There is a legend of a lost galleon refered to as the Pearl Ship that was first reported in the sand hills west of El Centro, California. Its description was close to the size of one of Columbus's small Caravels. 15th century records from New Spain (Mexico) indicate that the De La Cadena family had in a pearl diving monopoly in Baja California.
The remains of the Pearl Ship is rumored to have been seen as recently as the 1970s. The story goes that in 1615 Spanish explorer Juan De Iturbe sailed a shallow-drafted caravel up the Gulf of California, and a high tidal bore carried him across a strait into Lake Cahuilla, which was in the process of drying up. Unable to sail out again, Iturbe beached his craft and made his way back to the nearest Spanish settlement leaving a fortune in black pearls behind. Was there any truth to such a story?
This ship has been seen and lost several times and there are several stories about this ship having been looted. It has been claimed a mule driver of the de Anza expedition was said to have removed the pearls in 1774.
Another claim dating around that in 1917 an El Centro farmer named Jacobsen was said to have found a very small chest of jewels that he quietly sold in Los Angeles and that he used timber from the pearl ship to build his pig pens.
Stories of Lost ships in the sand dunes or desert are quite common with oral history with very little evidence in not just in the American south west but also there are simular stories in Australia and New Zealand of such mystery vessels in the sands
Are these stories just a myth created by the desire of society who loves to be taunted by such mysterys?
But Perhaps beyond all the folklore there is a possible treasure ship buried out there some to taunt us.
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