Initial Deepwater Archaeological Survey and Assessment of the Atomic Target Vessel US Independence (CVL22)
A ‘cruise of opportunity’ provided by The Boeing Company, which wished to conduct a deepwater survey test of their autonomous underwater vehicle, Echo Ranger, resulted in the first archaeological survey of the scuttled aircraft carrier, USS Independence, in the waters of Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary in March 2015. While a preliminary effort, and not comprehensive, the survey confirmed that a feature charted at the location was Independence, and provided details on the condition of the wreck. At the same time, new information provided through declassified government reports provide more detail on Independence’s use as a naval test craft for radiological decontamination as well as its use as a repository for radioactive materials at the time of its scuttling in 1951. The wreck is historically significant, but also of archaeological significance as an artifact of the early years of the atomic age and of the Cold War.
Cite this Record
Initial Deepwater Archaeological Survey and Assessment of the Atomic Target Vessel US Independence (CVL22). James Delgado, Kelley Elliott, Frank Cantelas, Robert Schwemmer. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434692)
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min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;
Individual & Institutional Roles
Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology