Children's Museum of Indianapolis names IU scientist to new role

INDIANAPOLIS - An Indiana University scientist who's helping investigate the purported wreckage of the famed Santa Maria has been named the Children's Museum of Indianapolis' new underwater archaeologist-in-residence.

The museum says Charles Beeker will help develop museum programming related to shipwrecks discovered in the Caribbean. He'll also serve as a liaison with Dominican Republic officials to borrow shipwreck artifacts that will be conserved and displayed at the museum.

Beeker is director of IU's Office of Underwater Science and Academic Diving. He's currently in the Dominican Republic overseeing ongoing research in the region.

He's working with explorer Barry Clifford, whose team discovered a shipwreck off Haiti's northern coast that could be the remains of the Santa Maria, Christopher Columbus' flagship vessel.

That ship struck a reef and foundered on Christmas Day, 1492.

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