Good News in History, June 11 - Good News Network
This daily column features all the good news, anniversaries and notable birthdays from this day in history—June 11.
Culture & Entertainment
250 years ago today, the Great Barrier Reef was discovered by British cartographer Captain James Cook off the Australian coast. Cook’s scientific voyage as captain of the HMS Endeavour resulted in splendid detailed maps of the coastland of New Zealand and eastern Australia, which were used by modern sailors until the 1950s. Among the 94 men on board were artists (the photo journalists of their day) and botanists who brought back flora and fauna from the land down under and increased the tally of plant species known to Western science by 10%. [caption id="attachment_141802" align="aligncenter" width="696"] Replica of the Endeavour, and the Great Barrier Reef[/caption] Protected as a World Heritage Site, the Great Barrier Reef is the largest structure in the world made of living organisms. Cook ran aground at a location near Queensland, which is now known as Endeavour Reef—named for the ship. Beached for an entire day the crew ended up tossing 50 tons into the sea so the ship could float higher, and when the tide rose a bit, she was freed to return to the open ocean. In 1969 an underwater search discovered the six abandoned cannons, ballast, and an anchor which had been discarded. The six original cannons are on display at Botany Bay, Cooktown, Canberra, Philadelphia, Wellington, NZ, and London.