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Author Topic: Fabled Victorian Franklin Arctic ship found.  (Read 1154 times)
Rockula
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« on: September 09, 2014, 04:46:37 pm »

One of two British explorer ships that vanished in the Arctic more than 160 years ago has been found, Canada's prime minister says.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-29131757
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James Harrison
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« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2014, 06:24:02 pm »

This I think is outstanding news.  Erebus or Terror are the most famous arctic wrecks yet to be discovered, and the fate of the Franklin expedition one of the great mysteries of the Victorian era.   
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« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2014, 08:07:48 pm »

A time when anyone could sign up for exploration, discovery and not have to do a 'risk assessment' or get sponsorship.
Let's hope the names of every crew member lives on.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2014, 08:56:04 pm »

The really, really interesting thing is that because of the low salinity and temperature of the water, the ship looks to be very well preserved.  This makes it possible to start to look at what happened after the ships were frozen into the ice.  We have found remnants of the expedition from early on- burial mounds from crew members who died before the ships were frozen in- and we have found various remnants from the last stages of the expedition, after the ships were abandoned and the crews embarked on a futile march south.  In between the two we have only hearsay- inuit who talk of their forebears boarding hulks, being told to avoid one or the other of them, tales of cannibalism....

The discovery of one of the wrecks means that this missing piece in the story can be investigated- when and why were the ships abandoned?  Were they abandoned when supplies began to run low, or did the ice damage them to the point where the crews decided to take their chances out in the open before that happened? What attempts were made to free the ships from the ice- empty coal bunkers and masts, spars and rigging strewn around the wreck might suggest the engines were run and sails set to try to force an opening through, whilst finding coal within the wreck and the rigging stowed away might suggest a decision to settle down and wait for a thaw.

And then of course there is the fact that the wreck and its contents are a time capsule from the 1840s.  It will be quite instructive I think looking at what the crew left behind inside the ship when they abandoned it.     
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« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2014, 10:24:10 pm »

Indeed. This will be a wonderful opportunity, and one that bears close watching.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2014, 04:46:53 pm »

There is an interesting piece about the first dives on the wreckage here.  Now we know where one is, surely it can't be too long before the other is found?
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Rockula
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« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2014, 07:48:48 pm »

There is an interesting piece about the first dives on the wreckage here.  Now we know where one is, surely it can't be too long before the other is found?


Thanks James.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2016, 04:57:43 pm »

It only took them two years....

Now HMS Terror has been found too, but as is the way with such things it raises more questions than answers. 

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Atterton
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« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2016, 06:16:21 pm »

Let us hope no sleeping eldritch horrors will be found to have caused this.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2016, 07:19:27 pm »

Let us hope no sleeping eldritch horrors will be found to have caused this.

I understand that the Far North is the realm of the Tuunbaq.  I for one would welcome living in a world where Dan Simmons' The Terror is historic fact. 
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Crescat Scientia
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« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2016, 06:31:17 pm »

The condition of the second ship, the Terror, is so pristine as to be remarkable.  Even the windows remain intact.

It also calls into question all hitherto accepted narratives of what happened.  Nothing about the two ships matches what was told about the sailors' actions.
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