New details about Sir John Franklin’s doomed Arctic expedition continue to be discovered as archeologists examine two sunken wrecks in Nunavut’s waters.
Following the announcement that the United Kingdom would transfer the shipwrecks to the country that offered them a final Arctic resting place, Parks Canada has released a new trove of underwater images of HMS Terror and HMS Erebus taken this past summer.
New images confirm that the Terror’s anchor remains on board, disproving earlier speculation from 2016 that the ship was “at anchor” when it sank—another important detail as researchers determine the timeline of events in this historic tragedy.
As well, Parks Canada says it has catalogued 64 artifacts from the Erebus, but added that no artifacts were removed from either the Erebus or Terror during the 2017 expedition.
“Through dives, Parks Canada’s Underwater Archaeology team was able to locate previously unseen artifacts, including wine bottles, on the wreck [of the Erebus],” said Parks Canada communications officer Meaghan Bradley.
The British government’s proposed transfer of the wrecks to Canada would be in exchange for “a small sample of artifacts,” the United Kingdom said in a statement.
What will be contained in that sample of artifacts has yet to be specified but Parks Canada said it “looks forward to working with the United Kingdom in the very near future to finalize the details of the artifact transfer.”