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Kevin Crisman

Kevin Crisman
Program Coordinator, M.S. Program
Director, New World Laboratory
Professor, Nautical Archaeology Faculty Fellow
Worked at TAMU from


Dr. Kevin Crisman studies ships and seafaring from A.D.1400 to the present day. He has directed or participated in the archaeological investigation of numerous shipwrecks and related maritime sites, principally in Lake Champlain and the Great Lakes, but also around the Azores and Bermuda, in the Gulf of Mexico, and in Oklahoma’s Red River. His research interests include: ship design, construction, rigging, and outfitting; shipboard life and seafaring communities; naval weaponry; and all types of watercraft of the past 600 years, including small boats, sailing merchant vessels, warships, steamers, ferries, and canal boats.

Dr. Crisman earned a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Vermont in 1981, an M.A. from the Nautical Archaeology Program at Texas A&M in 1984, and a Ph.D. in American Civilization from the University of Pennsylvania in 1989. He has been a member of the Nautical Archaeology Program Faculty since 1990 and holds the Nautical Archaeology and the INA Faculty Fellowships. He teaches courses on seafaring in the Americas, post-Medieval European seafaring, seafaring life, the outfitting and rigging of wooden ships, and he is developing an undergraduate course on the archaeology of naval warfare since A.D. 1400. He is also serves as the Institute of Nautical Archaeology’s Vice President for New World Research.


Dr. Crisman has written, co-written, or edited several books, including The Eagle: An American Brig on Lake Champlain During the War of 1812 (New England Press and Naval Institute Press); When Horses Walked on Water: Horse-Powered Ferries in Nineteenth-Century America (Smithsonian Institution Press); and most recently Coffins of the Brave: Lake Shipwrecks of the War of 1812 (Texas A&M University Press). He is currently preparing books on the archaeology of early steamboats and on the excavation of the western river sidewheel steamboat Heroine.