“Titanic” treasure trove

A veritable “Holy Grail” shipwreck said to be worth billions could be exhumed from the depths of the Caribbean sparking a veritable gold rush in archeological circles, experts say. “There has been this persistent view of the galleon as a treasure trove. For the uninitiated, the San José galleon was the pride of Spain’s treasure fleet which was sunk off Baru Island, Cartagena in 1708 during the war of Spanish Succession, whereupon it lay undiscovered until 2015. It was notable for its record-breaking cache of emeralds, gold and silver whose total value is estimated at a cool $17 billion. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the ownership of the 131-foot vessel has been fiercely disputed with Spain, Colombia, Bolivian indigenous groups, and even the US laying claim to this holy grail of the high seas. Now, authorities claim that they’re setting politics aside and are planning to salvage the San José’s artifacts starting in April.

This project will be easier said than done. Not many vessels like the San José have ever been recovered while zero have been salvaged from tropical waters. “This is a huge challenge and it is not a project that has a lot of precedents,” declared Ann Coats, who sees her team as “pioneers” in this regard. The biggest challenge will be getting the 316-year-old wreck and its precious payload to the surface without it disintegrating. The Colombian government has kept the wreck’s coordinates a secret to prevent it from being looted. “The contents are really varied and we have no idea how the remains will react when they come into contact with oxygen.” “We don’t even know if it is possible to raise something out of the water.”

The ship was burning before it sank, which could’ve further compromised its structural integrity. Part of the challenge is that the San José — whose exact coordinates have been kept a secret by the Colombian government to prevent looting is located too deep for divers to access. So Colombia’s military is currently developing state-of-the-art salvage robots. These automated submersibles will be tasked with retrieving the items — an operation that will cost more than $4.5 million, CBS reported. In 2017, the world got a tease of the treasure footage depicted gold pieces, cannons, fine china, swords and clay vessels scattered across the ship. This latest expedition would reportedly be the biggest, most expensive and most complicated underwater recovery mission in history. A US salvage company Sea Search Armada, which claims they discovered the ship in 1981, said that the Colombians agreed to split the profits in exchange for the coordinates. In 2011, a US court ruled that the San José was the property of Colombia.

Wrecked Humor

Submarine ride to visit the wreck of the Titanic, $250,000.
Permanently join the wreck of the Titanic, priceless!

Joe Biden and Mayorkas get in a car wreck, who survives?

This announcement came over the speakers throughout the ship, “In about an hour we will be passing Harbour Island on the Port Side of the ship.” And then as an afterthought, “If anyone sees an island on the Starboard Side of the ship, please advise the bridge immediately.”

What sits at the bottom of the sea and twitches?
A nervous wreck.

March 22nd Birthdays

1976 – Reese Witherspoon, 1999 – Paola Andino, 1983 – Constance Wu, 1988 – Tania Raymond

1930 – Steven Sondheim,  1948 – Andrew Lloyd Weber  1947 – James Patterson, 1931 – William Shatner

Morning Motivator: