We are providing up close images of the wreck located around 4,000 feet below sea level on the ocean floor.
Work on the various artifacts from the Mardi Gras Shipwreck requires a lot of intense hands-on attention from the conservation staff at the Conservation Research Lab at Texas A&M University.
Here you see John and Vince working on the large concretion removed from the stern area of the wreck site. They are literally excavating the concretion within the controlled conditions of the lab. They are revealing, identifying, mapping, and preparing to remove artifacts to begin their individually determined conservation process.
This smaller concretion became dislodged from the larger stern concretion upon removal from the cradle in the L.A.R.T. when it arrived at the lab this summer. George has identified, mapped, and begun removing artifacts from this concretion. Of special significance within this concretion are the variety of organic materials found along with iron cannon shot and lead shot. These organic artifacts include a stiff bristle brush and, although part of the head of this brush has been damaged by worms, it still has the hole meant for the insertion of a handle. With this brush are paper, textile, and line that appears to be draped over and under other artifacts.
The spyglass/telescope recovered from the seafloor has already revealed the name and place of its manufacture. This information, inscribed on the brass lens tube under the wood sheath, was found by X-ray.
The cannon is lifted out of its storage vat and prepared to go into electrolytic reduction, the standard conservation treatment for iron artifacts used by the Conservation Research Lab. The cannon would have fired a 6-pound ball and, according to markings found on the gun, was made at the Clyde Iron Works in Scotland in 1797.