How many copies would you like to buy? Add to Cart Add to Cart. Add to Wishlist Add to Wishlist. Ship of Gold tells the story of the sinking of the SS Central America, a side-wheel steamer carrying nearly six hundred passengers returning from the California Gold Rush, two hundred miles off the Carolina coast in September Over four hundred lives and twenty-one tons of California gold were lost. It was the worst peacetime disaster at sea in American history, a tragedy that remained lost in legend for over a century. In the s, a young engineer from Ohio set out to do what no one, not even the United States Navy, had been able to do: establish a working presence on the deep-ocean floor and open it to science, archaeology, history, medicine, and recovery.
Kinder tells it in fascinating, exhaustive detail. The book takes hold of you from page one and never lets go.
Dave DeVore | Yankee Marina & Boatyard
September With nearly six hundred passengers returning from the California Gold Rush, the side-wheel steamer SS Central America encountered a violent storm and sank two hundred miles off the Carolina coast. More than four hundred lives and twenty-one tons of gold were lost. It was a tragedy lost in legend for more than a century—until a brilliant young engineer named Tommy Thompson set out to find the wreck. Navigating greedy investors, impatient crewmembers, and a competing salvage team, Thompson finally located the wreck in and sailed into Norfolk with her recovered treasure: gold coins, bars, nuggets, and dust, plus steamer trunks filled with period clothes, newspapers, books, and journals.
Read more Read less. Customers who bought this item also bought. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1. Finding Meaning in an Imperfect World. Iddo Landau. Exploration of the Valley of the Amazon, — William Lewis Herndon. Dennis M. Joseph Henrich. Alan Hirshfeld. Product description Amazon. In , the Central America , a sidewheel steamer ferrying passengers fresh from the gold rush of California to New York and laden with 21 tons of California gold, encountered a severe storm off the Carolina coast and sank, carrying more than passengers and all her cargo down with her.
She then sat for years, miles offshore and almost two miles below the ocean's surface--a depth at which she was assumed to be unrecoverable--until , when a deep-water research vessel sailed into the harbor at Norfolk, Virginia, fat with salvaged gold coins and bullion estimated to be worth one billion dollars. See all Product description. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? No customer reviews. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a product review. Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon. Verified Purchase. Thompson now sits in jail after being on the run for years and leaving investors empty handed.
What really happened? The site is still being worked from time to time with limited success. VIDEO: The Central America was traveling to the East Coast from Panama, with passengers returning with immense amounts of gold from their mining efforts during the California Gold Rush. The descriptions of the actual sinking of the boat during the hurricane are fantastic and devastating.
The development and implementation of the planned search and retrieval of the gold by Tommy Thompson and the Columbus-America Discovery Group during the s is extremely detailed and quite technical, but explained clearly for a patient reader with an interest. And the excitement makes it well worth it! An extremely fascinating true story. Jan 05, Dlora rated it really liked it Shelves: nonfiction.
Sarah lent me this book along with the companion pictorial coffee table book America's Lost Treasure and said I'd like it as much as Shadow Divers. That was almost true. Ship of Gold tells two stories--one of the dramatic sinking of the steamship Central America carrying passengers and gold from the goldfields of California the other story of Tommy Thompson and his amazing search to find and recover it in deep ocean water off the east coast. Gary Kindle talked about "shaping the story," which I Sarah lent me this book along with the companion pictorial coffee table book America's Lost Treasure and said I'd like it as much as Shadow Divers.
Gary Kindle talked about "shaping the story," which I thought was odd since it appeared to be chronologically presented -- first the story in the 's including wonderful snapshots of the people involved and the drama of being shipwrecked in a hurricane, and second, the story of Tommy Thompson's amazing mind and tenacity to dream up ways to find and recover the shipwreck. However, as I read along I ran into flashbacks which hightened suspense and heldback important information, which strengthened the straight-forward storyline. Whereas Shadow Divers is a story about deep-sea divers, Ship of Gold is a story about deep ocean robotic recovery.
Both are stories about people going beyond the limits to make discoveries on the bottom of the ocean. Tommy Thompson is especially amazing. People magazine said he was "the kind of guy who could fix a rocket shikp with two paper clips and a piece of twine. How can we make it less expensive? What if we tried a different approach? Can we make it more simple?
Why can't we try this idea? They did a lot of "what iffing" and came up with amazingly innovative abilities. I especially liked Tommy's attitude that this search wasn't about treasure seeking but about gaining new knowlege and exploring new frontiers.
The gold represented "a bonding of two centuries, two pioneering spirits, the opening of two frontiers. Jan 01, Pamela rated it really liked it Shelves: nonfiction. The historical background story was fascinating, and the tenacity and genius of Tommy Thompson was amazing. However as a history major and trained archivist, I thought the research and findings made by Bob Evans were astounding. It's amazing all the little stories that were tied together with this tale such as Mark Twain and how small historical clues gave Evans the knowledge he needed to guide the search.
By the end I couldn't put the book down so that I could find out what happened. Now I re The historical background story was fascinating, and the tenacity and genius of Tommy Thompson was amazing. Now I really want to find photographs of the gold so that I can see what they found.
Feb 07, Jason Blythe rated it liked it. Fascinating story about the recovery of gold off the East coast of the United States, the author provided great background of the ship carrying the gold and its passengers. The present day recovery process was also neatly detailed and overall satisfying book.
Apr 16, Elizabeth McAndrew rated it it was amazing. Such a great non-fiction book.
Highly recommend, great narrative, engaging, quick, interesting. Apr 06, Dick Reynolds rated it it was amazing. Author Gary Kinder spent over ten years researching and writing this book about the shipwreck of the S. Central America about two hundred miles off the coast of North Carolina in a severe hurricane. The ultimate tally of lives lost came to while , mostly women and children, were saved.
Kinder takes advantage of the surv Author Gary Kinder spent over ten years researching and writing this book about the shipwreck of the S. Fast forward now to the s when we meet Tommy Thompson, Ohio State University graduate in mechanical engineering, who also has a fascination with deep ocean exploration. After several false starts, he launches a project to locate the S.
Central America and explore the possibility of recovering its artifacts. He encounters many problems along the way, the first of which is money, but he convinces a group of wealthy investors to back him in a limited partnership.
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Tommy gathers together a ship, a crew, a small group of technicians, and conducts multiple runs along ocean paths calculated according to statistical probabilities of locating the wreck. But Tommy and his intrepid group are not alone out there on the ocean. In spite of his enforcing tight security on the venture, they are badgered by treasure hunters who suspect that Tommy is onto something big.
There are several surprises along the way and they deal with the actual artifacts found and in what condition they are when brought up to the surface. The added bonus for me was learning about deep water exploration, the technology of submersibles operating at extreme depths and pressures, and the discovery of biological life previously unknown to scientists and oceanographers.
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This is an excellent book and I recommend to everyone. Jul 31, Phil K rated it it was amazing Shelves: read-non-fiction. This book has it all. History, tradegy, triumph, drama, mystery, adventure, science, technology, economics.
This book is thick. I loved how much detail and background was given on the run-up to the shipwreck itself. Using the accounts of actual passengers and crew, I loved how personal the story was made. After the background and history of the wreck, the book turns to the story and background of its eventual recoverer. And I was very impressed how thorough and Extraordinary! And I was very impressed how thorough and exciting this part of the book was as well. I especially appreciated the writing around the business and legal aspects of the recovery venture.