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Maritime Treasure Hunt

Maritime Treasure Hunt Adventure Talk: The Sunken Gold


Wednesday October 11, 2017
7:00 PM
After explosions from German mines rattled the ship, the battered HMS Laurentic and its haul—44 tons of gold bullion meant to finance the Great War—sank to the ocean floor. The Sunken Gold: A Story of World War I Espionage and the Greatest Treasure Salvage in History by Joseph A. Williams presents this century old retrieval mission. Join us for a talk with the book’s author about this fantastic adventure!

Cinematic in scope, The Sunken Gold takes readers from the haunting coastline of Lough Swilly to the depths of the ocean to the great war halls of London. Here, the sea lords of the British Navy asked Lieutenant Commander Guybon Damant to recover the 3,211 bars of gold lost in the ruined hull of the Laurentic As the unpredictable weather off the coast of Ireland drew the salvage into a multiyear struggle, Damant was called off to lead a covert diving team.

The crew gathered crucial intelligence from sunken U-boats, searching for ciphers, minefield schematics and other secret documents that would aid the Allies in defeating German submarines. Years later, Damant returned to his long-deferred mission, steadfastly collecting 99 percent of the treasure thought lost to the sea.

Bio:

Joseph A. Williams is a librarian, archivist, and historian holding master's degrees in History and Library and Information Science from Queens College. He worked as the Head of Collections and Assistant Director of the State University of New York Maritime College's Stephen B. Luce Library which specializes in nautical research. Currently, he is the Deputy Director of Greenwich Library (CT). Joseph has published widely in the fields of maritime history and librarianship and is the author of Seventeen Fathoms Deep: The Saga of the Submarine S-4 Disaster. He lives in Connecticut.

This program is funded by the Friends of the Library.


 


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