Colombia has found a 1708 shipwreck, believed to be the most valuable sunken treasure ever, off the coast of Cartagena. The treasure is worth $2 billion or more, and has been the object of searches and claims almost since the day the ship, the San Jose, was sunk by a British ship that was trying to take its cargo.
Now that Colombia's President has announced the find, can gold- and thrill-seeking scuba divers be far behind? Even the chance of a doubloon or two might be enough to perk up Colombia's tourist trade. It's estimated there are a thousand shipwrecks off Colombia's coast, but only a few with treasure.
The sinking took place during the War of the Spanish Succession, a dispute among Europe's growing powers over who would rule Spain. The ship was found by studying records of wind and currents in the Caribbean and clues from colonial archives. The searchers included a veteran of the search for the Titanic.
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