Geographe Bay Remote-Sensing Survey

Research Projects | Updated 4 years ago

Sunset on a beach
Geographe bay sunset hossen27.jpg
Photo by Hossen27, Creative Commons – Attribution-Non-Commercial 2.0 Generic

In February 2009, the department of Maritime Archaeology undertook a remote-sensing survey of Geographe Bay in Western Australia. The main objective of this fieldwork was the search for the US whalers Governor Endicott (1840) and Halycon (1844).

No promising sites were found in the search area for these two US whalers; it is believed that modern boat moorings are in the area of the wrecks that would mask any likely targets.

It is, however, known from historical records that another American whaler Geffrard was lost on 12 June 1875 in the vicinity of Quindalup Jetty. Archdeacon's map of the area, made in 1876, marks a wreck north-east of Quindalup jetty. A magnetometer survey of this area has indicated a large magnetic anomaly about 500 m south of the position calculated from the 1876 Archdeacon map. This magnetic anomaly may be the Geffrard wreck site, but needs further assessment as there is no evidence of a wreck on the surface. The shipwreck may be buried and test excavations may provide more conclusive evidence of the site's identification in the near future.