“When we first got it, we took it to stamp and coin fairs and it was a huge attraction with crowds flocking to see it,” he said.
When asked why he was selling it, he added: “Well, I’m 74 years old and it’s time to put some things down. I would like to see it in a museum where it can be shared with other people. In the United States, where they changed the name of the Shuttle to Endeavor, you would think there would be a lot of interest.
“The Australian National Maritime Museum was the lowest bidder when I bought it, unknown to me at the time.”
Before him, it was owned by David Worland, 80, of Canberra, interested in Hellenistic archeology. He got it from an antiquarian bookstore in Paddington, where he traded it in for some rare titles.
“When Banks learned that the hulk was about to be sunk off Newport, he sent someone there specifically to pick it up. I heard the reserve figure is $ 400,000. Those kinds of numbers don’t seem to worry anyone these days, ”Worland said.
With great fanfare, marine archaeologists announced in September 2018 that they believed they had finally identified HMB Endeavor’s resting place in Rhode Island, off the US east coast.
Kieran Hosty, manager of marine archeology at the Australian National Maritime Museum, said: “We have been actively searching for the ship’s wreck in Rhode Island and since we know what woods HMB Endeavor was built with, we have been using the species identification process. of wood to help us in that work.
“There have been a variety of items associated with HMB Endeavor that have been auctioned over the last 25 years. They always earn considerable interest. “
Kevin Sumption, director and CEO of the Australian National Maritime Museum, said COVID-19 had delayed further investigations.
“There is some critical data the team needs before we can definitively identify the vessel,” he said.
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