This is the version 1 bar. Version 1 does not include the date the ship sank on the bar, and version two does include it. Version 1 bars are no longer being made and once they run out we will not be getting more from the supplier.
The S.S. Gairsoppa was a steel hulled British steam merchant ship that was built and launched in 1919. After a long civilian career under the service of the British India Steam Navigation Company, Ltd., of London, she was enlisted by the United Kingdom during World War II as a cargo ship that carried military supplies for the British War Effort.
It was on one such voyage, beginning in December, 1940, where she was loaded full of silver ingots, pig iron, and tea sailing from Calcutta, India to Britain. The Gairsoppa sailed the Indian Ocean around the Cape in South Africa to the South Atlantic where she met up with a fleet of other merchant ships at the port of Freetown in Sierra Leone. From there she would sail with the fleet back to Galway, Ireland where the cargo would be offloaded.
After leaving Sierra Leone, the fleet battled high winds and heavy surf in the dangerous waters of the Atlantic. The Gairsoppa ran low on coal and had to separate from the rest of the fleet to make a more direct route to her port of call for refueling. She never made it.
On February 17, 1941, the S.S. Gairsoppa was spotted by an enemy German Focke-Wulf aircraft and was subsequently torpedoed by a German U-Boat and sank killing all but two of her crew. For nearly 70 years the Gairsoppa's location would be lost three miles deep at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean somewhere off the coast of Ireland.
After a couple of unsuccessful tries at finding a salvage crew to locate the Gairsoppa, in 2010 the British government entered an agreement with Florida-based Odyssey Marine Exploration to find and recover the nearly 7,000,000 ounces of silver ingots lost with the Gairsoppa. On September 26, 2011, the salvage crew found the shipwreck and began recovering silver. To date the salvage crew has recovered nearly 110 tons of silver from the wreck.
These 10 troy ounce bars of silver are part of the result of that recovery. They are certified to be 99.9% pure and are minted by Sunshine Minting, Inc, (SMI) of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho from silver that sat at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean (nearly 3 miles below the surface) aboard the ill-fated S.S. Gairsoppa some 300 miles Southwest of the Southern tip of Ireland.
This is your opportunity to own a real piece of history from World War II, and REAL sunken treasure! Each one of these 10oz. silver bars comes with a certificate of authenticity from the co-founder of Odyssey Marine Explorations, Inc., Mr. Greg Stemm, certifying that the accompanying bar of silver is actual silver recovered from this shipwreck off the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean!