The annals of Arctic exploration include lost ships whose crews came to unknown ends. Centuries of efforts to unravel those mysteries are producing important finds, including a big one, that came this week.
Here’s the lead from an exclusive report filed by Don Martin.
MERCY BAY, N.W.T. – The historic ship whose crew discovered Canada’s Northwest Passage has been found 155 years after it was abandoned and sank in this oft-frozen Arctic bay atop isolated Banks Island.
The wreck of HMS Investigator was detected in shallow water within days of Parks Canada archeologists launching their ambitious search for the 422-tonne ship from this chilly tent encampment on the Beaufort Sea shoreline.
In this article for the National Post, Martin alludes to that larger issue:
Environment Minister Jim Prentice, who arrived at the camp on Tuesday, said that finding a relic linked to the discovery of the Northwest Passage represents a reasserted Canadian claim to Arctic sovereignty.
“It’s fundamental to Canadian sovereignty in the North,” he said in an interview.
“[A]nd the tragic tale of Investigator is one of the most amazing stories of Arctic history. It’s a tale of incredible determination and suffering,” Mr. Prentice said.