The First Treasure Divers
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The First Treasure Divers : The True Story of How Two Brothers Invented the Diving Helmet and Sought Sunken Treasure and Fame

By (author) John Bevan

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The recorded history of the diving industry has been fundamentally corrupted over the past 150 years. The result is a complete misunderstanding of how it all began. Who invented the diving helmet? Refer to any encyclopaedia or history book and the answer you will find will almost certainly be wrong. The First Treasure Divers reveals the true and fascinating story. It blows away the myths and deliberate misinformation that have crept into the historical record. Thanks to the painstaking research the author has carried out over the past 25 years, the falsehoods are peeled away to unveil the true, definitive account. It follows the lives of two brothers as they struggle to turn their newly-invented diving helmet to advantage and how they wrestle with apathetic and even hostile authorities for recognition of their invention. It thunders through sunken treasure adventures to the heroism and horrors of the Crimean War. The impact of the invention of the diving helmet is immense. In the 180 years since the Deane brothers carried out the first ever commercial helmet dive off the Isle of Wight on the south coast of England, the diving business has expanded to a global industry with an annual turnover in excess of $3,000,000,000. From another point of view, the life-support technology developed in the diving industry provided the knowledge for keeping the pioneering, high altitude pilots alive, which in turn evolved into the life-support systems of the astronauts who walked on the moon.

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  • Paperback | 219 pages
  • 156 x 234 x 16mm | 352g
  • 19 Apr 2010
  • AQUAPRESS
  • Essex
  • English
  • Line drawings
  • 1905492162
  • 9781905492169
  • 529,963

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Author Information

John Bevan has been involved in diving all his life. He has worked for the Ministry of Defence as a research scientist in diving physiology, for Comex Diving Ltd, a North Sea diving company as Technical, Training and Safety Manager and has been the managing director of his own underwater consultancy company, Submex Ltd, since 1976. In his consultancy role, he has worked for four European governments and most of the major oil companies operating in the North Sea. Seeing a demand for technical literature for commercial divers, he wrote and published The Professional Diver's Handbook. It has become the international best-seller in its field and is currently in its second edition. He first came to public notice in 1970 when he and a colleague undertook the world record, saturation, chamber dive to 1500 feet. This was the greatest pressure that any human had ever withstood and they crashed through the "Helium Barrier". It was described by the Americans as a "hyperbaric moon-landing"! In 1990, John helped form The Historical Diving Society and was elected it's founding chairman, a position he still holds. Daughter societies have since been formed in over 20 countries worldwide. After gaining a PhD in the history of diving, he wrote The Infernal Diver, the definitive reference book on the invention of the diving helmet. This was followed by Another Whitstable Trade, the definitive history of the global diving industry (in press). John continues to work as a consultant and has become the UK's leading diving expert investigating diving accidents in litigation cases. He often appears on television as an expert providing commentaries on technical aspects of diving. He is the editor of the diving trade magazine Underwater Contractor International and the Industry Consultant for Diver magazine. John is married and has two grown up children. He now lives in Alverstoke, near Gosport in Hampshire, UK.

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