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The Philadelphia Gunboat Research Initiative

2024 Field Season

On October 11, 1776, Benedict Arnold led an outnumbered American fleet against British naval forces at Valcour Bay, Lake Champlain. The battle resulted in several lost American gunboats, including Philadelphia and Royal Savage. Salvaged in the 1930s, both boats are incomplete, and the submerged battlefield still holds many artifacts relating to this famous event. This project aims to expand previous surveys of the area and search out missing pieces that will help fill the gaps in our knowledge of these boats’ construction.

The Institute of Nautical Archaeology and the Nautical Archaeology Program is collaborating with the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, the US Navy Naval History and Heritage Command’s Underwater Branch, and consulting with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History on this project.

Students can apply to join this project by clicking the button below.

Download Application: Philadelphia Gunboat Research Initiative