In 1995, Texas Historical Commission underwater archaeologists discovered the wreck of La Salle’s La Belle, remnant of an ill-fated French attempt to establish a colony at the mouth of the Mississippi River that landed instead along today’s Matagorda Bay in Texas. During 1996–1997, the Commission uncovered the ship’s remains under the direction of archaeologist James E. Bruseth and employing a team of archaeologists and volunteers. Amid the shallow waters of Matagorda Bay, a steel cofferdam was constructed around the site, creating one of the most complex nautical archaeological excavations ever attempted in North America and allowing the archaeologists to excavate the sunken wreck much as if it were located on dry land. The ship’s hold was discovered full of everything the would-be colonists would need to establish themselves in the New World; more than 1.8 million artifacts were recovered from the site.
More than two decades in the making, due to the immensity of the find and the complexity of cataloging and conserving the artifacts, this book thoroughly documents one of the most significant North American archaeological discoveries of the twentieth century.
"Few researchers of post-medieval material culture, whatever their specialties, can afford to ignore this book. . . . This combination of keen young minds at an early stage in their careers with mature and informed mentoring by some of the world's foremost scholars in the field (not just individual supervisors, but the entire faculty was available for consultation), working within a critical academic culture and drawing on the resources of INA has proven highly productive. The outcome was clearly beneficial to all concerned. Scholars from other institutions contributed specialist reports, while the whole enterprise was coordinated and supervised by the Texas Historical Commission." --International Journal of Nautical Archaeology
--International Journal of Nautical Archaeology
"The quality of the publication is excellent. Texas A&M University Press has produced more than just an attractive coffee table book. It is a first-rate scholarly treatise. . . . The editors have presented both debate and detail for the readers to judge for themselves. La Belle: The Archaeology of a Seventeenth-Century Vessel of New World Colonization is important for any serious study of the archaeology of this period in New World history." --American Antiquity
Series: Ed Rachal Nautical Archaeology Series
Number Of Pages: 916
Published: 3rd March 2017
Publisher: Texas A & M University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 29.21 x 22.86
Weight (kg): 3.2