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Mel Fisher

( Archaeologist)

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Biography Mel Fisher
Mel Fisher called the king of the underwater world; about it still tell legends. Its headquarters is on board standing on the moorings Galleon: Fisher agents have been searching for a suitable size sailboat, . found it in Europe, . towed to Florida - and the best carpenters have transformed an old shoe in a replica of a Spanish sailing ship,
. Now it housed a museum, where Fisher put the best of their finds of gold coins and bars, chains, earrings and crucifix, diamonds and emeralds, magic stone bezoar, healing, according to legend, against all the diseases ...
. The giant body, knit from strong as a rock, Manila oak, three masts, high as a church tower, carved feed forty heavy guns, four desperadoes on board and a hold full of gold - such was the Spanish Galleon
. In the XVII century, they came out of Cadiz and across the harbor of Veracruz, and went to the Philippines, and then returned to Spain.

The money that was transporting a single ship could contain a small army. But floating safes differed unimportant maneuverability - Galleon died one after another. All of California's coastal zone is strewn with ship wreckage and gold coins, . of the sea are millions of dollars - in fact a royal crowns now costs about seventy thousand! But get close to him uneasy: anchors and frames overgrown corals, . mud sucked deep gold and diamonds,
. In order to raise the surface of one thousand dollars, we must spend ten thousand: Many hunters have drowned in a sea of their own state, not one of them a passion for Spanish gold cost the lives
. Half a century ago, Mel Fisher was poor, bezvesten and full of hope: he willingly undertook everything that could bring money, and in each new case put his whole soul.

. In the early thirties, Indiana was rich enthusiasts
. Mel, with high cheekbones kid from a small provincial town, all the time inventing something - a diving helmet, made of old pots, garden hose and a bicycle pump, still adorn the shelf in the admiral's cabin, his Galleon. He worked on his father's farm and played trumpet in a local orchestra, and then studied engineering at the University of Alabama, and during the Second World division Fischer went after the army and restore the roads and bridges. After the war he moved to California and started raising chickens. Here was born and passion, which became a matter of his life.

The sea was very close, and Mel opened his farm in a small shop diving equipment: he sold it, and hired out. Daughter of the owner neighboring farms, red-haired and laughter-loving Dolores, took lessons from him diving - a few months later it all ended in marriage. Soon Phishers sold all his chicken stock - the underwater world was much more interesting and brought quite a lot of money. Mel and Dolores gave diving lessons, made films about sea inhabitants and gradually infected with a passion for treasure: great treasures lie very close to - people diving could touch them with his hand.

. In 1612 storm threw and smashed on the coastal cliffs "Silver Fleet" - then Spain had nothing to contain the army
. In 1715 he went to the bottom of a convoy transporting gold and emeralds - in order to fill it holds, gold miners of Potosi and hunted in the emerald mines of Colombia Indians worked for about a year. The storm did not spare anybody: admiral, who commanded the galleon "Nuestra Senora de Atocha", gathered his officers and discussed with them the last sonnet by Lope de Vega, prayed and was drowned, not to disgrace the dignity of the Castilian hidalgo. The exact coordinates of the shipwreck has been preserved. Mel had to find a needle in a haystack - with the money borrowed, and even all the time while under the watchful eye of state authorities, ready to seize any valuable discovery. He had no chance, but it was Mel Fisher ...
. To draw attention to the search, his wife set a world record for the women stay under water: Dolores sat in the submersible 55 hours, drank juice and ate bananas and read the damp newspaper
. And we have not talked about money - they were both willing to hurt himself in a cake for his dream. Fisher succumbed to the pressure of even a well-worn divers. "Silver Fleet" is now looking for a team of enthusiasts, but for investors, Mel developed a number of ingenious methods. He offered each of them to take part in the search - gave an aqualung and a metal detector, and then go someplace before carefully prikopal two or three gold coins. Lucky rejoicing on the shore in the evening around the campfire for his health drink the whole team, treating fried outdoor lobsters and lobsters ... And the bankers who lent money Mel (to Fisher's not able to make anyone), quickly became his supporters.

Treasure hunt continued for more than 20 years. Great Spanish anchor, a few gold coins, scrap gold chain, a pair of worn in silver pistols - random findings awakened imagination, but unpaid bills grow by leaps and bounds. For years, Fisher's success drove the nose: before you give their treasures, the sea has demanded from him the victim ...

In 1975, a wave flipped the boat in which were the eldest son of Mel Dirk, his wife Angela and two divers. Killing all: a storm blew up suddenly, and hunters did not have time to put on lifejackets. Those who managed to stay on the water, the waves broke on the coastal cliffs ...

After the death of his son Fisher has changed beyond recognition. Previously he was a great optimist and each new morning met with the phrase: "Seize today!" Now Mel has become gloomy and seemed stubbornly sought death. He crossed the swimming lagoon teeming with sharks, went out into the stormy sea on fragile bocho. One boat is tipped over, and it saved only the case: from a passing cargo ship spotted Rights. By the time Mel was in the high seas for several hours ... He seemed to be defying the elements, and it, checking it for strength, finally gave way.

. One day Greg Wareham, a diver from the team of Fisher, found a scattering of silver bars, marked with the Spanish crown, - "Nuestra Senora de Atocha" Mel opened the contents of their holds
. Soon divers found large submerged rock in front of a bustling metal detector squealed: under a pile of mud lay a few thousand large silver ingots and three thousand boxes of gold coins.

. Treasure Hunt opened a truly fantastic scene: at the bottom among the algae and corals, a lazily floating colorful fish spreads a carpet of gold doubloons, each of which cost no less than ten thousand
. Fischer washed sludge with invention of the device that resembled a giant vacuum cleaner: fell down a big pipe, suction sediment. When the compressor is turned off, on duty in-situ diver gasped: it poured rain of emeralds and amethysts, shimmering in the sea water gems slowly circling and sank to the bottom - there were several thousand ...

. "Nuestra Senora de Atocha" was carrying stones for the Spanish king, but most of the emeralds in the holds galleon was smuggling
. Giant diamond earrings, whose weight would not be able to withstand any woman's ear, made specifically in order to hide the stones from taxation.

. Every day brought new discoveries, and divers photographed on a small underwater reefs, caught heaps of silver ..
. Twenty percent was found by staff, twenty - investors, the rest goes to the very Mel Fisher.
Since then, his luck did not leave. He found an equally rich galleon "Santa Margarita", then caravel conquistadors: to bombard it raised, corroded with rust helmets, bronze compasses and tips halberds. Fischer became a legend of the California coast and in life entered the history of underwater archeology - so many more fantastic finds no one else has.

. Those, . who write about Fisher, . consider it lucky But people, . close knowing Mel, . prefer not to talk about it - until his death, . followed in December 1998, . he was never able to forgive myself for, . not stopped frolicking in the sea of Dirk and reminded him about the storm warning ...,

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