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Blood and Water; The Archaeological Excavation and Historical Analysis of the Wreck of the Industry, A North-American Transport Sloop Chartered by the British Army at the End of the Seven Years War:  British Colonial Navigation and Trade to Supply Spanish Florida in the Eighteenth Century

Marianne Franklin
Ph.D.: December 2005
Chair: Hamilton
Nautical Archaeology Program

This dissertation reports on the location, excavation and analysis of a 1764 shipwreck site discovered near the coast of St. Augustine, Florida. Archaeological material recovered from the site during three field seasons co-directed by the author (1997-1999) is integrated with historical information to create a clearer picture of eighteenth-century trade, supply and navigation to St. Augustine (settled in 1565).

Recognizing the importance of the sea to the location, settlement, and occupation of St. Augustine, Southern Oceans Archaeological Research, Inc. (SOAR) combined archival research with a remote sensing survey to locate magnetic anomalies that might represent vessels lost during all periods of St. Augustine’s occupation. Test excavations in 1997 located a shipwreck site (No. 8SJ3478) in twenty feet of water offshore from the St. Augustine Lighthouse. Though no hull structure was uncovered, three anchors and eight cannons were recorded in situ. The cannons, anchors, and most of the artifacts recovered, were identified as belonging to the British empire during the reign of George II (1727- 1760). The location of the wreckage, as well as the recovered cargo, argues for the identification of the vessel lost at site 8SJ3478 as the Industry.

The Spanish withdrew both arms and inhabitants from Florida to Havana at the end of the Seven Years’ War. The Treaty of Paris ceded Florida to the British in 1763. The British Army headquartered in New York organized shipments of troops and supplies to East and West Florida. The Industry, under the command of iv Captain Daniel Lawrence, was one of four sloops detailed to serve as a transport to supply the British Florida garrisons. The Industry ran aground on the bar outside of St. Augustine’s harbour on May 6, 1764. The transport was carrying six-pound cannons, ammunition and artificer’s tools.

Further investigation of documents describing eighteenth-century trade and shipping to St. Augustine led to the discovery that the Lawrence family of sea captains provided a vital link between British New York and Spanish St. Augustine. An examination of the materials recovered from Site 8SJ3478 sheds light on exactly what a particular vessel carried during a period of transition in Florida’s history.

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