Rod Mather

  • Department of History
  • University of Rhode Island
  • Phone: 401.874.4093
  • Fax: 401.874.2595
  • Email:
  • Office Location: 113 Washburn Hall
    Kingston, RI 02881
  • Website

Marine cultural resources (historically and archaeologically significant shipwrecks and other submerged structures) represent an integral part of the marine environment. In recent years, a number of governmental agencies (including NOAA) have recognized the increased need to protect and manage these resources. Yet state archaeologists and cultural resource managers have only a very limited understanding of marine cultural resources in this region. I am interested in developing a GIS-based, marine cultural resource survey and inventory program for southern New England with its initial focus on Narragansett Bay. This inventory will have important implications for management, tourism, economic development and marine research in the region. As such, it dovetails with various elements in the Coastal Institute’s mission statement. The inventory will also provide the impetus for smaller research projects. The shipwrecks of Narragansett Bay and southern New England, for example, have tremendous historical importance, archaeological significance and anthropological potential. Just within Narragansett Bay lie shipwrecks dating back to the seventeenth century including at least 33 shipwrecks from the Revolutionary War. The historical and archaeological data contained within these wrecks is irreplaceable and is well worth detailed study.