Underwater Investigations

In 1990, a local diver named Tom Mulloy discovered the remains of a shipwreck known as the Forest Queen in 20 feet of water off 2nd Cliff in Scituate. It is just one of the many shipwrecks that Mulloy has investigated along the South Shore coastline together with his diving partners Debra Jackson and Hank Lynch over the past 30 years.

“The visibility is poor and the water is cold, but the South Shore is our favorite place to dive,” says Jackson. “We usually start diving in April and go three or four days a week, weather depending, up until November.”

The divers have found all sorts of items on the sea floor, including portholes, cannons, tools, nails, glass, spoons and forks. The divers work closely with the Maritime and Mossing Museum in Scituate, where there is a permanent exhibit of shipwreck artifacts.

“We look for brass items, which are shiny,” says Jackson. “Iron and tin tend to erode and aren’t reliable for identification purposes. But everything has a story,” says Jackson. A portion of their treasure trove will be on display a public talk on February 8 at South Shore Natural Science Center. The free event is part of the center’s Wednesday night WaterWatch lecture series. For more information, visit southshorenaturalsciencecenter.org.

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