Our Research Vessels
Propulsion-Johnson 140hp (x2)
Fuel Capacity-150 gallons in twin tanks (54/96) (gasoline)
Navigation-magnetic compass, Garmin chartplotter, Garmin echosounder
Survey Ability-sidescan sonar, magnetometer, subbottom profiler
Communications-Marine VHF (x1), shipboard cellphone
Safety Equipment-Vessel capacity is 10 adults and is equipped with 10 Type I PDF, 1 USCG approved throwable life ring with tether, flares, emergency oxygen kit, 1st aid kit, forward bilge pump, after bilge pump, auxiliary high water pump, 3 B1 fire extinguishers, whistle, hand mirror
Diving Equipment-SCUBA tank racks (cap. 12+berthing stowage), surface supply air, 9hp+5hp induction dredge water pumps, heavy duty dive ladder
SHIP Project- an ongoing and extensive inventory of submerged resources in the Chesapeake and
First Coast Maritime Archaeology Project- a multi-year project to search for shipwrecks in Northeast
Florida and continue excavations on the Storm Wreck, an Revolutionary War period shipwreck in St. Augustine, Florida
The Federalist Project-a collaborative project with George Washington’s Mt. Vernon to search for a
miniature ship lost in the Potomac River in 1788.
Search for Ft. Elfsborg-A project looking for a 1638 Dutch fort believed to have eroded into the
Three Warships Project – A project to look for three warships destroyed in the British occupation of Philadelphia in 1777.
Roper’s namesake is the USS Roper (DD-147), a Wickes Class destroyer commissioned in 1919. While a little too late to see action during WWI, she served under various commands, including part of the last China sailors in Hong Kong and Chefoo. During WWII Roper served with distinction and was the first ship of the United States Navy to sink a German U-boat. Her commander, Cdr. Hamilton Wilcox Howe, is a distant cousin of the modern Roper’s owner, David Porter Howe, Cdr. USN (Ret.) The vessel is equipped for medium range cruising, marine survey, archaeological diving, and light salvage.
Hold space includes storage for salvage/towing gear, power generation space, reserve fuel and water, and reserve cargo space. Dual station computer monitors allow heads-up navigation with simultaneous survey monitoring or other software use. Roper is documented for Coastwise Unrestricted, Fishery, and Recreational.
Documented #- 967078
Propulsion- Caterpillar 3208NA (210shp)
Power Generation-8kw Kohler genset, 1500w DC/AC inverter on house bank
Fuel Capacity-400 gallons (diesel)
Water Capacity-35 gallons (+50 gallon deck tank)
Navigation- shipboard computer running Maptech software (primary), Furuno GP32 GPS/WAAS receiver/plotter (secondary), Humminbird 998C (secondary backup)
Communications-marine VHF (x2), shipboard cellphone, WiFi antenna
Safety Equipment- 17 adult Type I PDF life jackets and 3 children Type I PDF, 1 USCG approved throwable life ring, heaving line, marine pyrotechnics, emergency oxygen kit, 1st aid kit (x2), 2” dewatering pump, 3 B1 fire extinguishers, smoke detector/CO detector in berthing, whistle, emergency 5 gallon fresh water, 10 gallons emergency fuel.
House Accommodations-berthing for 4 (port/starboard watchkeeping), full galley, limited refrigeration, WiFi ready
Survey Ability-Humminbird 998C sidescan, Klein 3900 Search and Recovery sidescan sonar, Marine Magnetics SeaSpy Explorer Overhauser magnetometer, Hypack Navigational Software
Deck Equipment-primary lifting davit with electric hoist (3500# rating), light duty davit (200# rating), lift bags equaling 1000# effort, cutting/burning/welding tools, 11.8cfm gasoline powered air compressor, 9hp 250gpm water pump
Diving Equipment- Onboard dive locker supported by 20 Al80 tanks, Bauer compressor, aux. lift bags, air powered cutting and grinding tools
Fuel Capacity-12 gallons
Navigation-Lowrance iFinder H2Oc WAAS-enabled GPS
Communications-handheld marine VHF
Safety Equipment-4 Type I PDF, 1 approved throw-able, whistle, compressed air whistle, sidelights and all-around white light, B1 fire extinguisher
The name Nonsuch was chosen for a privateer that raided Florida’s coast in 1812. Built in Baltimore in 1810 as one of the infamous Baltimore ‘Clippers’, she was commissioned with a letter of marque in June of 1812 when war broke out with England. Sailing down the Chesapeake bay with a flotilla of other famous privateers such as the Rossie, High Flyer, and Chasseur, she turned south at the Virginia Capes and sailed straight for Florida. Acting in consort with Georgia Rebels, who sought to capture Florida from the Spanish, the Nonsuch and her escort, the Hawk, prowled Spanish waters. While their letters of marque prevented them from seizing Spanish shipping it did not stop them from detaining and harassing ships coming and going from St. Augustine. Nonsuch, much to the dismay and frustration of the Spanish colonial governor, stoppered up St. Augustine, even raiding the city’s frigate Pizarro. Later, during the War of 1812, she was taken into service as the USS Nonsuch and successfully fended off a much heavier British force in the Caribbean. After the war, she served to explore the timber resources of the Gulf Coast. In 1819 Nonsuch had the ignominious duty of serving as the final command for Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. Famous for his role in the Battle of Lake Erie and having coined the phrase “Never Give Up the Ship!” Commodore Perry gave up his life to yellow fever after having led a diplomatic envoy to Venezuela. Nonsuch would go on into history to fight pirates in the Caribbean and she survived until 1928, when sunk for the third and final time by the Okeechobee Hurricane in St. Croix.
Nonsuch is currently not in service and awaiting engine replacement and fitting out. It is our goal to put her into service as a dredging and diving platform given her durable construction and metal decking. If you would like to help put Nonsuch into service, please contact us at 904-829-0745 and ask for Brendan. Help us carry this historic name on and never give up the ship!
Propulsion-Honda BF130 (x2)
Fuel Capacity-60 gallons
Safety Equipment-6 Type I PDF, 1 approved throw-able, whistle, compressed air whistle, marine pyrotechnics, sidelights and all-around white light, B1 fire extinguisher
- General Information
All text and images, unless otherwise noted, are copyright Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program, Inc. We extend permission to scholars, students, and other interested members of the public to use images and to quote from text for non-commercial educational or research purposes, provided LAMP is acknowledged and credited. If there are any questions regarding the use of LAMP’s work, please inquire at LAMP@staugustinelighthouse.org.