Watch (and Listen to) the Moment a Diver Finds Over a Million Dollars in Sunken Gold Coins.
by Owen James Burke
“Hohohohoho! Oh my! Oh man!” – couldn’t have put it any better myself. Photo via CBS.
Treasure hunters Eric Schmitt and family have been at it for over 50 years, but the Sanford, Florida family has yet to anything nearly as significant as this.
In July 1715–300 years ago last week, to be exact–a storm sent a dozen ships and over 1,000 men to their watery graves off Fort Pearce, Florida. Along with them went millions upon millions of dollars in gold and silver.
Photo: 1715 Fleet — Queens Jewels, LLC.
For the past two years, the Schmitts have been aboard their treasure hunting vessel, Aarrr Booty, tracking down these records with unprecedented success. But this single discovery of 52 coins, one of which worth $500,000 alone (possibly the larger doubloon he extracts at the end), is their best find yet.
Schmitt with his find, which, like most of his other discoveries, was lying along the beach off Fort Pierce in just 15 feet of water. Photo: 1715 Fleet — Queens Jewels, LLC.
Of the 52 coins the Schmitts have pulled from this particular wreck, only 6 are known, according to Brent Brisben, co-founder of 1715 Fleet — Queens Jewels LLC, the company that owns the rights to the dive site.
Ultimately, the Schmitts will retain about half of the treasure. The rest will be divided among Queens Jewels LLC and the state of Florida, whose 20% share will be exhibited in museums.
Read more at the Orlando Sentinel. -OJB