Latest News

    • November, 2017
      Salvage Operations Update

      The Magruder went out last week to the Quicksands area on the Atocha site. The crew recovered 1 silver coin, 2 encrusted objects and a good sized pottery sherd. The weather was great until the wind picked up and a high pressure system started Friday, causing the crew to come back to the docks earlier than expected.

      "For years, people have asked me if I have any exciting shark stories. After all my time working the Atocha site, I've never had a good shark story until this week's trip. We set up our anchor lines and we were getting ready to tighten them. I was in the wheelhouse and I saw something splashing about 100ft off the bow. I saw a shark and realized he had a porpoise in his mouth! We believe it was a tiger shark about 8-10 feet long. The porpoise was able to escape at first, but the shark caught him again and they continued to struggle. We think that the porpoise was able to escape in the end. It was amazing to see something so fierce, yet natural, and to have a front row seat to witness it. After this sighting, the crew was a little nervous to go in the water because the visibility was still low." Andy Matroci

      Investor Relations Newest Addition: Zac Preston
      Zac Preston, Mel Fishers Treasures
    • We are pleased to announce the transition of Zac Preston from the Mel Fisher's Treasures' Sales Floor to our Investor Relations Department. Zac's background in the boating industry, his knowledge of the Mel Fisher Story and passion for treasure hunting make this a natural transition between departments.
    • Having been a member of our team during previous Division Week 2017, he is a familiar face to many members of our expedition.
    • In his new role, Zac will be working alongside Onett on the Investor Relations Team to make your experience as a member of the expedition as rewarding as possible!
    • "Before I lived in Key West, the Mel Fisher Museum was my first stop on my vacations to the island. It is a dream come true for me to be a part of this organization! I admire the determination and drive Mel Fisher had and I look forward to coming to work every day to carry on Mel's dream." Zac Preston
    • Please join us in welcoming Zac to the team!
    • Today's the Day!

    • October, 2017
      Aerial Fly Over of Atocha & Margarita Site
      We are very excited to see if the storm may have uncovered some treasure out on the Atocha and Margarita sites! The Margarita main pile was actually spotted visually after a storm uncovered it. We completed an aerial survey over the sites. The goal for this first flight was to insure we could embed the GPS and Altitude data into the metadata for each photo. We will try again once things clear up! Stay tuned for more exciting news as the weather calms down and things heat up on the sites!
    • Salvage Operations Updates
    • Magruder
    • Last week mother nature gave us a short weather window allowing the Magruder to head out to Emerald City. A few enthusiastic Mel Fisher's Expedition members made the trip out to the site to capitalize on the weather window that was closing quickly. Once aboard the Magruder, the group sifted for Emeralds until that weather window closed even quicker than planned. The boat crew secured the Magruder and the members onboard took a ride to the Marquesas to find calmer water for the transfer back to the Huntress. Although we were only able to get 2 sifts in, and no emeralds turned up, it was still a great day on the water and everyone had a lot of fun on the adventure. Just like Mel said in 1975, "If treasure hunting was easy, everybody would be doing it." 
    • Dare
    • Now that the season for "Lost Merchant" is over, It is time to transition the boat back to the equipment need for salvage operations on the Atocha and Margarita site.The crew of the Dare has been working hard this week to get the mailboxes back on so that we can head out to the quicksands area as soon as the weather clears. Papo and the crew are anxious to get out to the site to see what Hurricane Irma turned up!

    • October, 2017
      Salvage Boats Update!

    • As you know from previous messages, Mel Fisher Expeditions has resumed all operations after Hurricane Irma. We feel fortunate because much of the Keys are still in need of major help and support. Many keys residents have lost everything and our thoughts and prayers go out to them.


      So what's happening moving forward with our salvage operations?


      Now that the worst is over, we're hoping that hurricane Irma may have uncovered a few prizes for us on the Atocha and Margarita trails! To give you an idea how much a hurricane as powerful as Irma can change the seafloor, consider this; the Cayman Salvager is a 137 foot vessel that was sunk in Key West as an artificial reef. It sits in about 96 feet of water and during Irma it was moved over 300 feet across the ocean floor! Most of the area surrounding the Atocha and Margarita debris trail is known as the Quicksands and if you are diving in this area it looks like a desert with rolling sand dunes. During normal weather patterns these underwater sand dunes shift and change. Maybe it's time for Mother Nature to uncover some of the treasure that has been resting undisturbed on the ocean floor since 1622!


      This week while the wind and seas are still too rough to work on the site we have been discussing plans to fly a plane over this area of both wreck sites and take digital photos of any anomaly's that stand out and mark their position with a handheld GPS for the boats to check out. We're looking at doing this sometime next week so stay tuned for more information on this.


      Currently the Dare is being kept at our hurricane hole in Jacksonville due to the unsafe condition off the east coast of Florida. If you've been watching the Weather Channel at all you've seen them reporting on the 10-13 foot seas off of New Smyrna Beach just south of Jacksonville! This strong on-shore wind has been building the seas since hurricane Maria passed by last week and we haven't been able to get a window of calm weather to get the Dare back offshore for her return to Key West. We're hoping to get them underway by early next week before another tropical system has a chance to spin up.


      It was a very productive season on the Lost Merchant project in terms of the amount of search area we covered before the hurricanes started rolling through. We had three hurricanes that kept us moving the Dare to avoid their wrath. Once Irma passed, we had tropical force winds from Jose, and then Maria.


      As you know, we have a small window of opportunity to search for the Lost Merchant each year and this season was a battle all the way but we did generate some good targets and will be processing all of the side scan and magnetometer data over the next few months.


      The Magruder made it through the Hurricane with flying colors, but after a mechanical inspection we found that the power of Irma's winds forced rain water up the exhaust pipe on one of the generator motors preventing it from starting. The crew got on it right away and the problem has been resolved. At this time the Magruder is fueled, provisioned and ready to resume the search along the Atocha Trail. We expect the weather to keep us at the dock for at least another week, but we are ready to go!

      The Sea Reaper evacuated to Mexico and after Irma passed, the crew went out to the Saint Margarita site. The Sea Reaper is working toward our quest to recover the missing section of the Santa Margarita. Work started along the Eastern side of the main wreck scatter in an area that had no previous excavation. Material was light for the most part. On the very first excavation, the team recovered a lead musket ball, which was the first of 49 recovered throughout the day. We always get excited finding musket balls in a new area because more often than not, divers tend to find gold artifacts in the vicinity. Mel used to always say that "lead leads to GOLD!" The next day, musket balls continued coming up, totaling 76 for the trip! Aside from the occasional olive jar sherd or encrusted object, very little material was being recovered. The following day, Captain Dan Porter decided to move to an area along the main trail that had light excavation. From there, they concentrated on the Western section of the site, finding lite material including lead sheathing, olive jar sherds and ballast. Then, on the last excavation of the day, a diver surfaced with a silver coin and an encrusted object.


      Stay tuned for more exciting news as the weather calms down and things heat up on the sites!

    • Sptember, 2017
      Boats and building OK!

    • Mel Fisher's Treasures is proud to be part of the resilient Key West community. Our hearts go out to those who've lost their homes and to the brave men and women who are working day and night to put the Keys back together. We are very happy to announce that our staff is accounted for and safe! Along with our staff, the museum, our stores and our salvage boats made it through the hurricane unharmed. Once we get power and water back in Key West, we will clean up and get back to treasure hunting! Today's the day!
    • Magruder docked in Stock Island

    • Over view of Mel Fisher's Treasures Greene Street, store and Museum

    • Dare Boat safely docked in Jacksonville

    • August, 2017
      Lost Merchant Update!

    • Our crew on the Dare worked 24/7 on the Lost Merchant area. They surveyed approximately 220 linear nautical miles with a side scan swath width of 350 meters as well as covering the area beneath the side scan sonar with a magnetometer. There's a few interesting targets that we will dive with Dolores in the weeks to come!.

    • June 11, 2017

    • The Dare found 3 silver coins this week on the Atocha Trail. The Magruder found a gold artifact on June 11th.

    Watch the Magruder crew's reaction to the gold find! We recovered a similar artifact in 1985. We are excited for the boats to come in and bring the new find to the lab for our experts to examine! Stay tuned for more information from this week's trip.

    • May, 2017

    • Last week Mel Fisher's Expeditions members gazed into the past, celebrated the present and toasted to the future of treasure hunting!

    • You can view and download Division Week event pictures HERE! Congratulations to David and Shirley Wadell for winning the "Pin the Stern Castle on the Trail 2016" game. A 1/4 share contract has just been added to their account! The Dirkes Family won the costume contest at the Casa Marina Costume Gala.
    • Despite the windy weather and rough seas, we had a number of productive days on the Atocha and Margarita wreck sites! Our members, while diving alongside our crew members on the Dare, found a silver 8 real coin which had to be chiseled out of the bedrock.

    Katie Dirkes found a beautiful dark emerald while emerald sifting on the Magruder.

    The Sea Reaper crew found a silver coin and a cannon ball on the Margarita site.

    Thanks to our members for submitting their Diving and Emerald City photos taken during Division Week! We'll be announcing the upcoming July and September Emerald City dates soon. Just remember you must be an active member to go out to the site. On behalf of the entire Fisher Family, our dedicated divers and office crew, thank you for your encouragement, support and participation in Mel Fisher's Treasures' Expeditions.

    • March, 2017

    • Emerald Sifting Mel Fisher's Treasures
    • The Dare has completed setting up for emerald city airlifting and is currently working a hotspot where we have found dark emeralds, gold beads and gold jewelry in the past. The wind is forecast to be up and down for the next few days and the guys will be on site working through it. Yesterday afternoon calmed down a bit and we were able to get some good shots and a short video clip of the new airlift system in action.

    • March, 2017

    • Mel Fisher's Treasures Shipwreck Finds
    • With such a short weather window, the Sea Reaper team decided to try a new area that has had little known work in the past, to the East of the known scatter of shipwreck-related material. On the first day the divers recovered a variety of material from this area, including carpenters tools, lead musket balls, ship spikes and olive jar sherds. Divers continued to recover material from the same area on the second day of work, and during the most easterly excavation, Josh Fisher recovered a large three-legged iron pot, about 1 ft. in diameter and 1ft. tall. The pot was heavily encrusted but intact, and a very impressive find.
    • On the third day of excavations, the Sea Reaper moved 2,400 ft. to the North and worked in an area nearly 500 ft. East of the main area of known shipwreck scatter. A small iron key, as well as an encrusted sword handle was recovered by diver Rob Hill.
    • Stay posted for more finds as the weather begins to calm down and all the boats are on the sites.
    • Mel Fisher's Treasures Iron Pot Found 2017 Shipwreck Treasure

      • January, 2017

      • Happy New Year’s everyone! The weather finally gave our salvage team a break last week. The Sea Reaper and the Dare made it out to search the Atocha and Margarita trails for treasure.

      • Sunset over the Margarita Trail 
      • The Dare searched the deep mud west of the Atocha main pile and discovered some exciting artifacts.The crew found an Atocha timber over 8 feet long! In the last dig hole they located some large ballast stones and recovered an ornate silver object that might be part of the rim to a large silver platter. The timber was measured and documented then put back on the ocean floor with a tag attached. Since we have not found any silver bars past the “Bank of Spain”, one might deduce that most of the heavy artifacts (chest of coins, silver bars, and bronze cannons) are still fairly close to the main pile area or along the deep mud trail to its northwest. We will continue our exploration of the deep mud west of the Atocha main pile on our next trip.
      • Silver Bowl found on Atocha Site 2017 Mel Fishers Treasures
        Silver object found by the Dare on the Atocha Trail
      • Atocha Timber found on Atocha site 2017
        Atocha timber on the deck of the Dare
      • Captain Dan Porter and the Sea Reaper worked tirelessly on the Margarita trail up until the cold front hit the Keys. The crew recovered 31 pieces of pottery, 3 encrusted objects, 2 sword blade fragments and 6 pieces of lead sheathing from the hull of the Margarita. The 3 encrusted objects will go to our lab for conservation to unveil what treasure is underneath the encrustation! Captain Dan is a big part of our plans to put treasure on the deck in 2017.  He has archival data that talks about a second Margarita site the Spanish worked back in 1623 and 1624. Dan worked successfully with the Fisher Family in the past and has been brought back to find this elusive margarita pile.
      • Mel Fisher's Treasures
        Rob Hill and Levin Shavers bringing up artifacts 
      • Captain Andy and crew are finishing up installation of the Magruder's new 50 KVA generator.  We also have a pair of new mailboxes for the Magruder that need to be installed.  This installation will require pulling the Magruder out the water to build frames to hold the mail boxes in place.   


        As soon as we get a break in the weather our boats will head back out to the sites!


    Archive 2016
    Click here to see more 2016 stories


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