Shipwreck is not Santa Maria, UNESCO experts say

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UNESCO

A shipwreck near Haiti, cannot have been the flagship of Christopher Columbus on his first voyage to America, an expert report has concluded.

The report by the UN cultural agency, UNESCO was requested by the Haitian Government, following claims earlier this year by an American explorer that he had found the remains of the Santa Maria ship.

After investigating the claim in Haiti, the experts said there was "incontestable proof" that the wreck is from a much later period.

The Santa Maria ran aground in December 1492.

The investigation team said the bronze or copper fittings found on the shipwreck site point to shipbuilding techniques of the late 17th or 18th centuries, when ships were sheathed in copper.

Prior to that period, only iron or wood fittings were used in shipbuilding.

The expert's report recommends further exploration to find the Santa Maria and draw an inventory of other major wrecks in the area.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

Duration: 1'05"

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