• Treasures from the world's most valuable shipwreck

    The ornate Atocha cross, is the most prized of all artifacts from the shipwreck

    By Germania Rodriguez Poleo -

    Treasures from the world's most valuable shipwreck are being displayed in New York 400 years after they sunk to the bottom of the sea off Florida's coast. The anticipated Winter Show in New York City this year offers a rare look into three historical items recovered from the the Nuestra Señora de Atocha shipwreck, including an emerald crucifix, a royal orb and a gold-and-emerald ring.

    The Nuestra Señora de Atocha and all its New World treasures, owned by Spain's King Philip IV, left Havana in early September 1622, carrying 265 people as well as 40 tons of silver, gold and assorted riches taken from Colombia, Peru, Mexico and Venezuela.

    But the Spanish galleon and its sister ship Santa Margarita sunk to the bottom of the ocean after a hurricane struck just days after the doomed voyage began, killing hundreds, including wealthy colonizers who brought their personal jewels.

    The cargo of gold, silver, copper, tobacco, and gem was so vast that it had taken two months to transport it onto the Nuestra Señora de Atocha. The treasures, many taken from Colombia's Muzo mine and worth an estimated $1.1billion today, sunk on the ocean floor from the Marquesas Keys to the Dry Tortugas, between 30 and 70 miles west of Key West.

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