Dr. Richards specializes in maritime archaeological theory and method with a particular focus on cultural site formation processes of the archaeological record. He has an interest 19th and 20th century maritime history, the history of technology, and in comparative and anthropological approaches to maritime archaeological subjects (in particular non-shipwreck sites such as ship graveyards, the archaeology of harbor infrastructure, and maritime terrestrial sites). He has been involved in field schools run by Departments of Archaeology at Flinders University (South Australia), and James Cook University (Queensland), and has been employed in cultural heritage management work by the State Governments of South Australia and Tasmania. His research has appeared in the Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, The Great Circle (the journal of the Australian Association for Maritime History), the International Journal of Nautical Archaeology, the Bermuda Journal of Maritime History and Archaeology, and Historical Archaeology as well as a number of other journal articles, book chapters, and numerous reports and reviews. He is co-author (with Robyn Hartell) of The Garden Island Ships’ Graveyard Maritime Heritage Trail (Government of South Australia, 2001), author of Ships’ Graveyards: Abandoned Watercraft and the Archaeological Formation Process (University Press of Florida, 2008), and co-editor of The Archaeology of Watercraft Abandonment (with Sami Seeb, Springer Press, 2013). Dr. Richards is an active member of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology (serving on their editorial board, and their newsletter editor 2001-2006) and the Australian Association for Maritime History. He is a former Associate Editor for the journal Historical Archaeology, and currently sits on the editorial board of the International Journal of Maritime Archaeology.
commenced as the Interim Program Head for CSI’s Maritime Heritage Program as of
January 1, 2011 after collaborating with the Institute during the NOAA-led
Battle of the Atlantic Expeditions (2008-2014) and a 2010 summer field school
in the waters adjacent to Oregon Inlet. He is also holds a joint
appointment as an Associate Professor with the Program in Maritime Studies
(Department of History) at East Carolina University (Greenville, NC) where he
has taught classes in the history, theory, method, and ethics of maritime
archaeology, field schools, and cultural heritage management since 2003.
The Archaeology of Watercraft Abandonment. Springer Press: New York, NY. (Co-edited with Sami K. Seeb).
Ships Graveyards: Abandoned Watercraft and the Archaeological Formation Process. University Press of Florida, Gainesville.
Garden Island Ships Graveyard Maritime Heritage Trail. Heritage South Australia: Adelaide. (With Robyn Hartell).
The Vernacular Watercraft of Castle Island, Washington, North Carolina (With Bradley A. Rodgers, Franklin H. Price, Brian Clayton, Andrew Pietruszka, and Heather White). The Archaeology of Vernacular Watercraft, Evans, Amanda (ed.) Springer Press, New York, NY.
Abandoned Ships in Australia (With Mark Staniforth), in Shipwrecks Around the World: Revelations of the Past, Sila Tripati (ed.). Kaveri Books. New Delhi, pps. 285-307.
The Abandoned Ships’ Project, in Perspectives from Historical Archaeology and ACUA Proceedings, edited by Ben Ford and Wendy van Duivenvoorde (With Mark Staniforth), pps. 43-62.
Abandoned Ships and Ship Graveyards: Exploring Site Significance and Research Potential, in Nathan Richards and Sami Seeb (eds.), The Archaeology of Watercraft Abandonment, Springer Press, New York, NY, pps 1-16.
Conflict and Commerce: Maritime Archaeological Site Distribution as Cultural Change on the Roanoke River, North Carolina in Perspectives from Historical Archaeology and ACUA Proceedings, edited by Ben Ford and Wendy van Duivenvoorde (With Franklin Price), pps. 286-307.
Ship Abandonment, in Alexis Catsambis, Ben Ford and Donny Hamilton (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Maritime Archaeology, Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, pps. 856-878.
Garden Island (1906-1945) – Graveyard of Ships, in Mike Nash (ed.), Shipwreck! Nautical Archaeology in Australia, University of Western Australia Press: Fremantle, pps. 183-193
Thematic Studies in Australian Maritime Archaeology, in Mark Staniforth and Mike Nash (eds.), Australian Approaches to Maritime Archaeology, Kluwer Press: New York, pp. 41-54.
The Ships Graveyard, in Jane Marr (ed.). The Port River. City of Port Adelaide Enfield: Adelaide. Pp. 33.
Recommendations for Future Web-based Aspects of the Flinders University Archaeology Topic: ARCH 3007 ‘Power, Ethnicity and Gender in Archaeology,’ in Claire Smith 2000. Archaeology in Cyberspace: A Pilot study at Flinders University, South Australia. Southern Archaeology: South Australia pp.77-80.
The ship graveyard at Meyer’s Wharf: A history and inventory, in Bermuda Journal of Archaeology and Maritime History. In press.
The Meyer’s Boatyard Vessel, Part 2: The Archaeological Investigation of an M-Class Gunboat, in Bermuda Journal of Archaeology and Maritime History. In press (With Peter Campbell, Joseph C. Hoyt, and Calvin Mires).
The Meyer’s Boatyard Vessel, Part 1: The Historical Significance of M-Class Gunboats, in Bermuda Journal of Archaeology and Maritime History. Volume 20: 182-204 (With Peter Campbell).
A Bermudian workhorse: The Dockyard Lighter Wreck, Royal Navy Dockyard, in Bermuda Journal of Archaeology and Maritime History. Volume 20: 7-28 (With Joseph C. Hoyt).
Dockyard ‘workhorse’: Unidentified wreck is most likely a steam lighter, in MARITimes: Magazine of the Bermuda Maritime Museum. Volume 21(3): 18-19 (With Joseph C. Hoyt).
A gunboat rediscovered, in MARITimes: Magazine of the Bermuda Maritime Museum. Volume 21(3): 11-13 (With Calvin Mires, Joseph C. Hoyt and Peter Campbell).
Virtual Modelling and 3D Photogrammetry for Maritime Heritage: Exercises in Eos Photomodeler Pro 5.0, in Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Volume 32: 27-41. (With Brian Diveley, Michelle Liss, and Sami Seeb).
An Eagles Island Ships’ Graveyard Maritime Heritage Trail, in The Newsletter of Historic Wilmington Foundation. 17(3): 5 (With Calvin Mires, Sami Seeb and Michael Dermody).
The Abandoned Ships’ Project, in Historical Archaeology. 40(4): 84-102. (With Mark Staniforth).
Unfit for further use: Watercraft discard in Tasmania (1808-1997), in Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Volume 29: 25-39. (With Michael Nash)
The archaeological examination of watercraft abandonment in Australia: A retrospective, in Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Volume 29: 61-76.
The role of geo-politics in cultural site formation: A case study from the Northern Territory, in Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Volume 28: 97-106.
The role of isolation in cultural site formation: A case study from Strahan, Tasmania, in Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Volume 27: 77-84.
South Australia’s “Floating Coffin”: the diseased, the destitute, and the derelict Fitzjames (1852 - c.1900), in The Great Circle, Volume 25(1) pp. 19-39. (With Sally K. May)
Back to the Bay: An overview of the Holdfast Bay Project 1974-2000 and the reinvigoration of avocational maritime archaeology in South Australia. Bulletin of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology. Volume 26: 19-26. (With Christopher Lewczak)
The Garden Island Ships’ Graveyard: Results and Findings of Archaeological Fieldwork 1996-1998, Proceedings of the National Archaeology Students’ Conference 1998. Australian National University: Canberra, pp.11-18.
Garden Island Ships’ Graveyard: Maritime Heritage Trail, in Heritage South Australia Newsletter. Number 15 (July): 14-15.
Inferences from the study of Iron and Steamship Abandonment: A Case Study from the Garden Island Ship’s Graveyard, South Australia, in Bulletin of the Australian Institute for Maritime Archaeology Volume 22(1): 75-80.