James P. Delgado has led or participated in shipwreck expeditions all across the globe. His undersea explorations around the world include RMS Titanic, the recent discoveries of Carpathia, the ship that rescued Titanic survivors, and the notorious “ghost ship” Mary Celeste, as well as surveys of USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor, the sunken fleet of atomic-bombed warships at Bikini Atoll, the polar exploration ship Maud, wrecked in the Arctic, and the 1846 wreck of the United States naval brig Somers, whose tragic story inspired Herman Melville’s Billy Budd. His archaeological work has also included the excavation of ships and collapsed buildings along the now-buried waterfront of Gold Rush San Francisco.
Delgado is executive director of the Vancouver Maritime Museum in Vancouver, British Columbia. Previously, he was the head of the U.S. government’s maritime preservation program and was the maritime historian for the U.S. National Park Service. When not at the museum, he is the co-host of the new National Geographic International television series The Sea Hunters along with best-selling author Clive Cussler. The show is now in its fourth season. Delgado’s other television credits include specials for the Discovery Channel, National Geographic Explorer, A&E, the History Channel, and ABC.
Delgado’s active participation in the study and preservation of shipwreck sites and maritime heritage has included a founding membership in the International Commission on Monuments and Site (ICOMOS) committee on underwater cultural heritage and the presidency of the Council of American Maritime Museums. He also enjoys a more hands-on approach to preservation, and most recently led the crew that restored Ben Franklin (PX-15), a 130-ton oceanographic research submersible originally built in Switzerland for famed undersea explorer and scientist Jacques Piccard and most famously employed on a historic 30-day “drift mission” along the eastern seaboard of the United States in 1969. He is considered one of the world’s foremost marine archaeologists.
A Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Fellow of the Explorers’ Club, Jim is the author or editor of nearly thirty books and numerous articles, most recently Lost Warships: An Archaeological Tour of War at Sea and Across the Top of the World: The Quest for the Northwest Passage, both international best-sellers published simultaneously in North America and Britain. His other books include The British Museum Encyclopaedia of Underwater and Maritime Archaeology; Ghost Fleet: The Sunken Ships of Bikini Atoll; Pearl Harbor Recalled: New Images from the Day of Infamy; Great American Ships; To California by Sea: A Maritime History of the Gold Rush and three books for children, Wrecks of American Warships, Native American Shipwrecks, and Shipwrecks of the Westward Movement.
Adventures of a Sea Hunter-In Search of Famous Shipwrecks
North America’s most accomplished underwater archaeologist explores some of the world’s most famous shipwrecks, and shares his newest and most astounding discoveries.
As host—with novelist Clive Cussler—for the new National Geographic International television series The Sea Hunters—renewed for a third season—James Delgado goes in search of, among others, the RMS Carpathia, the ship that rescued Titanic’s survivors; Mary Celeste, the infamous “ghost ship” found sailing alone without a soul aboard in the mid-Atlantic in 1872; Vrouw Maria, a perfectly preserved Dutch cargo ship of 1771, discovered on the bottom of the Baltic Sea packed with cargo, including crates of long-lost
Old Masters belonging to Empress Catherine the Great of Russia; the lost ships of the Mongol fleet of Kublai Khan that invaded Japan in 1274; and USS Mississinewa, the first ship sunk by a Japanese “suicide submarine” in WWII.Stories and personalities of the past are interspersed with visits and voyages around the world – crossing the Atlantic, drifting in a powerless ship at the mercy of gales in the heart of the Pacific, and navigating through the fabled Northwest Passage. The undeniable thrill of being where history was made makes Adventures of a Sea Hunter a highly entertaining, personal account of the exploration of the sea and the past that rests beneath the waves.