WASHINGTON (May. 21)
An expedition of undersea divers outfitted for marine archaeological exploration will attempt to uncover the ancient Palestinian seaport of Caesarea in the spring of 1958, it was announced today. The trip will be sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution and the America-Israel Society.
The expedition will be directed by Edwin A. Link and his wife, Marion, the team which made preliminary exploration of the site last year, and Mendel L. Peterson, curator of naval history at the Smithsonian Institution. The expedition will attempt to dig out the ancient harbor built by King Herod in the first century before Christ. The divers will cooperate closely with the Israeli Department of Antiquities and Hebrew University Archaeology experts.
The venture is thought to be the first in marine archaeology. Divers will operate from a specially built ship with a powerful water jet to blow away accumulated sand deposits. The ship will have powerful hoisting equipment. Israeli fishermen have pulled up many ancient artifacts in that area in recent years. The port served the ancient ships of the Hebrews, Greeks, Phoenicians and others. It is thought many important discoveries are possible.