Artifact of the Week: A Concreted Mystery

Mystery lump
Concretion recovered from the HMS Fowey shipwreck site at Biscayne National Park.

Iron artifacts recovered from shipwrecks are often encased in a stone-like mineral conglomerate called concretion. This exterior shell forms through chemical reactions brought about by the corrosion of metal. The formation of a concretion can protect the object within from further corrosion or preserve a mold of the original object.

Underwater archeological work at the HMS Fowey shipwreck site.

This concreted object was recovered from the amidships area of the HMS Fowey at Biscayne National Park (BISC) during the 2013 stablization of the site completed with members of SEAC’s Dive Team, BISC staff, and divers from the NPS Submerged Resources Center. The object is currently in conservation but examining x-ray images have helped archeologists identify what is contained within the concretion. Can you figure it out?

X-ray view of the above concretion. Do you recognize what’s inside?

Did you guess correctly?

Let us know what you came up with

on Twitter @NPSSEAC

or Facebook


See some Underwater Archeology work in action

at the HMS Fowey wreck site at BISC here!


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