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The E-Sylum: Volume 17, Number 43, October 19, 2014, Article 13

BOB EVANS REVEALS LATEST SS CENTRAL AMERICA DISCOVERIES

Speaking at this coming week's Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists Show in Pittsburgh, Bob Evans will detail some of the numismatic discoveries made this summer in recovery efforts from the wreck of the SS Central America. In a preview of the event, Bob has released a few tidbits of information, appearing here in The E-Sylum via Pat McBride of PAN. Thanks! -Editor

"The many treasures of the S.S. Central America" is the featured talk to be presented by Mr. Bob Evans, Chief Scientist and Historian of the S.S. Central America Project, and the Co-Discoverer of the shipwreck site. His presentation is scheduled for Friday, October 24th at 3:00pm at the Monroeville Convention Center, near Pittsburgh, PA and is part of the PAN Fall Coin Show and Convention.

Bob’s talk can be described best in his own words,

"The idea here is that the treasure we found this year is not monolithic, comprising several distinct and separate components spread over a wide area the size of a village. It included the remainder of the commercial shipment that we did not recover in 1988 - 1991. Then there was the ship's safe and the wonders within, including what appears to be the ship's actual business operating funds, unlike any other treasure I know. The safe also held what appear to be some passenger consignments, including a treasure vest that would allow the owner to wear his wealth while transporting it. (Amazing!)"

"Then there are many of what we dubbed "coin piles," fairly coherent deposits of coins found in the debris field and within the shipwreck apart from the commercial shipment. Several of these would qualify as amazing treasures themselves if found in an abandoned building or buried in a garden. Each is a time capsule of a particular person's style, nationality, perhaps their profession. Interesting is that none can be tied to a specific person, even though we looked for that kind of evidence and found many engraved pieces of jewelry with names and initials. My conclusion at the moment is that the jewelry must have been gifts intended for east coast recipients, or payments taken for gambling or other debts. (Fascinating!)"

Bob is also our featured banquet speaker on Friday evening. We have held a block of tickets for those that may still want to come even though we are past the RSVP deadline. Just email us at pancoins@gmail.com. PAN would like to make this unique event available to as many as possible. More information can be found on the PAN website.

For more information on the PAN Show, see:
www.pancoins.org

The 2014 at-sea recoveries took place over five months, from mid-April until mid-September. Here is an excerpt from one of Odyssey Marine Exploration's monthly reports to the Federal Court, this one covering July 16 to August 15, and found on their website. -Editor

SS Central America coins Over 2,000 individual items were recovered during this reporting period including over 1,000 gold coins in a wide range of denominations, dates and mint marks, including privately-minted gold coins and rarer smaller denomination gold coins. 61 pieces of gold jewelry were also recovered. Following a pattern seen during early jewelry recoveries, many jewelry pieces were crafted of large gold nuggets.

The cultural heritage artifacts recovered include luggage tags, pieces from a music box, a padlock with key, brass bullet molds, and several daguerreotypes and ambrotypes.

The daguerrotypes and ambrotypes recovered from the SS Central America shipwreck site have been hand- transported to a specialist photography conservation lab where they are being assessed before active conservation begins.

SS Central America padlock SS Central America photo

To read the complete article, see:
Report on Activities at SS Central America Shipwreck Site July 16, 2014 – August 15, 2014 (www.shipwreck.net/documents/OMECourtReport14-4.pdf)



Wayne Homren, Editor

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