Shipwreck Preservation Society

of Newfoundland & Labrador

During summer and fall 2013, volunteers from SPSNL worked on the Conception Harbour Project.Charcot shipwreck small

We gathered the following information through historical reseach:

  1. a list of five whaling ships purchased by the Hawke Harbour Whaling Company,
  2. the shipyard plans for the Southern Foam,
  3. the shipyard specifications for the Southern Foam, Sukha, Sposa and Soika,
  4. the dimensions for the Charcot, and
  5. old photos of several of the five whaling ships.

We also surveyed the three shipwrecks in Conception Harbour, gathering data from:

  1. detailed sketches of each wreck,
  2. 2- and 3-dimensional surveys,
  3. GPS locations for the bow and stern of each ship,
  4. Google Earth and air photo imagery of the shipwrecks, and
  5. underwater photographs and video.

We processed the information gathered by:

  1. entering the survey measurements and GPS locations in 3H Site Recorder,
  2. creating a final shipwreck map by hand,
  3. creating 3-dimensional models of each shipwreck in Google SketchUp, and
  4. combining and orienting the 3D models into a single layout using the survey and GPS data.

The final step was to compare our underwater survey measurements of the three wrecks to the shipyard dimensions of the five ships, to positively identify the three shipwrecks. We were able to determine that the shipwreck on the beach in Conception Harbour is the S.S. Charcot (built in Tønsberg, Norway in 1923). The two shipwrecks underwater behind it are the S.S. Southern Foam and the S.S. Sukha (both built in Middlesbrough, England, in 1926 and 1929).

CLICK HERE to download the shipwreck map and divers guide.

CLICK HERE to view a 2D graphic of the shipwrecks.

CLICK HERE to download a report of SPSNL's historical research, wreck surveys and identification of the three whaling shipwrecks.


If you are interested in viewing a spinnable 3D model of the whaling shipwrecks, then

1. DOWNLOAD this 3D SketchUp file (12 MB) of the shipwrecks and then

2. INSTALL the SketchUp viewer on your Windows or Mac computer. Start the viewer and open the SketchUp file.