Ann Cargill

Divers close in on lost fortune of Ann Cargill, a scandalous star

From The Times


Divers believe that they have found one of Britain’s most romantic shipwrecks, reputedly laden with jewels owned by the wealthiest and most notorious actress and opera singer of her day.

When The Nancy was dashed to pieces off the Isles of Scilly in February 1784 the victims included Ann Cargill, a singer whose many affairs and elopements had scandalised London.

Her body was recovered a week after the sinking off the uninhabited island of Rosevear, with an infant – believed to be her illegitimate child – cradled in her arms.

But neither The Nancy nor Mrs Cargill’s vast fortune in jewels and cash – amounting to at least £200,000, according to newspapers at the time – was ever found.

Two local divers who claim to have identified the wreck believe that this was because until now searchers have been looking in the wrong place.