Screenshot from the video showing the San Jose wreck off the coast of Cartagena. Photo: AFP
Navy Colombia conducted four probes by diving a remote control vehicle to a depth of nearly 950 meters off the coast of this country, where the San Jose boat “rested” for more than three centuries.
The results showed that the ancient ship was not affected by “human intervention.” The cannons were covered with sand, along with crockery, glass bottles and gold coins were still intact. Part of the ship’s bow and hull can be seen to have been invaded by algae and shellfish.
Colombian authorities say they have stumbled across two more shipwrecks during the San Jose exploration mission: a large colonial-era schooner and a post-colonial schooner.
“Thanks to technological equipment and the efforts of the Colombian Navy, we were able to capture images with a precision never before seen,” said President Ivan Duque. He said the wreck was kept intact for future salvage purposes. When that happens, however, Colombia will have to contend with Spain and a group of indigenous people in Bolivia.
On November 27, 2015, the Colombian Navy found the location of the San Jose shipwreck thanks to an automatic probe called REMUS 6000. From the pictures taken on the seabed, archaeologists have determined This is the legendary ship San Jose thanks to dozens of bronze guns engraved with the characteristic dolphin image. The government has classified the location of the ancient ship as a form of state secret.
However, this large three-masted boat was once owned by the King of Spain Philip V when it was sunk by British Navy warships near the Colombian port city of Cartagena in 1708. Only a few of them 600 sailors survived. At that time, it was filled with precious wealth, estimated at 17 billion USD at current exchange rates. Before being discovered in 2015, the San Jose boat was always the target of hunters treasure. Experts believe it contains at least 200 tons of gold, silver and emeralds.
Colombian law considers wrecks found within its territorial waters as part of its national cultural heritage, which means that the entire contents of the ship cannot be sold.
Meanwhile, Spain claims this wealth as their own, while the indigenous group of Qhara Qhara in Bolivia claim to be the beneficiary of the treasure because the Spaniards themselves persecuted their ancestors to exploit them. extract them in the past.
When the wreck was discovered, then-Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos hailed it as the most valuable treasure ever found in world history. He proposed to fund the San Jose boat restoration project by selling off a portion of the treasure.
President Ivan Duque later ordered that the plan be stopped to ensure that the wreck remained intact within Colombian territory. The authorities of this country have announced their intention to create a museum of shipwrecks to become a source of pride for Colombia, the Caribbean and the world.
Recovering the San Jose wreck nearly 1,000 meters below the surface of the sea was a technological and scientific challenge.
Watch the latest video released by the Colombian Navy about the status of the San Jose (source: CBS):
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