WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — Roughly 250 years ago, the HMS Gaspee was set ablaze and sank to the bottom of Narragansett Bay.

To this day, researchers have been determined to find the vessel’s final resting place.

The search began Friday, when researchers and volunteers with the Rhode Island Marine Archeology Project (RIMAP) gathered at Gaspee Point to begin hunting for the shipwreck.

The goal of the project, spearheaded by Dr. D.K. Abbass, is not only to find the wreckage, but also anything that will point them in the right direction to its location.

“We hope to find evidence of a keel or something like that,” volunteer Roger Hudson explained.

The research team conducted several sonar surveys last year in an effort to narrow down key spots around Gaspee Point. But this year, the crew will be utilizing new technology to gain a better idea of what’s lies at the bottom of the bay.

“We are going out with the latest in 3D ground penetrating technology [on Tuesday] and we’re going to continue surveying this cove,” Rep. Joseph McNamara said.

The more than 40 volunteers looking for the shipwreck are not only being trained in marine archaeology, they’re also extremely dedicated to the search.

“[We’ve been] going over some old wrecks, learning architectural procedures and measurements … how to do things and how to listen,” Hudson said. “It’s all educational and it’s all fun.”

The volunteers hope this search will prepare them to find other shipwrecks as well. The search will continue over the next few days from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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