Joined: 10 Oct 2004
Location: New York
|Posted: Thu Oct 21, 2004 8:45 pm Post subject: The Most Valuable Treasure Recovery? A Brief History
|There have been more than a few statements that the San Jose will be the largest recovery of all time, better than White Bread. There's a good deal of, to be polite, puffery in this business.
Here's one estimate of the San Jose's value:
- San Jose (1708) – The San Jose’s cargo has been estimate at 11 million pesos. Atocha’s manifest, by contrast was approximately one million pesos. www.sedwickcoins.com/articles/atocha2.htm
If three million pesos has a current value of $700 million to $900 million, one million pesos would value at $230 million to $300 million. Therefore, San Jose would value at $2.3 billion to $3 billion. www.goldhoundtreasuredivers.com/investors.html
This is I believe at the extreme high end, with a lot of puffery drawn from the Gold Hound Treasure Divers' numbers which are extrapolated from the very exaggerated Atocha recovery. Even if we assume that the San Jose's numbers are solid and RMS Republic’s cargo recovery is surpassed by the San Jose’s, with San Jose's cargo recovery being undertaken by the Government cargo owners, RMS Republic would still be the largest treasure recovery by an individual/private company for its own benefit - of all time.
For additional perspective, here are just a few noteworthy, true treasure ships:
- SS Egypt
about 10-tons of silver and 5-tons of gold bars as well as a large amount of sovereigns! In 1922 a fortune estimated at £1,054,000
that's approximately $5 million when gold was $20/ounce, about $100 million today.
- SS Laurentic (WWI), 5 million pounds sterling, $25 million, when gold was $20/ounce, $500 million today.
- SS Niagara (WWII)
In June, 1940, when the 13,415-ton S.S. Niagara, on passage from New Zealand to Vancouver, hit a mine thirty miles from Whangarei she took with her to the bottom £2,500,000 worth of gold bars (8 tons) destined to pay for war material from the United States. The marine salvage men brought up from a record depth £2,360,000.
That's $12,500,000 when gold was $35/ounce, $142 million today.
- SS Edinburgh (WWII) - 5 tons of gold, $64 million today.
- SS Central America (1857) - $1.9 million, $20/ounce, that's $38 million in today's gold value. Coin value (as you know), would be higher, but is DIRECTLY comparable to SS Tennessee.
- SS Republic/Tennessee (1865)
$400,000 face value, $20/ounce, $8 million (coin values much higher)
- RMS Republic (OUR 1909 Republic, the BIG unknown)
$3 million eagles, $20 ounce, $60 million today (coin values much higher)
$265,000 Payroll, $20/ounce, $5.3 million (coin values much higher)
15 tons gold bars, " , $192 million
304 thousand troy ounces silver, $1.5 million
Relief Shipment, passenger valuables, unknown ...
Of course, nothing succeeds like success. RMS Republic's treasure is illusive ...