It comes as no surprise that I am excited to be able to add a new page to my website regarding Clive Cussler's efforts to find the remains of the Bonhomme Richard off Flamborough Head on the east coast.
I was so pleased to get notification during the winter from both Clive and Dirk of another expedition. To update the website I asked for a more recent photograph of Clive and I am grateful for the photograph of Clive in front of his "Jaguar XK 120."
Dirk and his team will return invigorated, looking to build on last year expanding on the results that have been scoured over during the winter, with the search will begin earnest in Grimsby as last years did. There are some new developments I am not at liberty to divulge, save it promises to be an interesting year.
To add to these pages I would like to include news of another book from the Cussler stable, this time from one of Clive's daughters Dayna.
The book “Built for Adventure,” surrounds the “Classic Automobiles of Clive Cussler and Dirk Pitt.” Those who want to savour in such a unique collection for themselves have but to travel to his museum in Arvada close to Denver, Colorada, however for those of us that cannot can experience Clive's extensive collection of classic cars in this book.
The Clive Cussler Museum is dedicated to the preservation of astounding rare and vintage automobiles from all over the world and the extensive collection has over 100 vehicles, ranging from 1906 to 1965.
Dirk has indicated that the cover well change but that the present one is quite a nice one with which I have to agree, Amazon (US & UK) have the book available for pre – order. For people like me who cannot get to the museum it is undoubtedly the next best thing, well done Dayna!
Ocean Technology Foundation - 2011 Expedition
The OTF have once again confirmed its involvement in another search for the elusive Bonhomme Richard, Flagship of John Paul Jones. The search team are leaving for an expedition to investigate some of the targets found during the 2010 mission. It has called on for the public's support to ensure that they can maximize its time at sea and the best chance for success! The Ocean Technology Foundation, is a nonprofit based in Mystic, CT.
In July with the news of the OTF unveiling another search I set about trawling the internet for any scamp piece of information and I am hopeful that the following is found to accurate, I do though appreciate the way in the internet can present non factual data.
Here in Whitby we have a contingent of shipping / maritime enthusiasts that share information and photographs. A recent piece of news revealed that a US Naval vessel was due to moor off the coast of Scarborough on the 16th July for a change of crew. It was an interesting revelation especially with the imminent summer period when the OTF team have mounted their own expeditions. The vessel was revealed as the USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51) a Safeguard class salvage ship, the second United States Navy ship to bear the name. When the ship was decommissioned it was transferred to the Military Sealift Command on January 19, 2006 where it subsequently underwent a shipyard period for conversion for operation by civilian mariners. Last year the USNS Henson (T-AGS-63) used by the OTF also came from the same stable, therefore adding to the possibility of the USNS Grasp being this years vessel.
The prospect of seeing the vessel for myself was an exciting one, my wife and I chose to take a trip out on one of the many excursion boats that run out of Scarborough harbour, usually for trips around the bay. In the past whenever there is any Naval activity off the coast and the weather is suitable the boats change to motoring out and if possible around the ship subject to any exclusion zone limits. On this occasion though the weather outlook was quite poor, and a trip doubtful. We managed to get a ride out on one of the thrilling speed boats and took some photographs, one of which I have added below.
The ship was clearly marked as P283 and was later confirmed as HMS Mersey, the fifth and current HMS Mersey a River class offshore patrol vessel belonging to Royal Navy which seems to leave its identification unchallenged. Those we spoke to at Scarborough also believed it to be an American naval ship, it turned however, that the ship was on scene earlier in the day. I have recently added a new page to this website detailing the USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51) Rescue / Salvage Ship and hope to be able to acquire permission to host some photographs of the USNS Grasp in time.