In 2008, following a cultural resources remote-sensing survey for the Proposed Galveston-Bolivar Causeway Project, PBS&J was contracted by the Texas Department of Transportation to perform three studies as supplements to the original investigation. These studies comprised a hydraulic probing investigation at the Old Port Bolivar slip in the area of a charted historic shipwreck; a review of historic maps and aerial photography of the Area of Potential Effect (APE); and an assessment of a collection of abandoned hulks at the northwestern tip of Bolivar Peninsula. All three studies were completed between June and August 2008.
The hydraulic probing investigation at the Old Port Bolivar slip located the remains of a potential submerged shipwreck site measuring approximately 40 x 11 feet at a depth of 17–18 feet below the water surface. PBS&J also examined over 40 historic maps from the collections of the National Archives in Washington, D.C. The investigation of historic maps isolated at least 12 shipwrecks within the APE. Historic Tobin aerial photos of the APE acquired by PBS&J were limited to the sets available from 1930 and 1956. One shipwreck anomaly discovered during the 2007 Galveston-Bolivar Causeway remote-sensing survey was captured in the 1956 aerial. The incomplete coverage area of the 1930 photography prevented a review of other known targets. An investigation of the abandoned hulks at Bolivar Peninsula determined that 16 barges are arranged in three primary groups. These barges have either ferrous or wooden hulls; most of the hulks are submerged. Research did not discover parallels for the types of barges examined by PBS&J, but review of barge construction history indicates many of these hulks could likely predate World War II.
This is a work for hire produced for the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), which owns all rights, title, and interest in and to all data and other information developed for this project under its contract with the report producer. The report may be cited and brief passages from this publication may be reproduced without permission provided that credit is given to TxDOT and the firm that produced it. Permission to reprint an entire chapter, section, figures or tables must be obtained in advance from the Supervisor of the Archeological Studies Branch, Environmental Affairs Division, Texas Department of Transportation, 125 East 11th Street, Austin, Texas, 78701.
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