|Titanic Home Page||Proposed Legislation||Titanic Maritime
Memorial Act of 1986
|International Agreement||NOAA Guidelines|
|Salvage||History and Significance||Documents and References||Frequently Asked Questions|
Photo 50: "The nature of the injury sustained by the TITANIC."
(NOAA Photo Library.)
Congress enacted the R.M.S. Titanic Maritime Memorial Act of 1986 (1986 Act) to designate the R.M.S. Titanic wreck site as an international maritime memorial and to regulate research, exploration and appropriate salvage activities at the site. The 986 Act recognized the United States’ interest in the site, its cultural, historical and educational significance, and the risk of misguided salvage. Congress directed the United States Department of State to negotiate an international agreement with the United Kingdom, Canada, France, and other interested countries to implement the purpose and objectives of the 1986 Act. Additionally, the 1986 Act called for NOAA to develop international guidelines (NOAA Guidelines) with the same nations for the exploration and research of the site and any appropriate salvage. The 1986 Act became law on October 21, 1986.