Key West Maritime Historical Society Collection of Marine Paintings
NUESTRA SEÑORA de ATOCHA
Built in Cuba in 1620, ATOCHA was one of 28 Galleons to set sail from Havana on Sept. 4, 1622 loaded with a vast treasure of gold and silver. Also on board were 265 people. Many had made their fortunes in the New World and were returning to Spain with their own treasures of jewels, gold, and silver. High ranking Clergy, Noblemen, Soldiers of Fortune, Servants, and slaves were crowded into the ship. ATOCHA was the 747 of her day and one can imagine the excitement and expectations of going home.
24 hours later, a powerful Hurricane hit the fleet and wrecked 8 of the galleons on the Florida Keys. ATOCHA hit the reef off the Marqueses Keys, broke apart, and sank scattering her contents over the ocean floor. There were 5 survivors that were picked up the next day by a passing boat.
In the 1970’s and 80’s, treasure hunter Mel Fisher and Treasure Salvers found the wreck and much of the treasure and artifacts many of which can be seen on display at the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum.
Fine-art giclee print is available - email the artist for pricing.