Matthew H. Thompson, M.A., R.P.A.

Director and Maritime Archaeologist


Thompson Maritime Consulting, LLC, is owned and under the direction of Matthew H. Thompson. 

Born in southeastern North Carolina, he was raised along the shores of Lake Waccamaw and the nearby Atlantic Ocean. 

His enthusiasm for maritime archaeology and history led to the pursuit of a BA in History at Appalachian State University, a MA in Maritime Studies at East Carolina University, and currently completing the requirements for a PhD in Archaeology at the University of Oxford.

His fascination with all things maritime was fueled by a life-long journey as a recreational diver which led to completing commercial diving school at the International Diving Institute in which he earned an Air/Mixed Gas Diving Certification through the Association of Diving Contractors International (ADCI). 

who we are


His professional interest pertains to the use of underwater acoustics for imaging and subsurface absolute localization. His doctoral research at the University of Oxford involved the development of an enhanced underwater georeferencing methodology which allows users to incorporate absolute (satellite) positioning information for both conventional and modern digital archaeological data collection techniques that traditionally rely on relative measurements.

Thompson Maritime Consulting, LLC, was established to gratify marine industry requirements for an archaeological consulting firm capable of rapid deployment throughout the United States and the world. 

Founded in 2011, Thompson Maritime Consulting, LLC, has participated in numerous archaeological projects that span from dive reconnaissance, marine remote sensing surveys, monitoring, to complex excavations of submerged cultural resources. 

Archaeological surveying and its practices should continuously evolve to adapt to provide clients with favorable results, while maintaining efficiency and practicality. Thompson Maritime Consulting, LLC, is dedicated to the development and application of enhanced subsurface surveying techniques that exceed industry standards; thus, providing clients with optimal results that are both time and cost efficient. 

Thompson Maritime Consulting, LLC, offers the following services:

On Shore Services

- Archival and Historical Research

- Education (undergraduate and graduate level curriculum)

- Training (fieldwork methodologies, equipment, etc.)

- Permitting Applications

- Section 106 Compliance

- National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) Nominations

- Archaeological Diving Planning

- Data Processing and Analysis

- Shoreline Surveys

- Artifact Interpretation and Analysis

- Museum Curation and Exhibit Development

- Public and Private Lecture Presentations

- Media and Documentaries 

On the Water Surface Services

- Side Scan Sonar (Klein 3900 and SonarPro Software)

- SonarWiz Acoustic Data Processing Software

- HYPACK Navigation and Data Acquisition Software

- Geometrics 882 Cesium Magnetometer

- Trimble SPS855 GNSS

- Real-Time Network/Virtual Reference Station Services

- Applied Acoustic Engineering Ultra-Short Baseline Sonar

- Humminbird 1198c (site reconnaissance and diver survey)

- Archaeological Monitoring

- Acoustic and Magnetic Sensor Consulting and Interpretation

- Missing Object Location and Identification

- Drowning Victim Location

Underwater Services

- Diver Reconnaissance

- Subsurface Object Localization and Mapping

- Object Location and Recovery

- Georeferenced Digital Photogrammetry (Agisoft Metashape)

- Project Monitoring

- Archaeological Diving Training and Instruction

- Surface-Supplied Air Diving (Kirby Morgan 37SS)

- Underwater Acoustic Communication (OTS SSB-2010)

- Prehistoric/Historic Submerged Cultural Resource Surveys

- Phases I, II, and III Archaeological Surveys