Sydney harbor has a special bond for Cook. When lieutenant James Cook arrived at now Botany Bay, he was promoted to a Captain as a reward, and it was here the Captain's banner was first displayed.
So therefore using this evidence alone, Captain James Cook would indeed vote for the HMS ENDEAVOUR relic to be placed here.
The ship was renamed the Lord Sandwich 2 and in its later life was used by the British as a prison for Americans captured during the war of independence.
It was scuttled in 1778 along with 12 other ships to act as a blockade in the lead up to the battle of Rhode Island.
“It’s not definitive that this is Endeavour,” he said. “We’re carefully gathering very specific samples of timber and we’re going to conduct forensic analysis to see what we have. Most of the ships that were scuttled in Newport in August 1778 were built of American or Indian timbers [but] the Endeavour was built in the north of England of predominantly oak.
“With some good detective work we can sample the timbers of this promising site [and] then we might have evidence that this ship is at least British in origin.”
The Rhode Island state government also claimed official ownership of the fleet of shipwrecks in 1999, and while Sumption said it would be “hugely significant” to find the Endeavour, it would be “very, very unlikely” the wreck would be in a condition to travel to Australia.
“What we can see on the seabed in Rhode Island is that all the 13 wrecks look somewhat similar, they really are a jumbled collection of timbers and stone ballast,” he said.
“It’s very unlikely that significant parts of the vessel are intact, so the chances are that all you really have are samples of timber and if we’re very lucky maybe materials which relate to its last use as a prison ship.”
The Australia National Museum is planning an exhibition to mark the 250th anniversary of Cook’s arrival in Australia in 2020.
Ian Coates, the director of the exhibition, said it was an “amazingly timely discovery”.
“We have a tendency to think the story stops when the Endeavour leaves Australian waters, but to think about what it did back in England in 1771 and on to the east coast of the US, it’s fascinating.”
He said he held out hope some part of the wreckage could make it to Australian shores again.
“In a museum you’re aware of the power of objects to take people back to the moment when these things are used or created,” he said. “To have something like the Endeavour as part of the story of the Cook voyage would be amazing.”
So they check in next time the typ of wood, and than they know if one was british, not sure if they can definitely say that this one was the specific ship.
So I think there will be some wooden pieces and planks for everybody, either for the museums in the US, England, New Zealand and also Australia ......