Our Do512 Family team was invited for a behind-the-scenes tour of the La Belle exhibit at the Bullock Texas State History Museum to learn all about “the ship that changed history”. La Belle is an amazing story of shipwreck and discovery, and families can check out the live assembly of the ship at the museum through Sunday, May 17.
La Belle set sail from France in 1684 intending to land at the mouth of the Mississippi River but instead was shipwrecked in Matagorda Bay. In 1995, archeologists made this extraordinary discovery and resurrected the ship that is now being re-built right here in Austin in the Bullock Museum. Often called the most important shipwreck in North America, La Belle changed history and science in one of the most ambitious maritime excavations of its day.
In museum exhibit, visitors can check out recovered artifacts that spent centuries underwater. You can learn more details (and even take interactive quizzes) at iPad stations throughout the exhibit. On Wednesdays through Saturdays, you can speak with experts and actually watch the work in progress as archeologists reassemble the hull of La Belle right before your eyes.
The cargo recovered from La Belle gives you a look into the life of 17th century European colonists in North America. More than 1.6 million artifacts were excavated, including the hull of the ship, three bronze cannons, thousands of glass beads, bronze hawk bells, pottery, and the skeleton of a crew member.
In addition to the exhibit, the Bullock Museum is also showing a 4D film called Shipwrecked which tells the journey of the ship as seen through the eyes of a young French boy setting sail for America in 1684.
We have a family 4-pack of tickets for museum admission so that you can check out the live assembly of La Belle. Winner will need to pick up passes in person at the Do512 office on South Lamar. Enter below. Good luck!