Thursday, August 12, 2004


Post-Civil War treasure ship "SS Republic" reveals its secrets in september National Geographic


The following press release was issued by National Geographic today: Post-Civil War Treasure Ship Reveals Its Secrets In September National Geographic.

Bound from New York to New Orleans in October 1865, the SS Republic, carrying 59 passengers, 500 barrels of freight and thousands of gold and silver coins, sank in a hurricane some 100 miles off the coast of Georgia.

After a tenacious 12-year research effort, the wreck was located last year, 1,700 feet below the ocean surface, by Tampa, Fla.-based Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc (AMEX: OMR).

National Geographic documents the Republic's final journey, the search for the wreck and the amazing treasure the ship is yielding in the magazine's September 2004 issue.

"Treasure Ship Meets Perfect Storm," by Priit J. Vesilind with photographs by Jonathan Blair, tells of the harrowing experiences of the ship's passengers on that fateful last voyage, mostly through the letters of passenger William T. Nichols, and of the determination of shipwreck explorers, Odyssey co-founders Greg Stemm and John Morris, to find the Republic and recover the bounty of coins it contains.

Archaeological excavation of the Republic is continuing, and recovery operations have already netted more than 50,000 coins, including thousands of gold eagles, double gold eagles and silver half dollars, nearly all dating between 1838 and 1865. The collection contains some of the finest-known examples of U.S. gold coins from the period. The coins recovered to date should exceed $75 million in retail value. The face value of the coins recovered represents about 25 percent of the "$400,000 in specie" that research indicates was on board the Republic when it sank.

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