The breakthrough, to be officially announced on Friday, follows an arduous 25-year search for the historic ship off Newport, Rhode Island, on the north-eastern coast of the US. Now, what the Sydney Morning Herald calls "one of the greatest maritime mysteries of all time" may have been solved: the ship's final resting place.
Cook sailed the ship on his voyage of discovery to Australia and New Zealand between 1968 and 1770 and it was later used by the British Navy in 1978 as part of the American War of Independence but it's whereabouts since have been an unknown.
"Now that RIMAP [Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project] and the ANMM [Australian National Maritime Museum] have identified a possible site in Newport Harbor that might be the Lord Sandwich ex Endeavour, the detailed work must begin to prove it", Abbass said in a statement posted on the group's website on Tuesday (US time).
"We're not in a position to identify it conclusively", Rimap's Kathy Aththas told News.com.au. "They were sunk in fairly shallow waters".
Australia has been trying to find the ship which discovered the country for decades.
It was the ship in which the explorer charted New Zealand and Australia between 1769 and 1771.
Maritime historians have urged caution over the discovery of a wreck marine archaeologists believe may be the ship Captain Cook took to Australia and the South Pacific nearly 250 years ago.
Researchers narrowed down the search for Endeavor from 13 vessels to five and now are confident they found the right site.
A statue of Cook which has stood in Sydney's Hyde Park for over a century was vandalized previous year with graffiti reading "no pride in genocide" and "change the date", in reference to controversies over the celebration of Australia Day on January 26, the date in 1788 when the Union Flag was hoisted at Sydney Cove to establish a British penal colony. "This is a vessel that is significant to people around the world, including Australia".
The view of Cook as "discoverer" of Australia - as the Hyde Park statue describes him - has also come in for question, with experts pointing out that indigenous Australians had been on the continent for millennia before Europeans invaded and colonized it in the 18th century.