Wednesday, 31 January 2018

The SS Central America - 'Ship of Gold'

The SS Central America, the 'Ship of Gold' was a 280-foot (85 m) sidewheel steamer that operated between Central America and the eastern coast of the United States during the 1850s.

The ship sank in a hurricane in September 1857, along with more than 550 passengers and crew and 30,000 pounds of California gold. The wreck contributed to the financial panic of 1857.
The bullion had been shipped from San Francisco to the west coast of Panama, then sent by rail to the east coast and finally loaded onto the 280-foot steamship bound for New York.

A remotely operated vehicle (ROV) operated by the Columbus-America Discovery Group made the discovery on 11 September 1987. Significant amounts of gold and artifacts were recovered and brought to the surface by another ROV built specifically for the recovery. Treasure hunter Tommy Thompson found the S.S. Central America after convincing 161 local investors to fund his search.

Thompson with the “Eureka bar” an 80-pound gold ingot.
More than $50 million worth of gold bars, coins and dust that’s been described as the greatest lost treasure in U.S. history is about to make its public debut in California. The gold will be on display Feb. 22-24 at the Long Beach Convention Center. It's all for sale.

The 3,100 gold coins, 45 gold bars and more than 36 kilograms of gold dust recovered are expected to be hot sellers. Meanwhile Tommy Thompson continues to sit in an Ohio jail after fleecing his investors and deliberately refusing to disclose the whereabouts of hundreds of gold coins.