The sheer number of ships lost at sea that carried lots of treasure can only be guessed at. Many of the bottom of the sea remains unexplored today, and the treasure beneath the surface is truly remarkable. Some shipwreck hunters and explorers opine that over $60 billion worth of treasure remains lost at sea, which leads one to believe that the discovery of this treasure can be priceless. The following sunken ships will help you understand the rising value of sunken pirate treasure and ordinary treasure:
The Las Cinco Chagas
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- The Las Cinco Chagas
- The Merchant Royal
- The Flor de la Mar
- The San Jose
- The San Miguel
- The Santa Maria
- RMS Republic
- The 1715 Treasure Fleet
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The Las Cinco Chagas was a merchant ship transporting over 1,100 people and goods from India to Portugal in 1594, when it failed to reach its final destination after a lengthy journey. The ship was ambushed and finally caught fire and sunk. In addition to the goods and the people, the ship was filled with some of the most valuable stones from India, which were added to the merchant ship after two other ships had been lost in combat. Some valuable stones on board the Las Cinco Chagas include diamonds, rubies, and pearls estimated to be worth $1 billion today.
The Merchant Royal
The Merchant Royal was an English merchant ship rumored to be carrying 100,000 pounds worth of gold and other valuable items. The ship mainly dealt with Spanish colonies in the West Indies and, unfortunately, leaked its voyage back to the English capital, London. The ship also had extra cargo from a burning Spanish ship that added more weight than the ship could handle. The ship reportedly had $1.5 billion worth of gold and other valuables, which remained lost at sea when the ship sank off the coast of Cornwall County, England.
The Flor de la Mar
This Portuguese vessel weighed 400 tonnes and sailed for nine years, completing multiple voyages across the Indian Ocean. However, the magnificent Flor de la Mar also had multiple problems that required repairs very often. In 1511, the ship was on a voyage returning to Sumatra when it unfortunately met with a sea storm. Before the ship began its journey, it was deemed hazardous. However, the requirement of all ships by the conquistadors led the ship to begin its journey on the conquest of Malacca, where it met with a storm and sank. The ship reportedly carried up to $2.6 billion worth of treasure when it met a catastrophe it couldn’t survive with all its treasure lost till today.
The San Jose
A shipwreck known to be one of the most unfortunate with a treasure full of precious valuables is the shipwreck of the San Jose, which many consider the holy grail of sunken treasures. Carrying treasure worth a whopping $17 billion, the San Jose was wrecked by the British navy while the ship had a massive cargo of loot on board the Spanish ship. When the ship sank, it was carrying at least 200 tons worth of wealth, including gold and silver coins and jewels like emeralds. The ship’s wreckage was discovered off the coast of Cartagena in 2015. However, the treasure remains lost at sea.
The San Miguel
Another ship that had a lot of treasure before it unfortunately sank and became lost at sea was the Spanish ship called the San Miguel. The ship was carrying a large amount of precious metals and stones set for sale to Spain, where the king hoped to sell the treasure to fund the ongoing War of Succession in 1715. The amount of treasure believed to have been lost when the San Miguel sank has led many to speculate that this is one of the most decadent treasure ships to have been lost to the mighty seas.
The Santa Maria
The Santa Maria is a ship with a lot of historical significance and is therefore considered a great treasure lost at sea. The ship was among three that had set sail with renowned explorer Christopher Columbus when he went on his voyage to the Americas. Although there may not be any monetary treasure in this sunken and lost ship, the treasure lies in the value the ship adds to the great explorer’s history. The ship ran aground off Haiti and stripped off all its valuables, and unfortunately sank along with its immense historical significance the next day, according to reports.
The RMS Republic was a steam-powered ocean liner that sank in 1909. Owned by the same company that owned the Titanic, this vessel was built in Belfast in 1903. This ship collided with another boat due to a thick and heavy fog and eventually sank off an island in Massachusetts. Fortunately, around 1,500 people were saved before the ship went under. However, the ship was said to be carrying many Americans and other gold worth millions of dollars. The ship’s wreckage was eventually discovered. However, the great treasure it was laden with seems to continue to be lost at sea.
The 1715 Treasure Fleet
In 1715, eleven ships laden with treasure set sail from Havana and Cuba. Unfortunately, all eleven ships were struck by a hurricane off the coast of Florida, which led to all the ships sinking and the loss of over 1,000 lives. The treasure these ships carried has not been recovered to this day. The ship is believed to have tons of gold and silver, which are highly valued today. Reports of some of this treasure washing up on the shores of Florida are seen now and again. However, most of the treasure has been lost somewhere at the bottom of the sea.
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