About the HDS

The Historical Diving Society, USA is an educational, non-profit (501C3) whose mission statement is: “To preserve, study, compile archive and disseminate information relating to the history of man’s underwater activities and to promote public awareness of and participation in underwater activities”. The HDS is supported by a membership base as well as sponsors who understand the importance of our mission. Their tax deductible donations help make this all possible. If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to the Historical Diving Society USA using your Credit Card or Paypal account, you may do so here. To become a member of the Historical Diving Society, please enroll here.

The HDSUSA prides itself on the accurate investigating and recording of diving history. These high standards have attracted the support of the world’s leading divers, many of whom sit on the HDSUSA Advisory Board. Among these are oceanographer Sylvia Earle; pioneering diver, photographer, filmmaker, scientist and author Hans Hass; the First Lady of the Sea Lotte Hass; ocean explorer and environmentalist Jean-Michel Cousteau; Diving Systems International founder and equipment developer Bev Morgan; Newtsuit inventor Phil Nuytten; Divers Alert Network founder Peter Bennett; astronaut /aquanaut Scott Carpenter; renowned underwater photographer Ernie Brooks II; American diving legend E.R. Cross; French diving pioneer Andre Galerne; Oceaneering founder Lad Handelman; D.U.I. founder Dick Long; Body Glove founders Bob and Bill Meistrell; leading British medical authority Sir John Rawlins; deep-ocean scientist Andreas Rechnitzer; Scubapro founder Dick Bonin; and hyperbaric specialist J. Thomas Millington.

The Society Logo

The HDSUSA logo depicts a helmet manufactured in London around the middle of the 19th century by Augustus Siebe, who is generally considered “the father of deep sea diving.” In much the same way that Cousteau and Gagnan’s Aqualung launched world recreational diving, the designs incorporated in Augustus Siebe’s equipment provided a safe and efficient means for man to work under the sea. It was the Augustus Siebe helmet design and its accompanying apparatus that launched the trade of the diver.

The Augustus Siebe helmet gained a reputation for safety during its use on the wreck of The Royal George in 1840. The combination of features incorporated in its design became the standard for helmet construction throughout most of the world, and certain features were incorporated into the design of modern-day space suits.