Nearly 400 years before Keith Webb’s Blue Water Ventures—joint-venture partner of Mel Fishers Treasures—began searching for the remains of the 1622 fleet shipwreck Santa Margarita in the Florida Straits, two 17th century salvors, Captain Gaspar de Vargas and Havana businessman Francisco Núñez Melián, used Florida "Indians" and pearl divers from the Caribbean island of Margarita to recover treasure from the sunken galleon.
On April 21, 2010, BWV diver Gavin Rall (left, with Capt Dan Porter, right) surfaced with this carved, polished greenstone artifact. Stone amulet-type artifacts like this one, with holes drilled through their breadth, are commonly called "gorgets" and have been located on archaeological sites throughout Florida. Did this gorget fall from the neck of one of Gaspar de Vargas' or Francisco Melián's divers as they sought to recover the treasures of the Santa Margarita?
Gorget side view, with drill holes visible