The Australian National Maritime Museum teamed up with Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project to search Newport Harbour for the famous vessel and will announce their results at an event in NY on Friday at 5pm local time.
U.S. and Australian archaeologists hunting for Captain Cook's HMS Endeavour may have finally discovered its location on the east coast of America.
Peter Dexter, the chairman of the Australian National Maritime Museum, is travelling to the United States to attend the event, as will Australia's consul-general in New York, Alastair Walton. It joined about a dozen other British ships anchored in Newport Harbor, off Rhode Island, until a French fleet - outfitted with bigger guns - threatened to overtake the harbor in 1778. The team has found what appear to be 10 of the 13 transport ships, Abbass said earlier this year at the organization's annual meeting.
Countries including the US, Britain, New Zealand and Australia can all lay claim to the wreck being historically significant to their nation's story. To the west, across the Atlantic Ocean, unrest was brewing among a group of British colonies - but the royal navy's newest acquisition was intended for decidedly scientific purposes.
It was later renamed the Lord Sandwich and used as a troop transport and prison brig. After a spell delivering coal, the Admiralty bought it as a research vessel and in 1768 Cook took command.
Cook was chosen as the commander and departed Plymouth in August the same year, travelling through the Pacific Islands before arriving in New Zealand in September 1769.
The breakthrough, which could solve one of the greatest maritime mysteries, is the culmination of a 25-year hunt for the vessel off Newport, Rhode Island.
While final confirmation could come in time for the 250th anniversary of the arrival of the Endeavour in Australia, in 2020, it's very unlikely the wreck would be in any condition to make the final return journey to Australia.
Captain Cook's HMS Endeavour was the first European ship to reach Australia. "It is exciting. We are closing in".
Abbass said the ship could be excavated in time for next year's 250th anniversary of Cook's historic voyage to the east coast of Australia, now known as Botany Bay.
Despite the historical significance to Australia, it is likely the Endeavour, if found, will remain in Rhode Island. "Therefore, fundraising is ongoing for the artifact management facility needed to process, store, and display the artifacts that will emerge from the planned 2019 excavation".