Do you know these guys?
The attempt to identify them might be one of the biggest Hail Mary pass of crowdsourcing attempts ever.
Today, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries released reconstructions of the faces of two crew members of the Monitor, the submarine that sank in a New Year's Eve storm 150 years ago.
The skeletal remains of both sailors were discovered inside the Monitor's gun turret after it was raised from the ocean floor in 2002. While much has been learned about the physical characteristics of the men, their identities remain a mystery. By releasing images of the reconstructed faces, NOAA hopes the public will be able to assist in the ongoing effort to identify the sailors.
The Monitor site was discovered in 1973. The skeleton remains were used to reconstruct the men's faces.
We don't know all the answers about their lives but the reconstruction is a way to bring the past to life, to create something as similar as possible to the original," said Mary H. Manhein, director of the FACES lab. "To see the faces take shape, to go from bone to flesh is very exciting. Our hope is that someone seeing the sculptures may recognize the face as an ancestor."
|EARLIER TODAY ON NEWSCUT|
Very cool. But sailors of the period probably had some facial hair.
A Civil War-era Union ironclad warship that revolutionized naval warfare, the USS Monitor is best known for its battle with the Confederate ironclad, CSS Virginia in Hampton Roads, Va., on March 9, 1862. The engagement marked the first time iron-armored ships clashed in naval warfare and signaled the end of the era of wooden ships.
Thanks,Tyler. You are an excellent example of crowdsourcing history!
This is indeed a long shot... 150 years ago, and there's no guarantee that those facial reconstructions are accurate enough. Still though, crowdsourcing missing persons is a well-established use of the method, so I wish you the best of luck!
It's not quite as high tech sexy as the reconstructions, but here's a pretty good muster roll for the Monitor that might be of some assistance to those that are really interested.