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The Underwater Archaeology Search for Franklin's Lost Vessels: HMS Erebus and HMS Terror National Historic Site

Past Expeditions

2010 Expedition - Meet Our Team

Parks Canada’s Underwater Archaeology Service (UAS) will lead a second archaeological exploration to search for HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, off the coast of Nunavut, with projected dates of August 10-August 31, 2010. The first expedition was conducted in August 2008.

Parks Canada provides underwater archaeology expertise to various levels of government and to non-government organizations, often working in collaboration with them, as it is the case of the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror expedition. This Canadian-led expedition is a collaborative project among Parks Canada, the Canadian Hydrographic Service (CHS) and the Canadian Coast Guard. The partnership combines a breadth of expertise and will inevitably provide new information and add to the body of research on the fate of these ships. If found, all future archaeological investigations will again be led by Parks Canada.

The expedition is staged from CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier, a Canadian Coast Guard ice-breaker. The search area falls within uncharted waters and the CHS will provide surveying expertise and technology to help map the area of interest and nearby routes for navigational charts. Information gathered during the search will contribute to improving charts of the Canadian Arctic.

Canadian Coast Guard

William Noon Captain William Noon
© Parks Canada

CAPTAIN WILLIAM NOON, CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier, a native of West Vancouver, BC, joined the Canadian Coast Guard in 1981. Captain Noon served as a seaman and then Lifeboat Coxswain in Bull Harbour, Powell River, and Ganges, BC. In 1984 he attended the US Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat Surf Course at Cape Disappointment, Washington and CCG Coxswains Course in Cornwall, Ontario.

After obtaining a bridge watch-keeping certificate, Captain Noon served as Navigation Officer on numerous ships including the CCGS Martha L Black, CCGS Narwal, CCGS Sir James Douglas, CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier and CCGS Bartlett in the BC coastal waters and the CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Arctic Ivik in the Canadian Arctic.

Captain Noon first relieved as Master of CCGS Arctic Ivik in 1995 and was appointed Master of the Buoy Tender CCGS Bartlett in 1997, Captain Noon successively commanded the research ships CCGS Ricker and CCGS John P Tully undertaking offshore oceanographic and SAR missions.

Captain Noon was the superintendent of the Regional Operations Centre (Pacific) 2000-2002, followed by a further command of the CCGS John P Tully, 2003-2009. He was appointed master of CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier in 2010.

Captain Noon has attended the Pacific Maritime Technology Institute, Camosun College, and the Canadian Coast Guard College.

His interest in maritime heritage takes up much of his time when not at sea. He recently completed 6 years as trustee for the Maritime Museum of British Columbia and currently sits on the board of the Victoria Classic Boat Festival. Captain Noon is also an active member of the Thermopylae Club of Victoria, named after the famous China clipper. The club was founded by mariners in 1932, having the goal of protecting and preserving the nautical history of Canada’s west coast. His remaining time is spent restoring and cruising aboard his 64 year old wooden boat, Messenger III, a former coastal mission boat.

Canadian Hydrographic Service

Roger Cameron Roger Cameron
© Parks Canada

ROGER CAMERON was born in Kingston, Jamaica and moved to Canada in 1977, settling in Burlington, Ontario. Roger graduated from Sir Sanford Fleming College in 1985 with a diploma in Cartography and subsequently attended York University (Geography).

Roger began his career at Canadian Cartographics, then located in Coquitlam, British Columbia where he produced thematic maps, including an atlas commissioned by the Gitksan Wet’suwet’en Tribal Council to substantiate a land claim in central British Columbia. He then moved to Toronto and was employed by Marshall Macklin Monaghan Ltd. where he worked in topographic mapping and a variety of projects utilizing close-range photogrammetry. In 1998 he began his career as a hydrographer with the Canadian Hydrographic Service at the Canada Centre for Inland Waters in Burlington. Roger has surveyed waters of the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River, Trent-Severn Waterway and Arctic and produces paper charts and electronic navigational charts from collected data.

Roger was part of a Canadian Hydrographic Service team that operated from the CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier in 2008 and 2009, and was part of the 2008 team that searched for the Franklin ships. He is currently a Vice-President of the Canadian Hydrographic Association and is Chair of the upcoming 2012 Canadian Hydrographic Conference to be held in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Roger is married with three children and resides in Welland, Ontario.

Andrew Leyzack Andrew Leyzack
© Parks Canada

ANDREW LEYZACK, a graduate of Humber College's Hydrographic and Land Survey Technologist program, Andrew has been surveying for over 20 years, with varied experience in topographic, cadastral, offshore/industrial and hydrographic surveys for nautical charting. He is a Commissioned Canada Lands Surveyor, working as an Engineering Project Supervisor with the Canadian Hydrographic Service, Central and Arctic Region (Federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada). He is presently assigned as Hydrographer-in-Charge of the Western Arctic Survey, Kitikmeot Region.

In addition to supporting Parks Canada's search program (with logistics, personnel, survey launches, sonar and navigation) he is leading hydrographic surveys in one of the most poorly charted areas of the Arctic. The Kitikmeot Region, as it is known, has over the past decade experienced measurable increase in community growth, resource extraction and vessel traffic (deep sea cargo ships, passenger liners and private yachts). The current trend in ice conditions has had a positive influence on the volume of vessel traffic, particularly smaller craft. The waters in this part of the Western Arctic are generally shallower than those of the Eastern Arctic and often vessels are looking for alternative routes around the ice edge when it is present. Our work has been focused on widening the existing routes, carving out new alternate routes for ice avoidance and preparing large scale charts for the various communities. Additionally many of the existing charts are inaccurate and incompatible with modern GPS navigation. Current charting, particularly that which covers the "search area", shows more empty space than soundings. In fact, a good part of our previous joint mission with Parks Canada (2008) was spent clearing a narrow route to safely bring our supporting platform, the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Sir Wilfrid Laurier, some 25 miles south of the existing shipping lanes into the uncharted waters of the search area. In this case, the work can be likened to cutting a new road through a wilderness, where there is little or no indication of the topography or what's around the bend.

Glenn Macdonald Glenn Macdonald
© Parks Canada

GLENN MACDONALD began working with the Canadian Hydrographic Service in 1996. In recent years his work has focused on tides, currents, and water levels. He was part of the Canadian Hydrographic Service group that teamed with Parks Canada on the 2008 archaeological survey to search for the Franklin vessels. Glenn is a songwriter whose most recent collection is Attendance (2010). He has a wife and three children and finds that the disciplines of hydrography, family and music exist harmoniously.

Glenn Toldi Glenn Toldi
© Parks Canada

GLENN TOLDI was born in Burlington, Ontario. Glenn completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Geography and Biology at Trent University in 1992 then studied at Sir Sanford Fleming College (School of Natural Resources) where he earned a diploma in Cartography/GIS Technology in 1994. A fascinating opportunity to live in and travel throughout Australia afforded Glenn valuable work experience. He worked as a Cartographic technician for Cartodraft Ltd. in Sydney Australia in 1995.

Upon his return to Canada in 1996, he secured a position with The Canadian Hydrographic Service as a Hydrographer. Glenn has subsequently settled in Smithville, Ontario with his wife and two boys. He has been an avid yearly participant in Arctic surveys since before his oldest son was born.

Working as a Hydrographer since 1997 with The Canadian Hydrographic Service, he has taken part in many Hydrographic surveys throughout the Canadian Arctic and across the Great Lakes. His experience with Hydrographic surveys includes single beam, side scan and multibeam sonar operations and data processing. Glenn also creates Electronic Navigational Charts and Nautical Paper Charts based out of the Canada Centre for Inland Waters in Burlington Ontario. Recently, Glenn was part of the Hydrographic group which teamed with Parks Canada on the 2008 archaeological survey to search for the Franklin vessels. Glenn worked from 2008-2009 aboard the CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier as data processor during Arctic surveys and will continue in this role throughout this summer.

Parks Canada

Ryan Harris Ryan Harris
© Parks Canada

RYAN HARRIS was born in Calgary, Alberta. Ryan completed his Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology at the University of Toronto. He then studied at East Carolina University, in Greenville North Carolina, where he graduated with his Masters in Maritime History and Nautical Archaeology. Working as an underwater archaeologist with Parks Canada since 1999, he took part in more than 50 underwater archaeology projects throughout his career, including the War of 1812 shipwrecks Hamilton and Scourge, an American PBY-5A airplane in Longue-Pointe-de Mingan (Québec), RMS Empress of Ireland (1914) (Québec), 16th-century whaling vessels in Red Bay (Newfoundland and Labrador), the 18th-century French shipwrecks of the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site (Nova Scotia) and of the Battle of the Restigouche National Historic Site (Québec). His professional fields of research include historic ship architecture and remote-sensing applications to archaeological surveys. He has been actively involved in surveys all across Canada, from L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site (Newfoundland and Labrador) to Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site (British Columbia), and from Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park (Quebec), to the Rideau Canal and Trent-Severn Waterway National Historic Sites (Ontario). He has also participated in underwater archaeology projects in the United States and in Bermuda. In 2008, Ryan was responsible for Parks Canada for the remote-sensing operations of the archaeological survey to search for the Franklin vessels.

Jonathan Moore Jonathan Moore
© Parks Canada

JONATHAN MOORE was born in Banbury, England, and moved to Kingston, Canada with his family at the age of five. He studied classical studies and archaeology at Queen’s University where he received a Bachelor’s degree in 1991. While at university he learned to dive and began his involvement in underwater archaeology. He went on to complete a Master’s degree in Maritime Studies at the University of St. Andrews, and began his professional career in underwater archaeology in England and Scotland shortly thereafter.

He returned to Canada in 1994 and that year began working with Parks Canada’s Underwater Archaeology Service. He has worked on over 50 underwater archaeology projects across Canada on a range of subjects and topics, from historic shipwrecks to submerged prehistoric landscapes and sites. He has directed underwater surveys at a range of sites including, L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site (Newfoundland and Labrador), Rideau Canal National Historic Site (Ontario) and Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site (British Columbia). He recently directed a 2007-2009 archaeological study of the United States Navy shipwrecks Hamilton and Scourge sunk in 90 meters (300 feet) of water in Lake Ontario in 1813. His professional areas of research and interest include War of 1812 shipwrecks, ship abandonment, submerged palaeo-landscapes, the effects of invasive mussel species on underwater cultural resources, archival research and local history. Jonathan was part of the Parks Canada team on the 2008 archaeological survey to search for the Franklin vessels.