Clotilda exploration finishes as we get the first look at the ship wreckage

Researchers are taking a piece of history that’s been underwater for 150 years and bringing it to the surface.
Published: May. 12, 2022 at 10:24 PM CDT
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) -We’re now getting our first look at some brand new images of the shipwreck Clotilda.

A 10-day exploration on the Mobile River just wrapped up by the Alabama Historical Commission.

Researchers are taking a piece of history that’s been underwater for one hundred and fifty years and bringing it to the surface.

A meeting was held in Africatown Thursday night with room full of questions, as everyone got the chance to see for the first time what’s been on the bottom of the Mobile River.

The Clotilda, the last known slave ship to come into the United States is slowly being brought up piece by piece.

”While we don’t have all the answers for Clotilda yet we have a lot of hard data that’s going to really start to give us some answers,” Maritime Archeologist Jim Delgado said.

Some of those findings included the steering wheel of the ship and also learning that the ship is now broken into two pieces.

When the Clotilda made it to the area in 1860, it carried more than 100 slaves.

A presence researchers say they felt even underwater.

“This wreck really actually spoke to me,” Jay Haigler, Diving with a Purpose, said. “It was 3D and once you touched it you felt not only the souls of our ancestors but the energy of the presence.”

soon all the findings brought up will be placed on display in a museum.

Researchers say more discoveries are on the way, the work hasn’t ended yet.

The team will continue to collect data over the next year and find the best way, to not only learn, but protect and preserve the Clotilda.


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