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Offline salvor6Topic starter
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« on: July 24, 2009, 09:51:46 am »
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Cannons and china - treasure hunting in Indonesia
By Christiane Oelrich
Jul 23, 2009, 3:08 GMT

   Jakarta - In the lore surrounding hidden treasures, the gods often see fit to subject the treasure hunter to a long quest before he finds the objects of his desire.

   Treasure hunter Klaus Keppler knows that only too well. For years, the owner of a salvage company has been looking for the wrecks of ships that had been carrying gold, silver or china. Now, after a long dry spell, he got lucky. Twice.

   Keppler - who has recovered a 10th-century wreck and the Forbes, a British vessel that ran aground in 1806, off Indonesia - contentedly surveys his treasures in a Jakarta port storehouse, holding up a huge lump of silver coins.

   'Hurry up, this thing is incredibly heavy,' the 70-year-old German urges a photographer but with a big smile on his face.

   The divers of his salvage ship, the Maruta Jaya, have recovered many kilograms of silver coins from the Forbes as well as cannon, gold jewellery, crystal, silverware and 400 bottles of wine.

   'Those gentlemen on board knew how to live well,' he says.

   Especially the many different coins will sell well, he believes, spinning a large one between his fingers: 'One coin can be worth between 50 dollars and several thousand.'

   This is even more so the case if the history of the artefact is known. Keppler hired a young man to scour archives around the world for information about the Forbes.

   The vessel sailed the seas under a commission from the British king, a kind of pirate with a royal permit. It ran aground on a reef off Belitung island, between Borneo and Sumatra, en route to India on September 9, 1806.

   Captain Frazer Sinclair and his crew survived. The Mampango reef was only charted five years later.

   Upstairs in Keppler's storehouse, four archaeology students measure, photograph and describe every recovered coin and enter the results in a databank.

   'Everything gets documented,' Keppler says. Officials from various Indonesian ministries who must accompany every search trip make sure that no treasures are squirreled away.

   The Indonesian state receives 50 per cent of all revenues derived from the treasure hunts in its territory. While it is rumoured among treasure hunters that some officials are not adverse to cutting individual deals, the searchers also eye each other with mistrust.

    Hey Cornelius, I'm sure you can relate to this article. How is it going with your shipwreck in Indonesia? Have you found a salvage company yet?

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Offline Cornelius
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« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2009, 01:08:25 pm »
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Salvor . Yes Indonesia is my back-yard . There are three famous wrecks in the Banka Strait . Too bad that these wrecks were copied by  Tony Wells and offered to Christian as possible salvage sites . Anything to make a buck I would say .  There is a difference between the Bangka Strait  ( the Strait between the island of Banka  and the island of Sumatra  )  and the area East of Belitung Island  . These ialands are close together but since the rivers from Sumatra flow into Bangka Strait the water is quite muddy . While the seas around Belitung Island are cristal clear . That is the reason that many divers are working in the Belitung area  while the better wrecks are in Banka Strait . It takes more investment to go after the Banka wrecks than it will take in the Belitung area  . There are plenty wrecks in the Belitung area since this was the route between China and the main island of Indonesia  ( Java ) . I hope to be able to go after the Banka wrecks some day .  There are over 400 known wrecks in Indonesia  ( not counting the old Chinese wrecks with a lot of porcelain on board ) . In comparison it is better to dive nowadays in Indonesia then it is to dive in Florida .    Cornelius

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Offline aquanut
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« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2009, 04:36:37 pm »
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Heck, Cornelius,
Why bother with Florida then. If I had your knowledge and the funds to travel I'd be in Indonesia and not waste my time on the Florida wrecks!
Aquanut

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Offline Cornelius
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« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2009, 05:20:56 pm »
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Aquanut . Research is a hobby of mine . Wether that is in Florida or Indonesia makes no difference to me .  A galleon is a galleon to me . The story behind the ship is mostly very interesting . As I stated many times before  , I am not in it for the money ( my wreck in Cedar Keys  will make that clear ! ) . Between the States and Indonesia I spent 40 years . Aquanut , you said the right words  ,, if I had the funds  ,, .  Do you know how much money it will take to do a good salvage project in Indonesia  ?  I am now investigating  three possibilities  . 1)  wrecks at the Jupiter inlet . 2)  the Anna Catharina  at Zeeland in Holland  3) a possible wreck at the Outskerries  / near a reef at Heilinabretta , Fetlar . This is a VOC ship . Beside this THunters net ,  I am corresponding with a lot of divers and salvagers . I only have so much time , so don't feel left out when I do not answer you right away . Regards  Cornelius

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« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2010, 10:25:06 am »
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i from bangka...
i love my island  Kiss  Kiss
i ask guidance from senior and ready to cooperate  Smiley

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