(ORDO NEWS) — In the 18th century, the Spanish galleon carried wealth worth billions of today’s dollars. However, off the Caribbean coast of Colombia, he met with the British who sank him. The ship sank along with tons of treasures.
Oddly enough, the study of the ship was not carried out by archaeologists, but by the military department of Colombia under the leadership of the Ministry of Culture. There are several reasons for this.
Countless riches and to whom they belong
It should be noted that the remains of the ship were found back in 2015. Prior to that, he was the dream of treasure hunters.
The San José galleon belonged to the Spanish crown when it was sunk by the British fleet in 1708. Treasures were brought to the court of King Philip V of Spain from the New World. Then only a few of the 600 crew members survived.
According to experts, it still contains at least 200 tons of gold, silver and emeralds. The study showed that the galleon remained intact all this time.
Cannons are visible next to porcelain and earthenware, glass bottles, and gold items. The bow is clearly visible, covered with algae and mollusks, as well as the remains of the hull frame.
Authorities said the mission also found two other wrecks, a colonial-era galleon and a post-colonial schooner.
Thanks to technological equipment and the work of the Colombian Navy, it was possible to obtain an image with a level of accuracy never seen before. The wreckage is promised to be preserved and protected for science.
Two San Jose Problems
– The first obstacle to research is that the ship “San José” lies at a depth of almost 950 meters. It took four unmanned underwater vehicles to study it. Raising artifacts from the bottom will be a big technological and scientific challenge.
– The second is in legal disputes between three parties, each of which claims the rights to the find. Colombia considers the wrecks found in its territorial waters part of its cultural heritage, which means that their contents cannot be sold.
The authorities have already announced their intention to create a museum of shipwrecks, which will be “a source of pride for Colombia, the Caribbean and the whole world.” Spain insists that the treasure is theirs because it was on board a Spanish ship.
The Khara-Kara people, the Indians from Bolivia, also intervened in the conflict, declaring that it was they who should receive the treasure, since the Spaniards forced the locals to mine precious metals.
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