Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.

50 years ago

aug. 6, 1969

“Man is in the caveman stage of his development of the sea.”

This was how Dr. Philo Wilson, head of Oneonta State’s earth science department, described man’s progress so far in attempting to make full use of the oceans which surround him.

The topic of his talk yesterday at the Oneonta Kiwanis Club was “Resources of the Sea,” and Dr. Wilson pointed out that man has not forgotten about the possibilities of the sea, even though all eyes have lately been turned to the heavens.

“We don’t really know much about the sea,” Dr. Wilson continued, “because we have not yet gotten around to investigate it thoroughly. We already know more about the dark side of the moon than we do about the sea.”

He explained that the sea contains many minerals which have washed into it from our rivers and streams. “They are now mining gold and diamonds off the coast of Africa in the area off-shore from where the gold and diamond mines are located.”

“One fly-by-night outfit has already scooped up off the ocean floor about $250,000,000 in gold in only five years. In another area, the off-shore mining has produced about $500,000,000 in diamonds.”

“This is only scratching the surface of the possibilities of the seas,” Dr. Wilson explained. “Right now, we only get one per cent of our food from the sea, but with the tremendous population explosion, it will soon be necessary to tap this huge reservoir in order to feed the people of the world.”