Researchers on Horseback Find Bits of 1765 Shipwreck
Most of the 193 aboard survived the wreck, spent 2 months ashore
By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 10, 2014 10:22 AM CDT
Tierra del Fuego is seen on a graphic released by the National Geographic Society.   (AP Photo/National Geographic Society)

(Newser) – In a tale of archaeology with a bit of an Indiana Jones ring to it, researchers have identified new pieces of a 1765 shipwreck off Argentina—while traveling 125 miles of Tierra del Fuego on horseback. IANS reports that the team was on the hunt for pre-Columbian sites on the archipelago, which sits off the southernmost point of the mainland, roughly 2,200 miles from Buenos Aires. They uncovered wood, metal, and seven cannonballs from La Purisima Concepcion, a Spanish ship that was en route to Callao, Peru, and went down on Jan. 10 before reaching Cape Horn.

The shipwreck, the oldest known in those parts, didn't end with all those aboard meeting a watery grave: Instead, many of the 193 who sailed on the Concepcion survived and spent two months ashore, where they lived among the natives and constructed smaller boats that took them to Buenos Aires, reports AFP, which adds that the archaeologists were able to determine exactly where the ship went down—though they're not telling. "It is not a galleon loaded with gold and pearls like in the movies; it's just a supply ship," says the lead archaeologist. "But we have chosen not to disclose the exact location so as not to encourage anyone to go souvenir hunting." Next up: a search for the castaways' campsite. (Click for news of another shipwreck in a different ocean.)

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Showing 3 of 9 comments
CaptainStubing
Mar 11, 2014 7:53 PM CDT
And now, the rest of the story: "The researchers were horrified to find out that they had been standing in the middle of a hot movie set after the irate director yelled "cut" and told them to put down the shipwreck props. The confused researchers and their horses were then escorted from the premises."
viva_yo
Mar 10, 2014 5:00 PM CDT
I remember my 9 y/o mind racing when the hull of a large wooden ship washed up on the Jersey Shore. My guardians said "it wasn't old". Then I read not ago that wooden hulls went out as steam replaced sails, around mid to late19th century, something I hadn't thought about in years. It could have been an very old, large fishing boat or a remnant of a battle ship from the Revolutionary war
FarmerMichael
Mar 10, 2014 2:43 PM CDT
I can see why not to tell "where." The gal that found the first dino eggs in Montana near Judith Gap had the State desire her family rock shop for a parking lot so others could see where the eggs were found...no good deed goes unpunished in some circles.