Florida Shipwreck Gold Found

By | July 28, 2015
Spanish Eight Escuedo Coin

Spanish Eight Escuedo Coin


Dateline July 28, 2015: In the 1700’s, as European expeditions plied the waters off eastern North America, some of these ships were laden with gold. Inevitably some of these ships were wrecked, due to weather or battle, and their precious cargo sank along with them. From time to time, these treasure troves are rediscovered.

Found: Florida Shipwreck Gold

A trove of ancient gold coins and other artifacts was recently discovered from the wreckage of a Spanish fleet that sank off the coast of Florida 300 years ago, according to a recent article appearing in Fox News. In what must of been a horrific storm, 11 of 12 Spanish vessels en route from Cuba were sunk. The flotilla was carrying an estimated 3.5 million pesos in gold and gems.

Included in the recent find are over 50 gold coins, 40 feet of gold chain, and an exceptionally rare gold coin known as the Tricentennial Royal, of which only six are known to exist.

The recent discovery is estimated to be worth over $1,000,000, with the Tricentennial Royal valued at about $500,000 alone, according to the article.

The haul was found by a Florida man, Eric Schmitt, while on an annual treasure hunting trip with his family. The discovery was announced by a salvage company run by Brent Brisben, who maintains the rights to explore the site where the booty was found.

Under Florida law, the state will take up to 20 percent of find. The remainder will be divided between Schmitt and the salvage company.

Update!

Dateline August 22, 2105: Wow! Just one month later, another find in shallow waters off the coast of Florida! According to Fox News, a team of treasure hunters have made a second find of Spanish colonial gold coins worth $4.5 million. The find was announced by Bret Brisben, captain of the S/V Capitana and includes some 350 gold coins. Nine of these coins are “Royals”, with an estimated value of $300,000 each. According to Brisben: “People love treasure stories. It resonates with everybody — every demographic, young and old, rich and poor.” He’s right.

 

Collecting Shipwreck Coins

Wreck of the Dart

Wreck of the Dart

One of the beneficial aspects of coin collecting is that it puts  the collector in a great position to learn history. Have a look at this post on shipwreck coins, a coin collecting niche rich with historical significance. You can get in on this niche: Amazon can be a great source for shipwreck coins. Many of the Amazon shipwreck coins are graded by professional coin services, so you know you’ll be buying an authentic piece.

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12 thoughts on “Florida Shipwreck Gold Found

  1. Fito

    Nice article!

    I live in Uruguay, and you reminded me of some news we had in May here. A local treasure hunter was about to rescue 100,000 gold coins from the British boat “Lord Clive”

    I don’t remember how much is the cut for state here, buy i believe is 50% 🙁

    It is nice to see that there is not only business when it comes to gold. I mean, in this cases, you can learn a lot of history, that otherwise would be forgotten.

    Nice article!

    Best regards!

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Hello Fito,
      Thanks for stopping by and giving your comment. One of the great things about coin collecting is that it is intimately woven with history. it’s one of the reasons why it is such a fascinating hobby.

      Reply
  2. John

    Michael,
    Very interesting find in the waters off of Florida. How deep was the ship when it was found, most are not very deep. This would be a great way to make a living, just travel the waters and find gold and silver just under the surface of the water.
    This article shows that there are several ways to collect silver and gold coins.
    John

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Hi John,
      According to one of the articles I read the water was only 12 feet deep! Apparently six ships which were sunk off Florida’s “treasure Coast” haven’t been found yet. So there’s more to be discovered.

      Reply
  3. Tiffany

    WOW..one of my dreams to find a treasure like the Florida shipwreck gold. I mean this was found in shallow waters!!! I’ve heard in the past that these treasure hunts cost a lot of money to fund. One of the reasons the titanic is so cost prohibitive is that it costs quite a bit to search in deep water. This all means probably that there is more gold to be found in and around this Florida area.

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Hello Tiffany and thanks for your interesting comment. Yes, it does cost money to do these searches and indeed, there is probably more gold to be found off the Florida coast. During Spanish colonial times the Florida coast was a major shipping route and many of these ships were laden with treasure. There were just as many hurricanes then as now so there are probably more wrecks and gold to be found.

      Reply
  4. Kevin

    I love collecting coins and this is a great article on a shipwreck finding. I saw a story on the USS Central America on the History Channel. They were sending gold from California to the East Coast in the 1850’s. It sounds like they have found some of the gold ingots and coins and they looked as good as when they were minted.

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Thank you, Kevin, for your comments. There is something especially fascinating about finding artifacts from shipwreck. Amazingly, in many cases, the items are very well preserved.

      I hope you keep up your interest on this subject and perhaps even begin a collection of shipwreck coins.

      Reply
  5. Summerly

    This is a fun article! I can’t imagine how awesome it would be to find a treasure! I love finding money on the ground, never mind an underwater treasure! I also like collecting coins from different countries, so coins this old and unique would be awesome for a collector to have.

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Hello Summerly,

      You are right. Shipwreck coins are amazing! They bring out the sense of adventure and history in all of us. Oh – and you are not the only one who loves to find money on the ground. It’s amazing what you’ll find if you keep your eyes open!

      Reply
  6. Netta

    Hey Mike:

    What a fascinating look into a world that is new to me.
    My grandson’s a coin collector and now I do understand better his fascination with it.

    Sunken treasure is such a cool paradigm. You just KNOW there’s got to be some kind of story behind them, likely brimming with intrigue and derring-do and all the other good stuff.

    Great read!

    Reply
    1. Mike Post author

      Hello Netta,

      Many thanks for stopping by and commenting. Yes, sunken treasure is history brought to light and has great intrigue. Hope your interest in this will blossom into a hobby – or even a business!

      Reply

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