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   Gold/Mining/EnergyOMEX - Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc


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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (22)5/23/2007 6:57:24 PM
From: MJ
   of 61
 
Glenn

I can see why you enjoy the story on OMR. It is truly fascinating.

Edward's supporting OMR warms my heart. I would like to see more exploration if not my OMR by other experts.

Wonder what the MSM will do with this story on Edwards.

mj

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To: MJ who wrote (23)5/23/2007 7:32:22 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 61
 
mj,

I have two book recommendations for you:

Gary Kinder's "Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea," is an account of the discovery and salvage of the Central America, a steamer laden with gold that went down in the Atlantic in 1857.

amazon.com

While not a hunt for treasure, Robert Kurson's "Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II," an account of the discovery of a previously unknown U-boat that sunk off the coast of New Jersey, is very good.

amazon.com

Both books are very entertaining.

The MSM will probably treat the Edwards disclosure as another example of how his personal life is at odds with his populist rhetoric. While I am not a fan of Edwards, and it is hard to imagine any circumstances that would have me casting a vote on his behalf, I think that he is getting a bad rap for being "out of touch" with the "common man," whoever that is. Perhaps I am being too charitable, but I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt when it comes to his expressions of concern for those less well off. His need to be politically correct and not draw attention to his wealth will temper his public reaction to the discovery.

Regards,

Glenn

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (24)5/26/2007 4:04:16 PM
From: MJ
   of 61
 
Glenn

Thank you for recommending the books. I read the synopsis and will definitely order.

Your remarks about John Edwards are on target. I don't believe you are being charitable----I do also think Edwards has the people of Carolina and America at heart.

As a voter, I have no difficulty separating Edwards the candidate from his interest and investment in OMEX

This find sent me back, as no doubt other geneaology buffs are doing, to seeing what is new on our families' maritime ancestors.

Regards to you

mj

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (24)5/26/2007 4:08:43 PM
From: MJ
   of 61
 
Glenn

Thank you for recommending the books. I read the synopsis and will definitely order.

Your remarks about John Edwards are on target. I don't believe you are being charitable----I do also think Edwards has the people of Carolina and America at heart.

As a voter, I have no difficulty separating Edwards the candidate from his interest and investment in OMEX

This find sent me back, as no doubt other genealogy buffs are doing, to seeing what is new on our families' maritime ancestors.

Regards to you

mj

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To: MJ who wrote (26)7/13/2007 9:43:49 AM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 61
 
Spain deploys its navy to deal with Odyssey. Another interesting chapter in the already fascinating saga of Odyssey.

Spain seizes ship in treasure row

The Spanish Civil Guard has intercepted a boat operated by a US company amid a row over treasure from a shipwreck.

The guard had been ordered by a Spanish judge to seize the vessel as soon as it left the British colony of Gibraltar.

Gibraltar officials and Odyssey Marine Exploration, which owns the ship, said Spain had boarded the ship illegally as it was in international waters.

In May, Odyssey said it had found $500m (£253m) in coins from a 17th Century wreck somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean.

Madrid suspects the sunken galleon may either have been Spanish or have gone down in Spanish waters.

The salvaged booty, which included half a million silver coins and hundreds of gold objects, has already been flown back to the US.

'Threat of force'

After leaving Gibraltar, the Ocean Alert was picked up at about 0700 GMT on Thursday off Europa Point and sent to the Spanish port of Algeciras to be searched, the Civil Guard said.
__________

RULES OF THE WAVES

Seas and oceans governed by UN Laws of the Sea

Ownership of sunken property in international waters governed by the law of salvage and the law of finds

Law of salvage: If property is owned, those finding it are entitled to compensation for their salvage efforts

Law of finds: Salvor is entitled to all reclaimed property if it is proved to be abandoned

Spain insists it retains rights to all its sunken treasure
Odyssey intends its haul to be dealt with under US federal law, where previous judgements have sometimes granted exclusive rights to salvors
__________

The guard was investigating a possible "offence against Spanish historic heritage", it said in a statement.

Odyssey said the boarding was illegal and said the Civil Guard threatened to use force if Ocean Alert's captain did not follow orders. It said Spain had earlier promised the ship would be searched at sea.

"At this point, Odyssey is assuming that the action on the part of the Guardia Civil is a miscommunication between Spanish authorities," the Florida-based company said in a statement.

A spokesman for the governor of Gibraltar said the ship was in international waters at the time it was seized.

A lawyer for Odyssey, Allen von Spiegelfeld, told Reuters news agency that Spain had not sought permission to board Ocean Alert from officials in Panama, where it is registered.

"The owners of the vessel have contacted the Panamanian maritime authorities protesting the seizure on international waters," Mr von Spiegelfeld said.

Spain has launched legal action over the treasure and the wreck.

Some experts believe the wreck to be the Merchant Royal, an English ship carrying stolen Spanish treasure which sank in 1641.

US coin expert Dr Lane Brunner has said there is evidence the shipwreck was found off England's Cornish coast.

Odyssey has kept the location of its find secret, citing security and legal reasons.

Story from BBC NEWS:
news.bbc.co.uk

Published: 2007/07/13 09:52:34 GMT

© BBC MMVII

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (27)7/30/2007 9:43:38 PM
From: MJ
   of 61
 
Evening

A fascinating site reg. shipwrecks in the English Channel, with description of the Odessey Marine's recent find--------

electricbluefishing.com

mj

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To: MJ who wrote (28)8/27/2007 8:42:16 AM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 61
 
mj,

Thanks for posting that link. There is a lot of interesting material there. Given the continuing technological developments, there are going to be fewer and fewer undiscovered sites. The discovery of the Titanic, and the subsequent documentation of the find, still amazes me.

Regards,

Glenn

New Material at Wreck Site of Pirate Ship

August 8, 2007

By KATIE ZEZIMA

PROVINCETOWN, Mass., Aug. 7 — As pirate treasure goes, it does not look like much.

About the size of a small car, the mass of fused black metal is spotted with rust and studded with barnacles. It smells like low tide, and at one point Tuesday morning a crab scurried from under it.

But to Barry Clifford, an underwater explorer, and the two dozen or so people gathered at MacMillan Pier here on Tuesday morning to see it raised from the ocean after 290 years, the object is a treasure, a tangible piece of pirate lore.

“Look, it’s a piece of glass,” Mr. Clifford said excitedly as he scrutinized the object, which lay on a flatbed.

“I bet it’s a bottle of rum,” said Nelson Disco of Merrimack, N.H., who is vacationing here and watched the salvage operation.

Mr. Clifford has spent about 25 years looking for and salvaging the remains of the Whydah, a pirate ship sailed by Samuel Bellamy, who was known as Black Sam. The ship sank off the coast of Wellfleet, Mass., during a storm in April 1717.

The mass, about 12,000 pounds, is thought to be part of the wreck and to contain at least seven iron cannons. Mr. Clifford and his team plucked it from below 30 feet of sand last week.

The cannons twisted together and probably preserved numerous artifacts. The exact contents will be determined through X-rays in the next few weeks, but Mr. Clifford expects the concretion, as the mass is called, to contain coins, weapons and perhaps bone, as others have.

“This is the biggest thing we’ve brought up from the shipwreck in 25 years,” Mr. Clifford said. It may also prove to be the best clue yet as to where the more than five tons of gold and silver the ship supposedly carried may be.

Mr. Clifford found a piece of the ship’s hull in 1998 and was sure he was close to the mother lode. Nine years later it has not been found, but Mr. Clifford said this discovery led him to believe that the booty lay nearby, far beneath accumulated sand. Because the treasure and cannons were so heavy, Mr. Clifford said, they are probably near each other. “There’s nowhere for it to go but down,” he said.

Charles R. Ewen, a professor of archaeology at East Carolina University and a co-editor of “X Marks the Spot: The Archaeology of Piracy,” said anything new from the Whydah was significant because it was the only pirate ship that had been “unequivocally found” and offered clues about the pirating life.

“It sank with everything,” Professor Ewen said, “so the material you find with it is very good at comparing with other ships. It’s very important for history and capturing what it was really like to be a pirate, as opposed to Johnny Depp.”

Mr. Clifford said his crews would continue to comb the ocean floor. His discoveries are documented by the National Geographic Society, which is sponsoring a touring exhibition of the Whydah’s artifacts based at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Others are displayed at Mr. Clifford’s museum here, the Exhibition Whydah Sea Lab and Learning Center.

Although the gold and silver may still lie somewhere below, Mr. Clifford believes he has already hauled riches from the sea.

“It’s history, and people are learning,” Mr. Clifford said. “Every artifact that’s brought up is a treasure.”

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

nytimes.com

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (29)8/27/2007 8:46:14 AM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 61
 
Today's Washington Post has a good piece on Odyssey Marine Explorations and its legal battle with the Spanish government.

Will Finders Be Keepers of Salvaged Treasure?

17-Ton Haul of Silver and Gold From Atlantic Pits U.S. Firm Against Spain


By John Ward Anderson
Washington Post Foreign Service
Monday, August 27, 2007; A01

GIBRALTAR -- Returning 200 years ago from the New World to a Europe engulfed by the Napoleonic wars, Spanish Rear Adm. Don José Bustamente led a fleet of four frigates to a tragic homecoming. South of Portugal's Cape St. Mary, British warships spotted the Spaniards in October 1804 and ordered them to change course and sail for England. Bustamente refused, a battle erupted, and Spain's 36-gun Nuestra Se�ora de las Mercedes exploded and sank, "breaking like an egg, dumping her yolk into the deep," according to a Spanish account.

The ship took with it more than a million silver dollars freshly minted in Spain's American colonies, documents of the time suggest. The lost booty became the stuff of legend, one of the world's great sunken treasures.

This spring, modern technology caught up with sea-hunting lore when a U.S.-based salvage company, Odyssey Marine Explorations, announced that it had found a 17-ton hoard of silver and gold artifacts, including about 500,000 coins, at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. Estimated value: $500 million.

But Odyssey, citing a need to keep looters at bay, isn't saying where it found the wreck, except that it was in international waters in the Atlantic, and claims to be unsure what ship it has found. It has given the wreck the code name Black Swan. But people familiar with the search say the evidence points to the Nuestra Se�ora de las Mercedes.

Odyssey's secrecy has touched off a three-month international legal battle. Spanish officials, convinced that the loot could be Spain's, filed suit in the United States to force disclosure of the wreck's name and location, block future recovery efforts and claim what has already been hauled up.

The Spanish coast guard has effectively barricaded Odyssey's main salvage vessel, the 251-foot Odyssey Explorer, in the port of Britain's overseas territory of Gibraltar, by threatening to seize it if it ventures out.

The fight renews a dispute between archaeologists and commercial salvors over rights to historic wrecks, a quarrel that is growing as new search technology and submersible robots bring to light more graves of ancient ships. It has raised old tensions between Spain on one side and Gibraltar and its mother country, Britain, on the other. And it has pitted a small, Tampa-based U.S. company, which essentially argues that finders are keepers, against Spain, which says it has a right to protect its national heritage.

The next battle over the ship will be fought not on the high seas but under arcane maritime laws in a federal courtroom in Tampa, the city to which Odyssey quietly flew the salvaged treasure before announcing its recovery in May.

In interviews in Gibraltar, Odyssey Explorer crew members described their methodical search for the wreck. First, the company's main survey ship, Ocean Alert, spent weeks at sea towing a sonar device back and forth, at 5 mph, 24 hours a day, producing picture-quality images of the ocean bottom -- a tedious process known as "mowing the lawn."

Company experts on the Odyssey read the digital printouts, identified anomalies on the ocean floor, then returned in the Ocean Explorer with a deep-sea robot called Zeus. Controlled from the surface, Zeus deploys an array of brilliant strobe lights and cameras as it delicately pokes through debris on the bottom. Its operators say the 8.5-ton robot can pick up an egg without breaking it.

Greg Stemm, co-founder of Odyssey, said the company conducts more thorough, archaeologically sensitive excavations of deep-sea sites than any organization in the world. But at the same time, he said, they are in business to find treasure, and the Black Swan was no fluke.

"Shipwrecks are a resource like any other resource, and every other resource -- scientific, cultural or otherwise, whether it's coins, whether it's stamps, whether it's antiques -- it's all owned, bought, sold and traded all the time," Stemm said.

Many archaeologists, citing the United Nations' 2001 convention on protecting underwater heritage, say that shipwreck sites should not be raided for profit. "In this case, you're looking at something which is a bottom-line business, and the guy is seeking to find things with pressure from investors and their own bottom line, so what protocols work for them certainly are not the same for us," said James Delgado, director of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas A&M University. "What's fascinating is seeing Greg Stemm trying to straddle the two worlds."

Given the value of the Black Swan site, Stemm said, "why in the world should we be disclosing where it is, when it's practically impossible to protect it?" Meanwhile, he said, Odyssey wants to return to the wreck to continue analyzing its identity, because for every ship it could be, "there is something that contradicts the evidence."

Spain's attorney in the case, James A. Goold of the Washington firm of Covington & Burling, called that "intentional ignorance."

"Everything points to Odyssey having known exactly what ship they were looking for and having then decided to claim it was unidentified," he said in a telephone interview.

"The law is quite clear that an owner of a ship remains the owner after it sinks, and a sovereign nation has a right to protect its cultural heritage," Goold said. "Spain has cultural heritage laws, and Spain has a program of underwater archaeology, and there are projects Spain undertakes by itself or with archaeological institutes for the public benefit, but not so someone can scoop up gold coins and sell them on eBay."

Odyssey's announcement in May that it had found a huge treasure stunned the Spanish government, which had just completed an agreement allowing the firm to begin work on another wreck found off Gibraltar, believed to be the 80-gun HMS Sussex. The Sussex sank in a severe storm in 1694 in waters that Britain and Gibraltar claim are international but that Spain claims as its own.

Spanish officials initially took the announcement to mean that Odyssey had excavated the Sussex in violation of the agreement, which they immediately canceled. Odyssey countered with a second announcement that the Black Swan was not the Sussex and that it lay in international waters.

"They say it's not the Sussex, but who knows?" said a spokesman for the Spanish Foreign Ministry who commented on condition of anonymity, citing ministry rules. "The information they have given regarding the so-called treasure is not complete, and it's very difficult to be certain where it comes from -- which oceans, what water, international or not, and from which ship," he said. People familiar with the case say that Spain has since concluded that the wreck is the Spanish galleon.

Spanish newspapers accused Gibraltar and Britain of complicity, saying they allowed the U.S. company to spirit away Spanish treasures through the tiny British territory at the entrance to the Mediterranean. Odyssey and the governments of Britain and Gibraltar denied that allegation, saying that Odyssey flew the haul out of the main airport in Gibraltar legally, complying with all customs requirements.

Within days, a Spanish judge launched an investigation and issued search and arrest warrants against Odyssey's two main ships, the recovery vessel Odyssey Explorer and the survey ship Ocean Alert.

On July 12, as the Ocean Alert tried to leave Gibraltar, it was stopped and forcibly boarded by Spanish maritime police just outside the three-mile limit of British-declared waters but inside the 12-mile zone that Spain declares as its territorial waters and that Britain asserts is international. Police took the boat into the nearby Spanish port of Algeciras, where it was searched and stripped of computer hard drives, maps and other items before being released a week later.

The British government sent Spain a strong note of protest, a spokeswoman at the British Embassy in Madrid said. But at the same time, she said, "we pushed Odyssey to be as transparent as possible, as quickly as possible."

The Odyssey Explorer remains docked here, at a cost of more than $20,000 a day, company officials said. "We have nothing to hide," said Aladar Nesser, a former U.S. Navy officer who is now Odyssey's director for international business development. "But we're afraid they'll confiscate everything on it."

Archaeologists, historians and treasure buffs also joined in the hunt for the Black Swan, which took them to the Federal Admiralty Court in Tampa, where filings by Odyssey hint that the firm has found three of the most significant shipwrecks ever.

The papers, in which Odyssey asks to be named "custodian" of the wrecks, do not name any of the ships and give only vague descriptions of their graves, but undersea archaeologists and other experts say there is little doubt what they refer to: the Nuestra Señora de las Mercedes; the Merchant Royal, a 36-gun British navy vessel that sank in 1641 in bad weather off southwestern England with a fortune in silver, gold and jewels; and the SS Ancona, an Italian passenger liner torpedoed by a German U-boat in 1915 off the southeastern coast of Sardinia, taking 12 barrels of gold and a shipment of silver bars with it to the bottom.

Spain has filed to compel Odyssey to disclose the three sites, contending that some of the ships might have been Spanish naval vessels; if they were, they would be covered by sovereign immunity and would still belong to Spain even if lost in international waters. In another legal scenario, the treasures they carried might have belonged to the Spanish government, which could now file claims for them.

Either way, the judge in the case could still award Odyssey a reward for salvaging the vessels, ranging from a pittance to the entire wreck, Texas A&M's Delgado said.

If the court rules that one of the wrecks is the Nuestra Señora de las Mercedes, legal experts say, Spain will certainly claim that it has sovereign immunity and that it lost but never abandoned the ship, a key criterion.

Much of what was recovered was in the form of large, rocklike collections of encrusted coins, weighing an average of 60 pounds apiece and discovered in a "debris field" rather than in a single area that might be the remains of a ship, according to Odyssey's Nesser. That suggests that people aboard the ship might have thrown the cargo overboard to try to prevent a sinking, he said.

Underwater and treasure Web sites, which are brimming with online chats about the Black Swan, have suggested that the absence of a ship indicates that the booty was from the Spanish galleon, which by some accounts disintegrated in a tremendous explosion.

Citing comments by Stemm, some online participants have speculated that the company is preparing to argue that the loot was, in fact, abandoned by people throwing it overboard.

Odyssey remains mum on the location. "We are very, very concerned about protecting that site, and it is irresponsible for people to try to figure out where it is," Stemm said. He compared giving hints about it to dropping clues about the location of someone in a witness protection program.

"It's in the Atlantic," he said. "I'm not going to get into guessing games."

washingtonpost.com

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (30)10/17/2007 12:42:16 PM
From: MJ
   of 61
 
Glenn

OMEX, Odyssey been moving up nicely over past two days.

mj

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To: MJ who wrote (31)10/17/2007 1:02:07 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 61
 
I regularly hear their advertisements (for their Civil War era gold coins) on the radio in the Chicago metropolitan area. They are back in the news today. It was a smart move to recover all of the "Black Swan" booty before making an announcement.

Spanish police release U.S. treasure ship captain

Wed Oct 17, 2007 11:00am EDT

GIBRALTAR, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Spanish police released the captain of a U.S. treasure-hunting vessel on Wednesday after arresting him when he refused to let police board his ship, U.S. crew said.

Spain suspects gold and silver worth an estimated $500 million discovered by a U.S. treasure hunting team in May came from a sunken Spanish galleon and the treasure trove has become the subject of a legal dispute.

Police had arrested captain Sterling Vorus on Tuesday after a Spanish warship intercepted his vessel when it left the British territory of Gibraltar.

The Navy corvette threatened to open fire when Vorus refused to let police board. Police on Wednesday released the captain on bail and ordered him to report to them on the 15th of every month.

Madrid says Odyssey's discovery of the treasure trove might have come from Spanish waters or from a Spanish galleon in international waters, meaning the booty belongs to Spain.

Florida-based Odyssey Marine Exploration says it legally discovered 17 tonnes of silver coins plus gold while working on a wreck code-named 'Black Swan' at a secret location in the Atlantic Ocean.

It says the discovery was made outside of any country's territorial waters.

us.rd.yahoo.com*http://www.reuters.com/legacyArticle?duid=mtfh44001_2007-10-17_15-00-55_l17555925_newsml&rpc=44&type=marketsNews

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