The 2018 Discovery of "Lady Lex", the First American Aircraft Carrier Casualty

Author(s): Kervin Michaud; Alexis Catsambis

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Developing Standard Methods, Public Interpretation, and Management Strategies on Submerged Military Archaeology Sites" session, at the 2019 annual meeting of the Society for Historical Archaeology.

Three thousand meters below the surface of the Coral Sea lies one of the earliest U.S. aircraft carriers. USS Lexington (CV-2), alongside 35 of her aircraft and 216 of her crew, was lost in May of 1942 during the Battle of the Coral Sea, the first engagement between ships that never came within sight of each other. In March of 2018, Paul Allen's Vulcan located the wreck and several of her aircraft during a dedicated survey, documenting the site in high definition video. The Naval History and Heritage Command, in collaboration with the Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division, initiated a review of the data provided by Vulcan leading to a preliminary interpretation of the site and an associated battle damage analysis. The results of the study are informing an evolving management approach to a series of discoveries made in recent years in the field of deep-water exploration.

Cite this Record

The 2018 Discovery of "Lady Lex", the First American Aircraft Carrier Casualty. Kervin Michaud, Alexis Catsambis. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, St. Charles, MO. 2019 ( tDAR id: 448990)


Temporal Keywords
World War II

Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 216