John   Bratten, Ph.D.

John Bratten, Ph.D.

University of West Florida


Expertise: ArchaeologyArchaeology

Dr. John Bratten, professor of anthropology, teaches archaeology, maritime studies, shipwreck archaeology and artifact conservation.  

Bratten was always fascinated by stories of arctic explorers and shipwrecks. But reading the book, “The Sea Remembers: Shipwrecks and Archaeology,” inspired him to switch careers midstream – from teaching science to studying maritime archaeology.

As co-principal investigator of the Emanuel Point II shipwreck, Bratten combines his passion for science and archeology by overseeing the excavation and artifact conservation of the second vessel from Tristán de Luna’s 1559 colonization fleet. He utilizes a state-of-the-art freeze-dryer provided by the Archaeology Institute to stabilize and maintain diagnostic information from artifacts that have been submerged in water for more than 400 years. 

Bratten wrote, “The Gondola Philadelphia and the Battle of Lake Champlain,” a comprehensive analysis of the oldest intact warship and the associated artifacts that were recovered from the bottom of Lake Champlain. In addition to his manuscript publication, he has written numerous journal articles, lay publications and technical reports. He was also board member of the CSS Alabama Project and the Pensacola Archaeological Society. Before joining UWF in 1996, he was a conservator for Florida’s Bureau of Archaeological Research.

Bratten received a bachelor’s degree in biology and master’s in science education, both from Northwest Missouri State University, and a doctorate in anthropology, with an emphasis on nautical archaeology, from Texas A&M University. 

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