Exploring a Sunken Past - Maritime Heritage in Hawaii


Uploaded by NOAAOceanMediaCenter on 13.07.2012

Transcript:

MARITIME HERITAGE IN HAWAII
BEGINS HUNDREDS OF YEARS AGO.

GUIDED BY THE STARS AND THE
WAVES, POLYNESIAN VOYAGERS
CAME BY WATER IN LARGE DOUBLE-
HULLED CANOES ACROSS THOUSANDS
OF MILES OF OCEANIA.
THIS MIGRATION WAS ONE OF THE
MOST INCREDIBLE ACHIEVEMENTS OF
THE HUMAN RACE.
DISCOVERING AND SETTLING THE
REMOTE, WIDELY SCATTERED ISLANDS
OF THE CENTRAL PACIFIC WAS AN
AMAZING FEAT.
NAVIGATORS TRAINED THEMSELVES TO
BE ACUTELY AWARE OF THEIR
ENVIRONMENT.
THEY USED THIS INFORMATION TO
GUIDE THEM ACCURATELY TO THEIR
DESTINATIONS.
SEAFARING SKILLS SPREAD VOYAGERS
ACROSS AN OCEAN AREA OF OVER 10
MILLION SQUARE MILES.

THE EARLY POLYNESIAN
VOYAGEURS ARGUABLY WERE THE BEST
EXPLORERS ON THE FACE OF THE
EARTH.
I THINK WHAT'S IMPORTANT ABOUT
THE SEAFARING TRADITIONS IS THE
RECOGNITION AS OUR CULTURES
EVOLVED, 2,000 YEARS HERE, IT'S
ALWAYS BEEN SHAPED BY THE
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE LAND
AND THE OCEANS.
THE POLYNESIAN PEOPLE WHO
SETTLED IN THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS
RETAINED THEIR SEAFARING
EXPERTISE AND CULTIVATED A
MARITIME-BASED CULTURE
THROUGHOUT THEIR HISTORY.
THESE FIRST SETTLERS DID NOT
REMAIN ALONE IN THE PACIFIC.
CAPTAIN COOK'S LEGENDARY VOYAGE
IN 1778 BROUGHT HIM TO HAWAII'S
SHORES, AND OTHERS SOON
FOLLOWED.
NATIVE HAWAIIAN SEAFARING DID
NOT END WITH THIS CONTACT, BUT
MERGED AND CONTINUED ALONGSIDE
THESE NEW TRADITIONS.
MARITIME ACTIVITIES REFLECTED
MULTIPLE CULTURES AND SEAFARING
TRADITIONS.
WITH ITS CENTRAL LOCATION IN
THE PACIFIC OCEAN, THE HAWAIIAN
ISLANDS QUICKLY BECAME A
CROSSROADS FOR SHIPS OF ALL
TYPES.
EVEN WITH ALL THE SHIP TRAFFIC,
MANY AREAS OF THE PACIFIC
REMAINED UNCHARTED.
THE NORTHWESTERN HAWAIIAN
ISLANDS WERE, AND FOR THAT
MATTER STILL ARE, PARTICULARLY
TREACHEROUS FOR MARINERS.
THE LOW-LYING ATOLLS, HAZARDOUS
REEFS, AND SHALLOW BANKS HAVE
ALL CONTRIBUTED TO THE MANY
WRECKS FOUND HERE.
THESE WRECKS ARE UNIQUE
RESOURCES THAT HOLD VALUABLE
HISTORICAL INFORMATION.
EVEN WHEN SCATTERED AND BROKEN
ON THE REEF, THEY ARE TIME
CAPSULES OF ONCE TRAGIC EVENTS.
THEY ARE SOME OF THE LAST
REMAINING CHAPTERS OF HAWAIIAN
MARITIME HISTORY LINKING US TO
OUR PAST.
PRESERVATION OF THESE
NON-RENEWABLE RESOURCES IS PART
OF OUR RESPONSIBILITY AS
CARETAKERS OF THE WORLD'S
OCEANS.
IN TODAY'S ARCHEOLOGY AND
MARITIME HISTORY, WE GO TO GREAT
LENGTHS TO BRING IN EXPERTS IN
VARIOUS FLDS TO MAKE THIS A
MULTIDISCIPLINARY EFFORT, TO PUT
ALL THESE STORIES THAT WE TELL
FROM VARIOUS INDIVIDUAL
SHIPWRECK SITES INTO THE BROADER
CONTEXT, AND I THINK THAT MAKES
IT A LOT MORE INTERESTING
AND ALSO A LOT MORE RELEVANT.
PEOPLE CAN IDENTIFY WITH IT MUCH
EASIER WHEN THEY SEE HOW THIS
REALLY FITS RATHER THAN JUST A
SINGLE STORY.
SOME OF THE EARLIEST ARRIVALS
WERE THE NEW ENGLAND WHALERS WHO
FOUND THEIR WAY TO THE PACIFIC
IN THEIR GLOBAL PURSUIT OF
LIQUID GOLD-WHALE OIL.
MANY OF THEM MADE HAWAII A PORT
OF CALL FOR PROVISIONS AND
REPAIRS, AND MANY NATIVE
HAWAIIANS CHOSE TO PARTICIPATE
IN THE WHALING TRADE.
AT TIMES, NATIVE HAWAIIANS MAY
HAVE COMPRISED ONE-FIFTH OF THE
AMERICAN WHALING FLEET IN THE
PACIFIC.
WHALING ACTIVITIES IN HAWAII
CHANGED THE SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC
CLIMATE.
ENCOUNTERING UNCHARTED ATOLLS IN
HAWAIIAN WATERS, THESE WHALERS
ALSO BECAME EXPLORERS, LEAVING
THEIR MARK HERE BY GIVING SOME
OF THE ISLANDS THEIR WESTERN
NAMES.
SUCH IS THE CASE WITH PEARL AND
HERMES ATOLL, WHERE THE BRITISH
WHALERS PEARLAND HERMESWERE
LOST IN 1822.
THE HERMESSTRUCK FIRST, AND THE
PEARL,GOING TO HER ASSISTANCE,
RAN AGROUND SOON AFTER.
THE COMBINED CREWS MADE IT
SAFELY TO ONE OF THE SMALL
ISLANDS.
THE ARTIFACTS LEFT SCATTERED
UNDERWATER RECORD THE DETAILS OF
THAT FATAL DAY.

SAILING IN THE WAKE OF THE
WHALERS AND OTHER COMMERCIAL
VESSELS CAME THE SHIPS
OF A YOUNG AMERICAN NAVY
TO PROTECT ECONOMIC INTERESTS
AND PROJECT AMERICAN PRESENCE
IN THE PACIFIC.
IN 1870, THE NAVY SIDE-WHEEL
STEAMER USS SAGINAWWAS ASSIGNED
THE TASK OF OPENING A CHANNEL
AT MIDWAY ISLAND.
ON HER HOMEWARD LEG, DURING THE
PASSAGE FROM MIDWAY TO HONOLULU,
THE CAPTAIN ALTERED COURSE TO
CHECK FOR SHIPWRECKED SURVIVORS
OFF KURE ATOLL ONLY TO RUN
AGROUND IN HEAVY SURF
ON THE REEF.

HER CREW SPENT TWO MONTHS ON THE
ISLAND, WHILE A SMALL BOAT WAS
OUTFITTED AND FIVE VOLUNTEERS
MADE A PERILOUS JOURNEY TO THE
SOUTHEAST FOR ASSISTANCE.
FOUR DIED DURING THE ROUGH
LANDING ON KAUAI.
ONLY ONE, WILLIAM HALFORD,
SURVIVED TO REPORT ON HIS
STRANDED CREWMATES.
THE SCATTERED ARTIFACTS SET
AMIDST THE REEF CREST TELL
OF THE VIOLENCE OF THE WRECKING
EVENT AND THE CREW'S INITIAL
STRUGGLE TO SURVIVE.

WITH THEIR CENTRAL LOCATION IN
THE PACIFIC, THE HAWAIIAN
ISLANDS BECAME A STRATEGIC
CONTROL POINT FOR THE U.S.
MILITARY.
TODAY THERE IS STILL NO OTHER
LOCATION AS CRITICAL TO THE
AMERICAN PRESENCE AS PEARL
HARBOR.
THE JAPANESE MILITARY RECOGNIZED
THIS AND DEALT A PAINFUL, BUT
NOT FATAL BLOW TO THE AMERICAN
FLEET ON DECEMBER 7, 1941.
PEARL HARBOR BECAME THE FOCUS OF
MASSIVE REPAIR AND SUPPLY
ACTIVITIES IN THE PACIFIC AND A
STRATEGIC BASE FOR U.S.
OPERATIONS FOR THE REMAINDER OF
THE WAR.
THIS EFFORT EXTENDED FROM THE
MAIN HAWAIIAN ISLANDS ALL THE
WAY NORTH TO MIDWAY ATOLL.
THE BATTLE OF MIDWAY IN JUNE
1942 WAS THE ONLY REAL COMBAT
IN THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS AFTER
THE INITIAL ATTACK ON
PEARL HARBOR AT OAHU.
ALL OF THESE WARTIME ACTIVITIES
LEFT BEHIND A SUNKEN LEGACY
THROUGHOUT THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS.
THE CULTURAL RELEVANCE OF
PEARL HARBOR TO THE HAWAIIAN
PEOPLE GOES BACK WAY BEFORE
THE ARRIVAL OF COOK.
THIS HAD BEEN A SACRED SITE.
IT HAD BEEN A SITE IN WHICH FISH
PONDS WERE CREATED.
THE CULTURE FLOURISHED AROUND
IT. SO THERE IS A HISTORY BEFORE
PEARL HARBOR, BUT THERE IS ALSO
THE SIGNIFICANT CULTURAL
LANDMARK FOR THE PEOPLE OF THE
UNITED STATES.
THE ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR
USHERS IN WORLD WAR II AND WITH
IT TREMENDOUS CHANGES THAT NOT
ONLY AFFECT THE PEOPLE OF THE
UNITED STATES BUT THE PEOPLE OF
THE WORLD.
I THINK THAT THE PUBLIC HAS
ALWAYS HAD AN AWARENESS AND A
FASCINATION WITH UNDERWATER
SHIPWRECKS AND ARCHAEOLOGY
BECAUSE IT'S PART OF OUR PAST.
TRUE TO THEIR MARITIME
HERITAGE, OVER 5,000 NATIVE
HAWAIIANS WORKED SUPPORTING OR
SERVING IN THE U.S.
NAVY DURING WORLD WAR II.
THESE WORLD WAR II WRECKS,
INCLUDING APPROXIMATELY 80 SHIPS
AND SUBMARINES, AS WELL AS
1,500 NAVAL AIRCRAFT ARE
IMPORTANT HISTORICAL TOUCHSTONES
FOR HAWAII AND THE REST OF THE
WORLD.
NOAA'S NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
PROGRAM AND OTHER PARTNERING
AGENCIES ARE WORKING TO LOCATE
AND DOCUMENT SOME OF THESE LOST
WRECKS.
MANY SITES LIE IN VERY DEEP
WATER REQUIRING SPECIAL VEHICLES
LIKE THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII'S
PISCES SUBMERSIBLES FOR
EXPLORATION.
ONE OF THE FIVE SPECIALIZED
JAPANESE MIDGET SUBMARINES THAT
LED THE ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR,
DISCOVERED IN 2002, LIES IN
1,200 FEET OF WATER OFF OAHU.
NONE OF THE SUBS WERE SUCCESSFUL
IN THEIR MISSION BUT THESE
WRECKS ARE AN IMPORTANT CHAPTER
IN OUR HISTORY AND MEMORIALS TO
THE SACRIFICES MADE
AT THAT TIME.
YEAH, WE'RE GONNA BACK OUT OF
HERE.
DISCOVERY AND EXPLORATION OF
THESE SITES CAN OPEN A WINDOW ON
THE WAR PERIOD AND EVENTS,
WHICH CHANGED WORLD HISTORY.
WHEN WE KNOW ALL THE FACTS
SURROUNDING OUR HERITAGE
RESOURCES, THE STORIES COME
ALIVE.
IN JANUARY OF 1944, THE
SUBMARINE RESCUE VESSEL USS
MACAWARRIVED ON STATION AT
MIDWAY ATOLL TO SALVAGE THE
DAMAGED SUBMARINE FLYER.
IN BAD WEATHER, SHE GROUNDED
HERSELF ON THE REEF AT THE
ENTRANCE TO THE HARBOR.
THE STORM TRAPPED HER CREW ON
BOARD.
SHE ULTIMATELY SLID OFF THE REEF
AND SANK IN DEEPER WATER.
THE COMMANDING OFFICER AND FOUR
CREW MEMBERS WERE LOST.
THIS WRECK NOW LIES INSIDE THE
MIDWAY ATOLL NATIONAL WILDLIFE
REFUGE.
ONE OF THE RESPONSIBILITIES
OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE
IN MANAGING A NATIONAL
WILDLIFE REFUGE IS NOT ONLY TO
PROTECT AND CONSERVE THE
BIOLOGICAL RESOURCES BUT ALSO
TO INVENTORY AND PROTECT THE
CULTURAL RESOURCES THAT MIGHT BE
WITHIN THE REFUGE.
AND WE KNOW BASED ON HISTORIC
RECORDS THAT THERE WAS A LOT
MARITIME ACTIVITY AT BOTH THE
HAWAIIAN ISLANDS REFUGE AND THE
MIDWAY ATOLL NATIONAL WILDLIFE
REFUGE.
THEREFORE IT'S IMPORTANT FOR US
TO NOTE AND LOOK FOR MARITIME
SITES THAT MIGHT BE PRESENT IN
THE REFUGES AND THEN WORK WITH
OTHERS TO ENSURE THAT THEY'RE
PROTECTED INTO THE FUTURE.
WHETHER THE WRECKS ARE WORLD
WAR II SITES OR 19TH CENTURY
WHALERS, THEY ALL HAVE
SOMETHING IN COMMON: THE ELEMENT
OF DISCOVERY.
WHAT'S EXCITING IS THAT IT'S
KIND OF A HUNT FOR HISTORIC
SITES.
IF YOU FIND AN ANCHOR CHAIN THAT
STRETCHES OFF INTO THE DISTANCE
IN THE SAND AND FOLLOW IT, YOU
DON'T KNOW WHAT'S AT THE OTHER
END.
IT COULD BE A SHIPWRECK.
IT COULD BE JUST A LOST ANCHOR.
IF YOU FIND OTHER THINGS IN THE
SAND, YOU BEGIN TO PCE THINGS
TOGETHER LIKE A PUZZLE, AND YOU
SOLVE A MYSTERY.
YOU SOLVE A MYSTERY OF WHO IS
AT THE SITE, WHAT HAPPENED.
AND THAT MYSTERY IS OFTEN
TRAGIC.
IT'S A TRAGIC EVENT.
YOU'RE LOOKING AT A PLACE,
YOU'RE LOOKING AT AN ACCIDENT,
YOU'RE POSSIBLY LOOKING
AT A LOSS OF LIFE THAT HAS
A STORY BEHIND IT AND CAPTURES
PART OF OUR MARITIME HISTORY.
AND YOU'RE RIGHT THERE AT THE
SAME SPOT.
YOU'RE IN THE SAME WAVES, YOU'RE
IN THE SAME SURF THAT CAUSED
THAT VESSEL TO WRECK.
THE LEGENDS ARE BURIED IN THE
SANDS OF TIME ON THE OCEAN
FLOOR, BUT ARCHAEOLOGISTS,
HISTORIANS, DIVERS, AND OTHERS
ARE ABLE TO FIND THE PCES THAT
ALLOW THE STORIES TO BE PUT
BACK TOGETHER, MAKING HISTORY
COME ALIVE.
I THINK WHAT WE HAVE IS THE
ABILITY TO LOOK BACK AT
EXTRAORDINARY ACCOMPLISHMENTS
OF PEOPLE THAT VENTURED OUT ON
THE OCEAN IN THEIR PARTICULAR
TIME WITHIN HISTORY.
THAT HELPS DEFINE WHO WE ARE
TODAY, AND IT HELPS SHAPE OUR
UNDERSTANDING OF THE IMPORTANCE
TO CONTINUE TO EXPLORE.
NOAA'S NATIONAL MARINE
SANCTUARY PROGRAM, THROUGH THE
MARITIME HERITAGE EFFORT, WORKS
TO PRESERVE AND PROTECT OUR
NATIONAL MARITIME HERITAGE AND
TO SHARE THESE TOUCHSTONES WITH
THE PUBLIC.
THESE RESOURCES DESERVE OUR
RESPECT AND OUR EFFORTS TO LEARN
THEIR STORIES AND REMEMBER THE
HISTORY THEY REPRESENT.

[CAPTIONED BY THE NATIONAL
CAPTIONING INSTITUTE
www.ncicap.org]