The Atocha Star Emerald

In creating an Old World Treasure, Ron wanted to feature a centerpiece from the Old World. The "Atocha Star" Emerald included in the eagle came from the shipwreck, The Atocha. On September 6, 1622 The Atocha, along with a large Spanish treasure fleet bound for Spain, encountered a severe hurricane and was driven onto the reefs near the Dry Tortugas just west of Key West Florida. All except for 5 people aboard perished.

The Atocha Star was found in 1985 by the Mel Fisher Group from Key West, Florida. The emerald itself is estimated to be worth between $3.2 and $5 million and is a rare artifact left over from the golden age of the pirates. This 400 year old emerald, weighs 12.73 carats.  Before being cut The Atocha Star weighed more than 25 carats, the largest cut emerald from The Atocha.

As a major corporate sponsor the contribution from The Mel Fisher Group has helped Ron Shore and The World's Greatest Treasure Hunt™ to create a truly unique treasure. When he first spoke to Sean Fisher, grandson to Mel, he was immediately excited about The World's Greatest Treasure Hunt™ project and wanted to help.

To learn more about The Atocha and the magnificent history surrounding the Atocha emerald, visit Mel Fisher's website melfisher.org . To find out how you can help recover more treasure and dive on The Atocha shipwreck or to buy pieces already recovered visit www.melfisher.com.

Unfortunately, a typical gemologist is qualified to identify a gem but is not qualified to interpret its historic value particularly one from such an historic discovery and one coming from the private collection of the Fisher family.


Deo’s Emerald, "The Atocha Star"

Letter from Sean Fisher:


Deo Fisher was the backbone of the Worlds greatest and most famous treasure hunting outfit, Mel Fisher’s Treasures.  From the earliest days of his treasure hunting, Mel Fisher looked to his wife Deo for stability and support.  When the rest of the world called him a dreamer and said he would never find the legendary shipwreck of the Atocha, his wife Deo was there to encourage him and his family to press on.  Press on they did and that dreamer realized his dream in 1985 when he discovered the largest treasure find in history.

 One year later, only a few hundred feet from the main pile of The Atocha, Mel and his crew discovered what would be Deo’s favorite surprise to ever come from the wreck, Emerald City.  It is called Emerald City because of the incredible yield of emeralds discovered on this site.  Over six and a half pounds of emeralds, 13,500 carats, have been discovered there.  Deo loved all treasure, but had a special place in her heart for these emeralds. 

 The Atocha Star was given that name due to its unusual combination of size, color and quality.  She is a grade 1AA, the highest quality of all Atocha Emeralds, and her Carat weight was 25.87 cts. before being cut.  Mel hand picked this emerald especially for Deo as he knew that she would hold it dear.

 It was always the policy that Atocha emeralds would not be cut.  They are found rough and history is told by leaving the artifact in the condition that it was found.  However, Deo wanted her emerald to be special, well, more special.  She wanted it to stand apart from all other Atocha emeralds.  In 1992 Deo decided to have the Atocha Star cut to show off its true brilliance.  The finished product was even more beautiful than even Deo had imagined. 

 Mel Fisher passed away in 1998 from cancer.  Ten years later Deo contracted the same disease.  One of her final wishes was that the Atocha Star, the Emerald that Mel had hand picked for her, be used to advance cancer research.  She wanted the beautiful gift that her husband had given her years ago, to help fight the disease that ended both of their lives.

Signed,

Sean Fisher, (grandson of Mel Fisher)

Key West, Florida


The Chapters: 12 Lost Treasures

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