Sources: Daily Mail and RIMAP Press Release / Photo credit: National Library of Australia via Daily Mail

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