This evening, Flicka went to the Royal Ontario Museum for a special program called “The Franklin Expedition: Into the Deep” and got to see the only replica of the bell from HMS Erebus!
According to Wikipedia (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Erebus_%281826%29), “On 8 September 2014 it was announced that the wreckage of one of Franklin’s ships was found on 7 September using a remotely operated underwater vehicle recently acquired by Parks Canada. On 1 October 2014 the Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that the remains were that of Erebus. The recovery of the ship’s bell was announced on 6 November 2014. The remains of the ships are designated a National Historic Site of Canada with the precise location of the designation in abeyance.”
According to several news outlets (including http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/hms-erebus-bell-replica-to-be-centrepiece-of-franklin-expedition-exhibit-1.2877467), “A full-scale 3D printed replica of the bell that once rung out aboard the HMS Erebus — one of two ships that were part of Sir John Franklin’s ill-fated 1845 attempt to find the Northwest Passage — will be the centrepiece of a new exhibition showcasing the expedition and its connection to Canadian history.”
At tonight’s special program, the replica (the only one of its kind) was on display.
The following photos of the original bell from HMS Erebus are from http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/culture/franklin/photos/gal03.aspx:
According to Parks Canada (see http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/culture/franklin/cloche-bell.aspx),
“A ship’s bell is generally considered the most iconic object that might come from a shipwreck. Not only is it a physical representation of a ship’s identity but it is often romantically considered to be its ceremonial heart and soul, the sound by which all shipboard routine is regulated each day, whether signalling the advance of time each and every half hour, alerting the crew to the changing of the watch, maintaining contact within a squadron of fogbound ships, or ringing in the New Year. The ship’s bell was recovered during dives and archaeological investigation by Parks Canada’s underwater archaeology team in September. Since then, the bell has been undergoing conservation stabilization and additional research. The bell is intact and generally in very good condition. There are two embossed markings on the artifact: a Royal Navy ‘broad arrow’ indicating property of the British Government, as well as the date ’1845.’”
Tonight’s special program featured a panel discussion about the discovery of HMS Erebus with the following individuals:
1. Ryan Harris, Senior Underwater Archaeologist, Parks Canada
2. Doug Stenton, Director Culture and Heritage, Government of Nunavut
3. Rear-Admiral John Newton, Royal Canadian Navy
4. Moderator: Andrew Lambert, Laughton Professor of Naval History, King’s College, London, UK
The photo below, from http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/culture/franklin/photos/gal03.aspx, features Mr. Harris (left) and Mr. Stenton (right). Jonathan Moore is in the centre:
After the program, Flicka met Ryan Harris!
To learn more about the discovery of HMS Erebus, check out: