Expedition Costa Rica
The Program of Maritime Studies at East Carolina University (ECU) collaborated with the Costa Rica’s Centro de Buceo Embajadores y Embajadoras del Mar through a Memorandum of Agreement to offer a 2016 fall field school in conjunction with teaching a Nautical Archaeology Society (NAS) introduction and Part I course using shipwreck sites located in Cahuita National Park, as case studies. This website presents the preliminary results of joint work in progress, field methods, and research related to understanding the marine environment, cultural and natural transformation processes and interpreting the artifacts recovered from the site to assist in further identifying the two sites known respectively as the Brick and Cannon sites that are possible candidates for two Danish slave ships Christianus Quintus and Fredericus Quartus wrecked at Punta Cahuita in 1710.
Two faculty members, a staff archaeologist, dive safety officer and 6 graduate students Tyler Ball, Tyler Caldwell, Sean Cox, Kristina Fricker, Dorothy Sprague, and Annie Wright worked with 12 Costa Rican Centro students Royer Coloner, Tygo Constant, Esteban Gallo,Alexandre Koblensky, Sigrid Lahmann, Anderson Rodríguez, Kevin Rodríguez, Pete Stevens, Julio Ugalde, and Facundo Viachico. ECU faculty and graduate students mentored the Centro members as part of a local capacity building and stewardship initiative. Costa Ricans, Dr. Maria Suarez and PADI instructor Frederic Wright, lead this organization. The Centro is unique in offering heritage and ecology awareness programs for a wide spectrum of age and ethnic groups. Maritime archaeology and underwater heritage is a recent addition in lessons titled Expedicion Galeoneos that successfully integrates hypotheses about the Punta Cahuita wrecks as a teaching technique.