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Thread: Lord Archibald Hamilton on 1715 fleet salvage...in Florida AND the Bahamas ?

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  1. #1

    Sep 2012
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    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Lord Archibald Hamilton on 1715 fleet salvage...in Florida AND the Bahamas ?

    Some time ago I posted a very early clipping from the Boston News Letter. The clipping could be interpreted to say that 1715 fleet ships sank in Florida AND the Bahamas. I did not give this much credence...it just seemed unlikely for ships to have been cast ashore on both sides of the Bahama Channel by the same storm. I assumed the clipping merely was saying that ships from the Bahamas had gone to Florida to conduct salvage. Here is the clipping:

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	837380 Boston News Letter 12-26-1715

    Lord Archibald Hamilton was governor of Jamaica in 1715. After the wreck of the Spanish Fleet, he signed several "commissions" for privateers to "salvage" the 1715 fleet treasure. Henry Jennings operated under a commission from Lord Hamilton, for instance. This was unusual and potentially very damaging because England and Spain were officially at peace at the time. Lord Hamilton was accused of having ulterior motives in signing these "commissions". It was said by some that he had a lust for Spanish Gold himself. Imagine that. He was arrested and carried back to England by the Royal Navy but was later freed. In 1718 he published a small book entitled, An Answer to an Anonymous Libel, in which he defended his actions. Make of it what you will, but the tenor of pages 77 and 78 seem to indicate that at least some salvage WAS carried out in the Bahamas...

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    Last edited by Jolly Mon; Aug 01, 2013 at 05:11 AM. Reason: spelling
    Mekong Mike likes this.

  2. #2
    us
    Jan 2012
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    As some of you are aware, I practice Psychic Archeology as an alternate means of research. It has been my contention for years that the 1715 ship carrying the Queens Dowry will not be found in Florida, because it is in the Bahamas. I think Spain did send a salvage vessel only to find it totally filled and immersed in sand. Without a practical means to salvage under those conditions, it still remains mostly intact buried under the sand, awaiting a modern day recovery.

    Had the Bahamas government not reneged on granting Salvage permits, this was to be one of my first salvage operations.


    If you are unfamiliar with Psychic Archeology/ Anthropology I am starting a website at Login - DELL'S PSYCHIC ARCHEOLOGY Dell

  3. #3

    Apr 2012
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    Dell: you say they reneged on permits, is that a permanent thing?


    Thanks,


    WHYDAH Diver

  4. #4
    us
    Jul 2013
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    It could be that one of the ships survived long enough to backtrack to the bahamas for repairs and then sank. On some charts the bahamas are listed as the florida keys, which confuses the searchers even more.

  5. #5
    us
    da book worm--researcher

    Feb 2007
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    lord Hamilton was a jacobite ( that favored the house of stuart- in the 1715 up rising but did not do so "openly" but rather with money gotten from from this raiding --being a shrewd politican he played "both sides" as well --he signed letters that allowed men like Jennings to "legally" pirate the Spanish wrecks --he had a stake also in the illegal trading along the "Spanish colonies" in south America * proof of this can be found in the book "funnel of gold" * in the book it states that a English owned bilandra class vessel and upon capture by Echervez's pataches off Portobello--the English captian said lord Hamilton was 25% owner of the vessel * (this is in addition too the well known French and dutch prize vessels that was taken ) it was a smallish vessel and was not brought back to port in south America and bought at sale as were the French and dutch vessel --it was instead sent directly to cuba with a small prize crew instead --later on it was sold to Ubilla in Havana , the vessel was the mary /. mari galaria ( name mary /mari - class or type / galaria )

    lord Hamilton was later on "recalled" to England --but at trail by a jury of his Scottish peers "was aquitted" --out of " English royal favor" but still rich --lord Hamilton lived out the rest of his days quite nicely.

    many small fast vessels raided the Spanish fleets and wrecksite areas , some of them ran into the "Spanish coast guard" type vessels sent to prowl around the wrecksites to catch the raiders , some were captured, but others escaped , no doubt the ones that fled only got to do so after a fight , no doubt some were carrying loot when they were set upon by the coast guard Spanish vessels -- in my point of view it is highly possible some of them might have sank close to shore while trying to make it home in the Bahamas.
    Last edited by ivan salis; Aug 01, 2013 at 08:54 AM.
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  6. #6

    May 2006
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    83 times
    I think you are confusing Lord Archibald with one of his many relatives, Ivan. He was definitely not a Jacobite, but a Whig supporter of the House of Hanover. You can background on him here: HAMILTON, Lord Archibald (1673-1754), of Motherwell, Lanark., and Riccarton and Pardovan, Linlithgow. | History of Parliament Online

    Smithbrown

  7. #7
    us
    da book worm--researcher

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    Jennings was a well known jacobite * ( he was lord Hamiltons go between) Hamilton was playing both sides --so no matter who won his position would be secure * the jocobites lost , however the English crown had ideals that Hamilton might not be quite on the up and up and recalled him --he was found innocent by trail but fell from favor with the English royals

    history often fails to note that politicans , often like play both sides of the fence so that they can't lose , no matter who wins.
    Last edited by ivan salis; Aug 01, 2013 at 09:27 AM.

  8. #8

    May 2006
    490
    83 times
    Well, the author of the Book on 18th century members of Parliament disagrees with your view - he specifically states "There was not a shadow of suspicion, however, that he shared his brother’s alleged Jacobite sympathies. Hamilton was a staunch Presbyterian, and religious conviction gave a Whiggish cast to his political outlook." The last thing a staunch presbyterian would want in 1715 is a catholic Stuart back on the throne.

  9. #9
    us
    Jan 2012
    Haines City, FL
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    Quote Originally Posted by whydahdiver View Post
    Dell: you say they reneged on permits, is that a permanent thing?


    Thanks,


    WHYDAH Diver
    Who Knows? Those who know what happened seem afraid to say anything. I've heard some excuses offered of which none appear valid. After a Gung Ho start, the government suddenly went silent and no one will talk about it. It's as if their promise of offering 5 Search/Salvage permits never existed.

    Perhaps other Salvors here that were involved in the Bahamas permit process can shed some light? Dell

  10. #10
    us
    da book worm--researcher

    Feb 2007
    callahan,fl
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    true * but even worse than that would to be out of high "position" ( butter up both sides --so that no matter who wins --you come out of it --ok) --if Hamilton was indeed so anti jacobite * why would he give a royal commission Henry Jennings to go privateering ? --- Jennings was widely known as jacobite , even after taking the kings pardon --many years later in 1745 when the second revolt took place jennings again set to sea and this time was hung for his jacobite ways.

    history books are written by those who want you to know their 'take" on the matters ,historically speaking --often the "backroom dealings" are not recorded for history --look at todays politicans -- many of their twisted dealings and crooked ways will never be seen in the pages of a future "history book".--"his story" is often more like it.
    Last edited by ivan salis; Aug 01, 2013 at 11:39 AM.

  11. #11

    May 2006
    490
    83 times
    Because sometimes you have too much to lose. Hamiliton was very much identified with the Whig- Hanoverian cause. It is very much in his interest to make sure the Jacobites did not win. You do much better to see what people actually did, rather than any "backroom dealings" Hamiliton had spent his life supporting the anti-Jacobites- why change?

    Are you sure about Jennings' Jacobite leanings? nothing I can find mention it and, fare from being executed in the wake of the '45, seem to suggest he died in the West Indies. Pirates of the Caribbean: Henry Jennings

    I would have thought that at this period the British were just united in walloping Spain.

  12. #12
    LM
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    It makes no sense whatsoever.

    Why in gods name would a ship that just got its ass kicked so badly as to need emergency harbor- having just wittnessed the majority of its fleet reduced to rubble- turn back out into open water and head for the Bahamas when St. Augustine was not only basically equidistant (St Augustine actually a bit closer), but allowed for a coastline bearing that would've permitted the crew to survive should the ship break up in the meantime?

    No chance a captain with a ship in that condition, having endured what they just endured, already within sight of the undeveloped coast but within a days sail to a major friendly port, is going to turn his ship- in such bad condition that it's going to break up upon arrival, should this 'theory' be true- back out into open waters and try to make the islands.

    No chance.

    The only possibility that allows for this is that the ship turned to open seas during the storm, lost contact with the fleet, survived the hurricane and appraised the islands as being closer than St. Augustine, however in order for this to be the case, for it to have sunk within Bahamian Territory after surviving the crossing from Florida, there would have been survivors. It's a virtual certainty that the historical record would reflect this, which it does not.
    Last edited by LM; Aug 01, 2013 at 08:51 PM.
    "There comes a time in every rightly-constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure..." - Twain

  13. #13
    us
    Pirate of the Martires

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    LM you're right. There is no evidence that any of the 1715 fleet vessels wrecked in the Bahamas.

  14. #14

    Sep 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by LM View Post
    It makes no sense whatsoever.

    Why in gods name would a ship that just got its ass kicked so badly as to need emergency harbor- having just wittnessed the majority of its fleet reduced to rubble- turn back out into open water and head for the Bahamas when St. Augustine was not only basically equidistant (St Augustine actually a bit closer), but allowed for a coastline bearing that would've permitted the crew to survive should the ship break up in the meantime?

    No chance a captain with a ship in that condition, having endured what they just endured, already within sight of the undeveloped coast but within a days sail to a major friendly port, is going to turn his ship- in such bad condition that it's going to break up upon arrival, should this 'theory' be true- back out into open waters and try to make the islands.

    No chance.

    The only possibility that allows for this is that the ship turned to open seas during the storm, lost contact with the fleet, survived the hurricane and appraised the islands as being closer than St. Augustine, however in order for this to be the case, for it to have sunk within Bahamian Territory after surviving the crossing from Florida, there would have been survivors. It's a virtual certainty that the historical record would reflect this, which it does not.

    I am not advocating the theory that 1715 fleet ships wound up wrecking in the Bahamas. At first, I thought the idea ludicrous. I still think it unlikely, but not impossible.

    I don't think any Spanish treasure fleet captain would have willingly chosen to sail into the Bahamas, an island group very much a "Republic of Pirates" in 1715. LOL. There would probably have been no survivors, recorded or otherwise.

    It is interesting to note that after the 1641 fleet disaster, the fleet Capitana reached Spain, the Almiranta, Concepcion chose to sail for Puerto Rico and at least one ship, El Carmen, Captain Hermenegildo Lopez, chose to sail to St. Augustine (and made it). Concepcion was as close to sinking as any vessel could possibly be...yet she chose an attempt to make Pureto Rico over St. Augustine which was undoubtedly closer.

    If the 1715 fleet was broken-up early in the storm, all bets are off.
    A hurricane moving west over the Ft. Pierce area would generate strong westerly winds over the Bahama Channel area to the south...it is not impossible that a dismasted vessel, one able to claw her way off the lee shore during the storm, might not find herself stranded on the Little Bahama Bank in the aftermath. Not likely, perhaps, but certainly not "impossible". And if she found herself stranded on the northern portion of the Little Bahama Bank, there might be several reasons for there to be no survivors to be listed in the historical record.

  15. #15
    LM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly Mon View Post
    If the 1715 fleet was broken-up early in the storm, all bets are off.
    I think we can all safely say that the treasure evidence from Canaveral proves somewhat conclusively that the fleet was at least partially disintegrated during the storm. I just can't envision any possible scenario where a captain of a sinking ship, having just endured a storm *that* brutal and already on a coastline bearing, turns to open water and goes for the Bahamas rather than St Aug.

    On the 1641 Plate Fleet, Villavicencio was off St. Augustine but thought he was in the Northern Bahamas.
    His reasoning was probably that if the ship could make the 400 miles (he thought) to St Augustine, it was good to make the 800 to Puerto Rico. His decision would certainly have been different had he realized that he was actually 2000 miles away from PR and literally sitting right off St. Augustine.

    He did that because he was very disoriented and had literally no idea where he was. Given the route of the 1715 fleet and where they were when the storm hit, it's extremely unlikely that was the case for any of their captains.
    Last edited by LM; Aug 01, 2013 at 11:43 PM.
    "There comes a time in every rightly-constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure..." - Twain

 

 
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