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INA Webinars

From time to time, INA offers the “Wednesday Webinar,” in which archaeologists and directors of INA-supported projects deliver online presentations featuring their recent research. The Wednesday Webinars are open to everyone.

INA Webinars are recorded only with the permission of the presenter(s). Check out the upcoming INA webinars and past recordings at the bottom of the page.

Recording an Mtepe and the
Social Construction of Dhows in Zanzibar

Akshay Sarathi, archaeologist and Lecturer at Texas A&M University and Founder of the Seafaring in East Africa (SEA) Project, has been conducting fieldwork in Zanzibar for the past decade. In this INA Webinar, Sarathi will share the results of his INA-supported ethnographic ship research, which focuses on traditional Dhows, Mtepe, and Ngalawa boats, and the community of craftsmen who build them. This webinar was presented on May 1, 2024.

Northern Light: A Daggerboard Scow-Schooner
in Lake Ontario

On March 27th, Carrie Sowden, alumna of the Nautical Archaeology Program and Director of Research at the National Museum of the Great Lakes, presented a webinar entitled “Northern Light: A Daggerboard Scow-Schooner in Lake Ontario.” Carrie summarizes the results of 2023 INA-funded fieldwork carried out by the National Museum of the Great Lakes and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The scow-schooner has been tentatively identified as Northern Light, which spent its life ferrying goods between the islands and towns of eastern Lake Ontario before sinking in 1916. Unusual construction features include large hatches with no vertical supports and a daggerboard.

The Hellenistic Shipwreck at Serçe Limanı, Turkey:
Past, Present, and Future

This month we feature Orkan Köyağasıoğlu (INA‘s Bodrum Research Center) on the Renewed Excavation of the Hellenistic Shipwreck at Serçe Limanı, Turkey. Between 1978 and 1980, an INA team directed by Cemal Pulak carried out partial excavation of the wreck, which dates from the third century B.C. Regrettably, the threat of a rockslide meant that the excavation had to be left unfinished. In 2023, INA and the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology returned to the site with modern capabilities to resume the excavation. This webinar was presented on December 6, 2023.

The 19th-Century Shipwreck
at Cape Urdoviza, Bulgaria

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to dive in the Black Sea? INA Affiliated Scholar Kroum Batchvarov, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Maritime Studies at the University of Connecticut, discusses the results of the 2023 field season at Cape Urdoviza, Bulgaria, where his team is excavating the remains of a ship that sank in the 19th (?) century. Finds from this season include pieces of an Ottoman (?) folding table, ceramic jugs, coffee cups, a brazier, and a carved wooden plaque with inscriptions that suggest the ship was owned by Christians. This webinar was presented on November 29, 2023.

Recording Defence:
A Privateer from the American Revolutionary War

INA Affiliated Scholar Warren Riess (Professor Emeritus, University of Maine), discusses the American Revolutionary War privateer Defence. In the summer of 1779, cornered by the British navy, the Defence‘s crew scuttled the ship and walked home to man another privateer, leaving the hull and hundreds of artifacts to settle into the cove’s soft mud, where it remained untouched until its excavation in the 1970s and ‘80s. Warren presents the ship’s history and INA’s archaeological investigation, including the present project for a two-volume final publication. This webinar was presented on October 18, 2023.

Bugeyes on the Bay:
Researching Chesapeake Bay Oyster Boats

Patrick Boyle, a Ph.D. student in the Nautical Archaeology Program at Texas A&M University and a recipient of an INA Discovery Fund, presents on the results of his summer fieldwork in the Chesapeake Bay, where he is investigating the historical vernacular watercraft of the region, including the “bugeye,” which was designed and built specifically for the oyster industry of the mid-19th and early-20th centuries. This webinar was presented on September 27, 2023.

The Ma’agan Mikhael B Shipwreck:
Excavation of a Lateen-Rigged Merchantman

2022 Claude Duthuit Archaeology Grant Recipient, Deborah Cvikel, who is an Associate Professor in the Department of Maritime Civilizations at the University of Haifa in Israel, presents on the Ma‘agan Mikhael B ship, a 7th–8th century eastern Mediterranean lateen-rigged merchantman discovered on the Carmel coast in 2005. Cvikel’s team has uncovered a well-preserved assemblage of diverse artifacts and is conducting an in-depth study of the ship’s surviving hull remains. This webinar was presented on May 31, 2023.

The Battle of the Egadi Islands Project:
Past, Present, and Future

April’s Wednesday Webinar, delivered by INA General Counsel and Chairman of RPM Nautical Foundation, Jim Goold, was about the Battle of the Egadi Islands Project. This project began 20 years ago as a partnership between RPM Nautical and the Soprintendenza del Mare – Regione Sicilia in order to locate the site of Rome’s naval victory over Carthage, which ended the First Punic War in 241 BCE. Since then, the team has documented 25 naval rams, increasing by a factor of five the number of ancient rams available for study. This talk highlights the past, present, and future of the project and presents new finds from the site. This webinar was presented on April 26, 2023.

The Ronson Ship:
An Early 18th-Century Merchant Ship

INA Affiliated Scholar Warren Riess co-directed the excavation of an early 18th-century colonial merchant vessel initially known as the Ronson Ship in Lower Manhattan. Riess shares the results of more than four decades of post-excavation research and analysis that led him to identify the ship and uncover its role in the developing the 18th-century Atlantic World. This important vessel is answering questions about colonial ship design, the merchant trade, and the development of early New York, Virginia, and Charleston. Riess’ first volume about the project, The Ship That Held Up Wall Street, won Mystic Seaport’s 2015 John Gardner Award for significant contributions to maritime history. The second volume is scheduled to be released in June 2023. This webinar was presented on March 22, 2023.

Steamboats of the Upper Yukon River, Canada:
INA-124 / Yukon River Steamboat Survey

On Wednesday, February 22, 2023, INA Research Associate John Pollack presented on the Yukon River Steamboat Survey. Since 2007, John (Project Director) and his team have documented the archaeological remains of the Klondike Gold Rush in the form of 30 field sites and three heritage ships in the Yukon, British Columbia, and Alaska. John reviews the history of the Klondike Gold Rush, the international shipbuilding boom that accompanied it, and the current range of field sites. Hull architecture and machinery variation will be discussed along with the culture of reuse of machinery and hull fittings, and the evolution of the Northwestern river steamboat.

Seventeenth-Century Shipboard Food:
The Ship Biscuit and Salted Beef Research Project

Were sailors ship-shape before the advent of canning and refrigeration, or were they in fact a sickly bunch? Grace Tsai (Texas A&M University) discusses replicating shipboard food – salted beef and pork, ship biscuit, beer and wine, and other provisions – using archaeological and historical data. Grace’s team simulated an oceanic voyage by storing food in casks on Elissa, the 1877 tall ship docked in Galveston, Texas. By analyzing the food in a laboratory for their nutritional and microbiological data, the team got a glimpse into the unique food situation and health of past sailors during the Age of Sail. This webinar was presented on January 25, 2023.

The Sadana Island Shipwreck:
An 18th-century markab

INA Research Associate Cheryl Ward, recipient of the 2022 George and Ann Bass Publication Grant, discusses the 18th-century shipwreck at Sadana Island, Egypt, excavated by INA-Egypt in the 1990s. The Sadana Island ship was a large sailing vessel called a markab, likely owned and operated by Muslims engaged in the profitable Red Sea trade that brought Chinese porcelain, mother-of-pearl shells, incense, and coffee to Egypt and the Ottoman Empire. This webinar was presented on December 14, 2022.

Saving the Equator:
The Many Lives and End of a 19th-century Schooner

Katie Custer Bojakowski, Instructional Assistant Professor in the Nautical Archaeology Program at Texas A&M University, introduces the Equator, a 19th-century schooner designed and built by Matthew Turner and chartered by Robert Louis Stevenson for his second cruise of Samoa. Converted to a steam tender in 1897 and again to a diesel tugboat in 1915, Equator’s many lives demonstrate how well-built wooden hulls were adapted to suit the changing economy of the Pacific Northwest. Katie is urgently assembling a team to record Equator, which is scheduled for demolition in July 2023. This webinar was presented on November 16, 2022.

Gaspé Maritime Archaeology Project:
Preliminary Results from the Field

Carolyn Kennedy discusses her ongoing fieldwork in Québec, where she is co-directing the Gaspé Maritime Archaeology Project. Gaspé, Québec, Canada was historically one of the first points in North America explored and settled by Europeans during the Age of Discovery. The ships that subsequently frequented the region’s waters originated from all over Europe and visited year after year for centuries. In this webinar, Carolyn details her investigation of Gaspé’s maritime archaeology and history and her search for evidence of those European visitors in the form of shipwrecks over the course of two field seasons. This webinar was presented on October 26, 2022.

Tantura Lagoon, Israel:
A Cove of Many Shipwrecks

Tantura Lagoon is one of the few natural rocky harbors along Israel’s Mediterranean coast. It has served as a port facility for Tel Dor and its immediate region since the settlement’s founding, circa 2000 B.C. The cove is shallow and covered with a constantly shifting sand blanket that buries shipwrecks and their cargoes, protecting them from biological attack, storms and currents, making it an ideal environment for shipwreck archaeology. From 1994 to 1996 Shelley Wachsmann (INA / Texas A&M University) directed exploration of shipwrecks and related artifacts in the cove as head of a joint expedition fielded by INA and The University of Haifa’s Center for Maritime Studies. The project revealed the remains of seven previously unknown hulls ranging in date from the fourth to the 18th centuries A.D. This webinar was presented on September 21, 2022.

Inland Waters & The Legacy of the Erie Canal:
Historical insights from Shipwrecks

On April 27, 2022, INA Affiliated Scholar Art Cohn discussed the early vessels of the Erie Canal. The Erie Canal system opened to vessel traffic in the fall of 1825, and from the very beginning the Canal was successful beyond expectations. The first boats built to transit the new canal moved both passengers and freight, with the “packet boats” revolutionizing passenger travel until the railroads came. In 2018, in anticipation of the Erie Canal Bicentennial in 2025, a new underwater survey was initiated in Seneca Lake, once connected to three early canals. Art provides a brief historical overview and report on the findings to date.

Phoenix Project:
The World’s Oldest Steamboat Wreck

On March 30, 2022, INA Research Associate Dr. George Schwarz (Naval History and Heritage Command) presented an INA Wednesday Webinar on the earliest steamboat wreck Phoenix, which sank in Lake Champlain in 1819 and was discovered in the late 1970s. The hull remains were intact for study except for one critical element: there were no signs of the vessel’s iconic paddle wheels. For decades, historians were puzzled by the absence of the vessel’s iconic paddle wheels, but two years ago, a local Vermonter discovered two large discoid objects half-buried in the lakebed a quarter mile away. This presentation relays the history of Phoenix, its archaeological discoveries, and introduces the recent INA investigations of these newly found artifacts – possibly the world’s oldest surviving paddle wheels.

Fifty Years of Nautical Archaeology:
INA in Virginia

On February 23, 2022, INA Scholar in Residence Dr. John Broadwater (Founder & President, Spritsail Enterprises) presented INA’s Wednesday Webinar entitled Fifty Years of Nautical Archaeology: INA in Virginia.” In 1973, INA was newly incorporated and needed to locate shipwrecks that could be excavated in the coming years. INA Founder George Bass (1932-2021) planned a survey to follow ancient trade routes along the southern coast of Turkey. Broadwater participated as sonar operator, diver, and videographer, but neither he nor Bass knew that the 1973 survey would bring them together again in 1976 on a project in Virginia.

The Classical Shipwreck at Tektaş Burnu, Turkey:
An Overview

INA President Dr. Deborah Carlson delivers a joint ARIT-INA-KUDAR webinar about the Classical Greek shipwreck at Tektaş Burnu, Turkey. This small merchant ship was transporting a cargo of wine, pine tar, and Greek ceramics when it sank off the Aegean coast of Turkey around 425 B.C. Carlson helped INA Founder George Bass (1932-2021) excavate the Tektaş Burnu wreck between 1999 and 2001. To view this webinar with closed captioning, click here. This webinar was presented on January 26, 2022.

The Santo Hieronimo Excavation in Croatia:
Updates from the Field

2020 Claude Duthuit Archaeology Grant Recipients José Casabán (INA) and Irena Radić Rossi (University of Zadar/INA) updated us on their recent fieldwork in Croatia. The Santo Hieronimo Research Project continues investigations initiated in the 1970s by Anica Kisić (Maritime Museum of Dubrovnik). Since 2014, the team has focused on the excavation of Santo Hieronimo, which sank in 1576 in the bay of Suđurađ on the island of Šipan. The team aims to develop a working model of Santo Hieronimo based on archaeological data and 16th-century historical sources to provide an accurate representation of its original design and construction. This webinar was presented on December 8, 2021.

The Shipwreck at El Sec:
Preliminary Results from 2021

This Wednesday Webinar was presented by Carlos de Juan (University of Valencia). Excavated in the 1970s, the 4th-century B.C. El Sec shipwreck is known for its extensive cargo of Greek pottery marked with Greek and Punic graffiti. The use of explosives and subsequent looting led many to conclude that little was left on the site. The 2021 season was supported in part by INA’s Claude Duthuit Archaeology Grant. This webinar was presented on October 27, 2021.

Revealing Santo António de Tanná 40 Years Later:
A Progress Report

Scholar Jeremy Green, former Head of Maritime Archaeology at the Western Australia Museum, discusses the digital reinterpretation of 35mm photographs taken 40 years ago during excavation of the Portuguese frigate Santo António de Tanná, which capsized at Mombasa, Kenya, in 1697.  The Mombasa Wreck was excavated in the late 1970s by a team from INA and the National Museums of Kenya.  These efforts to generate a 3D model of the entire site are supported in part by INA’s George and Ann Bass Publication Grant. This webinar was presented on September 29, 2021.

The Cape Gelidonya Shipwreck:
Old Ship, New Methods

The Late Bronze Age shipwreck at Cape Gelidonya, Turkey, where George Bass started it all in 1960, keeps on giving. Seven members of the current research team briefly present what they are learning from the discoveries made on the seabed in the 1980s, 1990s, and 2010, and in the laboratories by means of scientific and 3D analysis. This Wednesday Webinar was presented by Nicolle Hirschfeld (Trinity University) and the Cape Gelidonya team, Nicholas Blackwell (Indiana University), Joseph Lehner (University of Sydney), Emre Kuruçayırlı (Boğaziçi University). Samuel Martin and Lucy Bowland (University of Arkansas), and Dominique Langis-Barsetti (University of Toronto). This webinar was presented on May 26, 2021.

The Sloop Boscawen and the King’s Shipyard:
Mid-18th Century Shipwrecks in Lake Champlain

The sloop Boscawen was built during the Seven Years’ War as part of a British campaign to counter the French presence in the Champlain Valley. Using Boscawen as a focal point, this presentation explores how colonial shipwrights designed, built, and rigged early sailing vessels for use on Lake Champlain and how Boscawen’s hull construction compares to other watercraft built in northeastern North America during the eighteenth century. This Wednesday Webinar was presented by recent Texas A&M doctoral NAP graduate, Dan Bishop. This webinar was presented on April 28, 2021.

Upcoming Webinars

All webinars take place at 12:00 CT unless otherwise stated. If you have ideas or suggestions for an upcoming INA Webinar, send them to us at