Friday, October 20, 2006
The doors to the Cinnamon Bay Archaeological Lab were thrown open for the first time this season. Ken, Susanna, and I have started to unpack the exhibits to get the lab ready for visitors, and two of the historic bottles found last week have been cleaned for display. One has been identified as a Gordon’s gin bottle (with a funky hog’s head design on the front), but we’ll have to do some homework to ascertain its age. It can’t be older than 1918 because of its color, which tells us it is not associated with the shipwreck.
Today, we journeyed out to Hassel Island with two rangers to familiarize them with the island’s extensive cultural resources (so that they can protect them). Almost from the beginning of European expansion into the New World Hassel Island has been associated with the early Spanish, pirates and English privateers. The island becomes even more important as commerce expands and serves as the midway stopover for ships traveling from Europe, New England, to South America and the Pacific, making it very significant in the realm of maritime history. The oldest marine railway—Creque Marine Railway—is located on Hassel, as well as the only Napoleonic fortifications on American soil. The long-term plans for the island are to preserve the historic structures, in concert with archaeological and historical oversight. I think the public would love to see and learn about this fascinating island. Pictured above are two partially submerged anchors at the north shore of the island.