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Dry Tortuga Island Ferry

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The Dry Tortugas are also rich in maritime history. In 1989 Seahawk Deep Ocean Technology explored a shipwreck believed to be part of the 1622 Spanish treasure fleet. The wreck located in 1,332 ft (406 m) of water, yielded olive jars, copper, gold, silver, glass and other cultural artifacts. On September 6, 1622, the Nuestra Señora de Atocha was driven by a severe hurricane onto a coral reef near the Dry Tortugas, about 35 mi (56 km) west of Key West. Mel Fisher and his company discovered the wreck July 20, 1985. The estimated $450 million cache recovered, known as "The Atocha Motherlode," included 40 tons of gold and silver; there were some 114,000 of the Spanish silver coins known as "pieces of eight", gold coins, Colombian emeralds, gold and silver artifacts, and 1,000 silver ingots. In addition to the Atocha, Fisher's company, Salvors Inc. , found remains of several nearby shipwrecks, including the Atocha's sister galleon the Santa Margarita, lost in the same year, and the remains of a slave ship known as the Henrietta Marie, lost in 1700.

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Dry Tortugas

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Things To Do In Key West Tours and Activities