Treasures from a sunken ship. Artifacts from the Gold Rush put up for auction
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Tens of millions of dollars' worth of gold have been sold since many years ago from a ship that sank off the coast of South Carolina in 1857.
Scientists, historians and collectors believe that real treasures only have to to the auction. For the first time, hundreds of Gold Rush artifacts buried in the wreck of the Central America ship will be put up for public sale, writes Phys.org.
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The steamer known as the “Ship of Gold” sank on September 12, 1857 during a hurricane en route from Panama to New York. Then about 425 people died, 153 people were rescued. However, for more than a century, many of their belongings are still sealed and hidden at a depth of about 2.2 thousand meters under the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
The chief scientist of each dive mission, Bob Evans, believes that these items can provide an incredible insight into the daily lives of passengers as well as crew members, despite their mundane at first glance.
A few priceless rarities can fetch up to a million dollars at a public auction in Reno. These include the lid from the oldest known Wells Fargo treasure chest or the rough work pants of a Gold Rush miner, perhaps one of the first of their kind, made by or for Levi Strauss.
In addition to these, the historic collection includes an 1849 Colt pocket pistol and 1850s paper money found in a purse, an illustrated edition of the 1849 novel The Count of Monte Cristo, and a daguerreotype photograph on a metal plate of an unknown woman who has been identified as the Mona Lisa. from the depths”.
And there are gold nuggets, passenger tickets, pocket watches, brooches, Brooks Brothers shirts, a chastity belt, and even a case of beer bottles still full of beer.
Evans described the first-class cabins, which had fine china, liquor cabinets with crystal decanters, hair creams in ceramic jars, solid gold glasses, and even western clothing.
He said: “Really high society luxury and blue collar miners blended together.”
The discovery of the sunken ship was not without drama. There was a legal battle in Florida, Virginia and Ohio involving the treasure hunter who first found the steamer. However, he was accused of defrauding investors, which is why he has been in federal prison in Michigan since 2015.
The first gold coins and bars found during diving expeditions in 1980 were sold in 2000. In 2017, even more later-discovered items went up for sale. And at the beginning of this year, the ship's ringing was transferred to the US Naval Academy.
Researchers call this ship a real capsule of the California gold rush, which will no longer exist, because there are no more missing ships of those times.