Tuesday, June 19 , 2018, 7:42 am | Fair 58º


Ghost Shipwrecks Recently Discovered off San Francisco’s Golden Gate

September 17, 2015 from 7:00pm

Lecture presented by Robert Schwemmer of NOAA

Where: Santa Barbara Maritime Museum, 113 Harbor Way, Santa Barbara, California
When: Thursday, September 17, 2015 at 7 pm
Members only Reception • 6:15 – 6:45 pm

Cost: Free (members), $10 (non-members).

To Register: Go to www.sbmm.org or call (805) 962-8404 x115

Lecture Series Sponsored by: Santa Barbara County Arts Commission, John C. Woodward, Silvio Di Loreto, D’Angelo’s Bakery and Jordano’s

Off the California coast is one of the greatest underwater maritime museums in the country. There are thousands of prehistoric and historic submerged sites waiting to be discovered. Recent discoveries include several shipwrecks at the entrance of the San Francisco Bay near the Golden Gate Bridge and offshore Farallon Islands. Robert Schwemmer, West Coast Regional Maritime Heritage Coordinator for NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries served as a principal investigator during these missions in 2014 and 2015, and will share his research revealing the final moments leading up to the sinking of these ships and the cutting edge technology used to record each wreck, one in nearly 3,000 feet of water. 

Robert coordinates and conducts archaeological surveys and research for the five National Marine Sanctuaries located along the Pacific West Coast. This work includes recording and mapping submerged sites utilizing SCUBA equipment, submersibles, remotely operated vehicles (ROV), and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV). Deep-water projects include working from a manned submersible to perform a site assessment of the shipwreck Montebello, a WWII era oil tanker located at a depth of 900 feet off Cambria, CA, that led to receiving the Award of Operational Merit from the United States Coast Guard for his exceptional service during this historic and unprecedented underwater assessment of the shipwreck. Expeditions utilizing ROVs in California waters include a site assessment of the shipwreck Pacbaroness, a bulk carrier located at a depth of 1,500 feet off Point Conception, as well as the first archaeological survey of the USS Macon, a 785-foot U.S. Navy dirigible lost off Point Sur and now resting in 1,500 feet of water.

Schwemmer has worked with other NOAA scientists on projects in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, the Arctic, the Great Lakes and assisted topside during the recovery of the gun turret from the civil war navy ship USS Monitor off Cape Hatteras, NC. More recently he has served as a principal investigator during discoveries new shipwrecks off the Golden Gate near San Francisco and offshore Farallon Islands. His discoveries and surveys in 2014 and 2015 include the passenger ships City of Chester, the City of Rio de Janeiro, termed the “Titanic of the Golden Gate,” the tramp steamer Selja off Point Reyes, the aircraft carrier USS Independence, and a 100 year-old seagoing mystery tug off the Farallon Islands. Schwemmer currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum and is the current President of the Los Angeles Maritime Museum Research Society.


Event Details

  • Organizer/Sponsor: SBMM
  • Starts: September 17, 2015 7:00pm
  • Location: Santa Barbara Maritime Museum
  • Website: http://www.sbmm.org