It is almost every kid’s dream to find an old pirate’s chest of gold buried or hidden somewhere. If you also have a similar one, we would like to tell you that it may come true! If you love water and learn diving, there are a number of mystical treasures and rich bounties buried in the ocean floor, just waiting to be discovered by someone.
Till date, a large number of ships have been lost in the seas and oceans of the world. Let us learn about some of the famous treasures discovered on sunken ships, far below in the bed of the ocean.
The oldest known discovered shipwreck, the ‘Uluburun’, dates back to 1300 B.C. The Uluburun treasure was discovered in the period from 1984 to 1992 and consisted of myriad valuable artifacts including the golden seal of Egyptian Queen Nefertiti, precious stones and weapons of ancient times.
In 1622, a Spanish ship ‘Atocha’ carrying a rich bounty fell prey to a strong hurricane and sank. The Atocha treasure was discovered by a famous treasure hunter, Mel Fischer, who found it after almost two decades dedicated hunting. Fischer located the wreck of the Atocha near Florida. The Atocha treasure discovery listed gold bars, silverware, invaluable jewels and some 20 bronze cannons, again worth millions of dollars. Today Fischer’s family runs diving holidays around the location of sunken Atocha where artifacts continue to be uncovered. It is believed by many that in 2011, an emerald ring belonging to the Atocha treasure was discovered and valued at 500,000 dollars.
In 2009, salvagers found the remains of ‘Victory’ that sunk in 1744 in the English Channel after encountering a ferocious storm. It was loaded with lakhs of gold coins and other valuable items. Till date only 41 of the ship’s cannons have been found, while the rest of the treasure— the gold —still remains undiscovered and shrouded in mystery.
The ship of gold: S.S Central America
In 1857, ‘S.S. Central America’ succumbed to a hurricane and sank along with almost 600 passengers and crew members. It is believed that S.S America was carrying more than 30,000 pounds of gold. The gold was found somewhere near Indonesia in the late 1980s by a group from Ohio. A legal battle ensued between the discovery team and the insurance companies and in the end, the insurance companies were able to bag just a meagre 8%, the discovery team kept the rest. This treasure contained an eclectic mix of priceless pearls and gems, perfume flasks and glassware in intact condition despite having remained under water for over 1,000 years. Some relics from an ancient society, the Fatimid Dynasty that was once in power in Egypt, were also found buried with the treasure.
The Black Swan
The ‘Black Swan’ treasure is one of the most recently discovered treasures. In 2007, a mother lode of silver and gold coins was discovered from the ocean floor near Spain. It is believed that this treasure belonged to the Spanish ship, ‘Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes,’ however, it is not confirmed. While the majority of the booty was flown back to be displayed in Spanish museums and returned to the original heirs; courts are still negotiating over the rest.
Now you know that there is still so much to be unearthed from the bottom of the mysterious oceans and seas. If you do happen to find a treasure someday, don’t forget to yell, “Finders keepers!”
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