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Jaco Boshoff

Jaco Boshoff has been involved in the museum world and archaeology since 1988. He has participated in several excavations on land and under water. He has a Master’s Degree in Archaeology as well as postgraduate diploma in Museology. He has been employed as Curator Scientist at Iziko Museums of South Africa since 1991, and oversees the Maritime Archaeology and Historical Archaeology collections.

He was principal investigator on the wreck of the Brunswick (1805) British East Indiaman in the 1990s and was museum representative and inspector for shipwrecks including the Brederode (1785), Colebrooke (1778) and Brittania (1822). He participated in several international projects, among others the wreck of the Pandora (1790) on the barrier reef in Australia.

Mr Boshoff has also worked with the United States National Park Service Submerged Resources Center on sites in Florida including the Biscayne Bay and Dry Tortugas Areas.


A major past research project was the search for the Dutch slave ship Meermin (1766), which was the subject of a PBS and History Channel documentary titled Slave Ship Mutiny. Mr Boshoff was principal investigator of the National Research Foundation-funded project Archaeologies of Antarctica, which investigates seal hunting sites on Marion Island in the sub-Antarctic.

His main project is the Slave Wrecks project, of which he is a co-originator. This international project includes partner institutions in the US, such as the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, George Washington University, Dive With a Purpose and the US National Park Service. Research and field work for this project takes place in the US, South Africa, Mozambique, Senegal and Brazil. As part of this international project, he is the co-principal investigator on the wreck of the Portuguese slaver Saõ Jose that wrecked at Clifton, South Africa, in December 1794.

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