Maritime Archaeology Monographs Series (MAMS)

The Maritime Archaeology Program produced the Flinders University Maritime Archaeology Monograph Series (MAMS), previously known as the Maritime Archaeology Monographs and Reports Series (MAMARS), as a way to offer research conducted by students and staff to a broader audience and provide students with an opportunity to publish their work. All MAMS are free and available for download in PDF format below.


Current titles in the MAMS series


MAMS No 1 (PDF 774KB)

The Archaeology of aircraft losses in water in Victoria, Australia, during World War Two

By Julie Ford 

ISSN: 1832-326X

pp. ix + 130, contents, 15 tables and 8 figures (maps and photos), references, 2 appendices, abstract, abbreviations.


This study is of 75 aircraft wrecks located in Victorian waters from World War II. Victoria during World War Two was a major training centre for aircraft personnel, and aircraft construction. Bases were setup around Port Phillip Bay , Sale and Bairnsdale to accommodate the large number of training units that was required throughout the war. While it is understood that some training accidents would follow the establishment of these facilities, the number of accidents related to training personnel and the Royal Australian Air Force has never been truly known.

Of the 75 sites, nine are located in Port Phillip Bay, 51 on the east coast of Victoria heading towards the New South Wales border and two on the west coast heading towards the South Australian border. While the wreck sites were not able to be physically located during the course of this study the large number of sites associated in this study is bigger than initially thought that it was going to incorporate.

The results of this research have been the evaluation of the archaeological potential of locating and surveying aircraft in Victoria . The archaeological significance of these sites is that they demonstrate the growth of the aviation industry, and the Royal Australian Air force in Victoria during World War II. The understanding and recognition of these sites as cultural resources is a necessity to ensure their survival. It is hoped that this thesis will shed some light onto a topic which has only briefly touched upon, and that this research will be the starting point of further work on their location and characteristics.



MAMS No 2 (PDF 13MB)

Investigation of a survivors camp from the Sydney Cove shipwreck

By Mike Nash 

ISSN: 1832-326X

pp. 73, contents, 13 figures (maps and photos), bibliography.


The excavation of a shipwreck site and its associated survivor camp as part of an extended archaeological project is almost unique in both an Australian and international context. Since the rediscovery of the Sydney Cove shipwreck in Tasmanian waters in 1977 an extended program of survey, excavation and analysis has been carried out. During 2002 the author undertook test excavations at a site on nearby Preservation Island that has been confirmed as a dwelling constructed by the Sydney Cove's crew. A collection of artefact material was recovered including items of the ship's cargo, fittings and equipment, personal articles and foodstuffs. This thesis utilises the archaeological collections from the underwater and terrestrial sites associated with the Sydney Cove, to look at the subject of survivor camps in detail. A comparative model for the development of survivor camps proposed by Dr Martin Gibbs provides the basis for this study.


MAMS No 3 (PDF 26MB)

Understanding the Sleaford Bay tryworks: an interpretive approach to the industrial archaeology of shore based whaling

By Adam Paterson 

ISSN: 1832-326X

pp. iv + 104, contents, 28 figures (maps, site photos, plan and profile site diagrams, graphs),  5 appendices, references.





MAMS No 4 (PDF 36MB)

A nice place for a harbour or is it? Investigating a maritime cultural landscape: Port Willunga, South Australia

By Aidan Ash 

ISSN: 1832-3545

pp. xii + 85, abstract, contents, 57 figures (maps, photos, drawings), referenecs, appendix, questionnaire.


Seascape and landscape archaeology aims to provide an interpretation of an area using a wide range of information sources to answer questions concerning human behaviour. This study applies theory derived from research into maritime cultural landscapes and seeks to interpret the development and decline of European activity in a 19th century port in South Australia . Wreck sites, pier remains, fishing equipment storage areas, lookouts, sailing directions, hotels, residential buildings, warehouses, historical records, nomenclature and oral history have been used to build an interpretation of the types of infrastructure used at Port Willunga.



MAMS No 5 (PDF 33MB)

An assessment of Australian built wooden sailing vessels (constructed between 1850 - 1899) operating the South Australian intrastate trade: methods and materials

By Rebecca O'Reilly 

ISSN: 1832-3545

pp. xi + 116, contents, abstract, 49 figures, 26 photographs, 6 tables, references.


Investigation into the construction of Australian built wooden sailing craft, constructed between 1850-1899, has taken an active role over the past 20 years. However, much of this research has been based on a historical approach rather than an archaeological one. This thesis discusses the combination of historical documentation, archaeological fieldwork and timber analysis to provide an insight to understanding the Australian built coastal traders that operated the intrastate trades throughout Australia .

Wooden sailing vessels in Australia , constructed between 1850-1899 were designed to suit specific tasks and a specific environment. While it is obvious that cultural continuity in ship design and construction was present throughout the colonial shipbuilding period, cultural adaptations were gradually adopted to produce a vessel unique for Australian purposes, being a vessel that could safely operate the intrastate trade. These adopted modifications saw a change in hull design and sail technology.

Unique to the colonial Australian shipbuilding industry was the use of Australian timbers. The study reveals that specific timbers were used for specific tasks in ship construction. When these or other suitable timbers were unavailable, shipwrights obtained them through the timber trades that had established well before the 1880s to manufacture their vessels.

This thesis aims to explain methods of construction, modifications made to traditional constructions and the use of naturally grown resources in the construction of

Australian built wooden sailing craft, built between 1850-1899 that operated the intrastate trade. The ambition of the author is to promote further research into this topic and to provide the reader with an understanding of these important and interesting vessels that helped to shape the nation.




MAMS No 6 (PDF 71MB)

The history and archaeology of Gaultois Shore-based Whaling Station in Newfoundland, Canada

By Mark Staniforth 


Historical background and archaeological survey of Balaena, a 20th century Norwegian whaling station in Newfoundland, Canada

By Martin McGonigle and Mark Staniforth

ISSN: 1832-3545

pp. xi + 32 +14, contents, 18 figures and 9 figures (maps and photos), references and bibliography.


This project conducted extensive archival research and a preliminary pre-disturbance survey of the archaeological site of the 19th century shore-based whaling station at Gaultois in Hermitage Bay in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The site is located on Whale (Lamy) Island at the entrance to Gaultois Harbour , approximately 150 m north-east of the public wharf at Gaultois township. Preliminary archival research indicated that this was a successful and long-lasting operation that is potentially directly comparable with whaling operations in the Australian colonies that operated over a similar time period and fits neatly into the comparative phase of the AWSANZ (Archaeology of Whaling in Southern Australia and New Zealand) project.



MAMS No 7 (PDF 56MB)

Convict probation and the evolution of jetties at Cascades, the Coal Mines, Impression Bay and Saltwater River, Tasman Peninsula, Tasmania: an historical perspective

By Rick Bullers 

ISSN: 1832-3545

pp. x + 52, contents, references, endnotes, 20 illustrations (tables, maps, drawings).


This paper discusses the changing use of jetties on the Tasman Peninsula, Tasmania, with emphasis on four former convict probation sites. Convicts built jetties to support the vessels that formed the stations' only means of transport and communication. With cessation of convict transportation, and later the closure of penal settlements, the stations became the nuclei for free settlement on the Peninsula. The jetties were upgraded, rebuilt and modified for settlers to transport goods to external markets. A thriving orchard industry was established and the port infrastructure was vital for the economic viability of the new settlements. Technical details on all the jetties are provided.




Quality Assured: Shipbuilding in Colonial South Australia and Tasmania

By Rick Bullers 

Abstract: (forthcoming)




Bound for South Australia:19th century Van Diemen's Land Whaling Ships and Entrepreneurs

By Kylli Firth 


This research provides a comparative historical and archaeological analysis of the shore-based and palagic (deep-sea) whaling industry of Tasmania and South Australia . This was an important maritme industry which, more often than not, has been sidmissed within contemproary Australian historical writings. It is argued that Launceston and Hobart Town whalers, who plied their trade during a relatively short but vital period of economic growth in colonial history, were familiar with the spoils of whaling, not only in their own coastal and oceanic waters, but also in thos of South Australia .

The identities of this industry, both owners and workers, are examined. They were often well acquainted, either through business of through rivalry, and were entrepreneurs with a common goal.  The whaling vessels were owned captained and regularly exchanged within the same small group of men. The coastal whaling voyages and shore-based whaling establishments set up by these men opened up a significant number of frontier settlements along the South Australian coastline.

Historical research combined with maritime archaeological evidence are employed to examine the nature and extent of the role played by the Tasmanian entrepreneurs in the development of the South Australian whaling industry.

Both maritime and historical archaeology are integrated to determine that a shore-based whaling station site existed at Fisherman's Point in Spalding Cove, South Australia . It is confirmed that the whaling station was owned and operated by Henry Reed of Launceston during 1831 and 1832. Furthermore, the precise location of the site is determined from the documentary and archaeological evidence.



MAMS No 10 (PDF 13MB)

The Last Global Warming? Archaeological Survival in Australian Waters

By David Nutley 


This archaeological study examines the potential for inundated cultural heritage to survive the process of inundation within the context of the Australian Indigenous cultural landscape and during periodic or permanent immersion in coastal, riverine and lacustrine environments. The creation of physical evidence of human occupation is a product of cultural values, geography and resource availability across time. Where it survives is a factor of interplay between environment and the composition of the physical evidence itself. Understanding of this interplay assists in understanding the dynamics of any specific cultural group including their values and economics.

In order to investigate currently observable impacts a survey was conducted within the confines of North Arm, Sydney Harbour . This site was chosen as a suitable representative setting from which to develop predictions for a wider range of site types as well as geographical and regional environments and micro-environments. A global comparison of available literature was also undertaken and demonstrated a range of approaches used in searching for and investigating inundated cultural heritage sites. The review revealed a considerable gap between literature about inundated sites and that currently available for terrestrial settings.

The study shows that there is no doubt that a variety of Indigenous Australian habitation sites and displaced artefacts have survived in defined hydrodynamic and geological settings and through different eras. It identifies the need for predictive modelling to prioritise future research and as a basis for synthetic, multidisciplinary, regional studies and as an approach essential to effective understanding of inundated Indigenous sites within wider social economic and religious contexts.