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Treasure Ship Mystery May Soon Be Solved

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Lords Of Fortune

Capt. Martin Bayerle with RMS Republic's Anchor

Capt. Martin Bayerle with RMS Republic's Anchor

RMS Republic, "The Millionaires' Ship"

RMS Republic, "The Millionaires' Ship"

For Lords Of Fortune LLC, the largest treasure ever lost at sea is the prize.

We’ve confirmed a US Navy shipment of $800,000, today's value $200 million. If we add a likely $25 million Russian State Bank shipment in double eagles, 45 tons, our recovery will exceed $5 billion.”
— Captain Martin Bayerle
MIAMI BEACH, FL, UNITED STATES, January 21, 2019 / -- 110 years ago on this date, at 3 pm ET, the RMS Republic, pride of the White Star Line, opulent in her appointments, “palatial” in her description, famed as “the millionaires’ ship,” departed her White Star Line, Pier 48, at the foot of W. 11th Street, Bank Street, New York City – just a few blocks from the largest gold repository in the United States, the New York Sub Treasury. Once she entered the lower harbor, she encountered a dense fog. As was practice at that time, she continued in the outbound Ambrose to Nantucket Light traffic lane at her normal rated speed of 18 knots. She was, after all, the only ship to leave New York for Europe on that day, and she was in her appropriate outbound traffic lane and perfectly safe. She had cargos, mail and passengers to deliver on time. Two days later, on January 24th, 1909, at 8:40 pm ET, the largest passenger liner to have ever been lost at sea to that date, an “unsinkable ship,” the Royal Mail Ship (RMS) Republic sank beneath the waves in shark infested waters fifty nautical miles south of Nantucket Island, Massachusetts. In her wake, a mystery of fabulous treasure sprang into existence. As one treasure book put it, she carried “Riches beyond most men's wildest dreams” to the bottom of the Atlantic.

Preparations are now underway by Miami resident and treasure hunter, Capt. Martin Bayerle, head of Lords Of Fortune, to raise the ill-fated RMS Republic’s treasure from its watery grave. The RMS Republic may hold the vastest treasures ever lost at sea.

Many treasure books had reported on Republic’s treasure, but not one provided any detail. Why was there no official Board of Trade inquiry into her loss? Why can’t plans or a manifest of the vessel be found? Why is this huge vessel not on any official chart? Why was RMS Republic carrying this great wealth? Whose money was it? Why all the mystery?

Captain Martin Bayerle found the ship in 1981 and has devoted the past 40 years to solving the mystery. “I found the ship with about two years of preparatory research into her location. We found the ship in two and a half days of physical search. I had found the illusive ship. But at the time, I didn’t recognize the greater difficulty would be in proving her cargoes. That would be the more difficult challenge.” Capt. Bayerle said.

Over the decades, Bayerle has been in legal battles with competing salvors and banks. Even the US Government had filed a claim in his admiralty action in the US District Court, District of Massachusetts, stating “based on Mr. Bayerle’s good faith research,” that they owned “all” of Republic’s gold.

“Aside from proving the cargoes, the next greatest challenge were the legal battles,” Bayerle said. “It took us years to defeat competing salvors, and almost a decade to defeat the US Government. After 30 years of litigation, we were literally the last man standing before the Court. The Court recognized our efforts. We are now, finally, the legal owners of RMS Republic and all of her cargoes.”

Why all the difficulty? Why all the mystery? Bayerle’s work had been discussed recently in History Channel’s 2016 nine episode series Billion Dollar Wreck, and his more detailed research is contained within his 2013 book, The Tsar’s Treasure. In brief, Russia was securing financing from her allies to support the Tsarist regime and thereby thwart German expansionism in order to maintain the balance of power in the pre-WWI political environment. “The acknowledgement of the loss of this amount of Tsarist gold would have caused the immediate financial - followed shortly thereafter by the political - collapse of the Tsarist regime, an allied sovereign power. That acknowledgement would have destabilized Europe and would have possibly thrown the world into war years before 1914 when WWI actually began. One could effectively argue the loss of this gold did, ultimately, precipitate the fall of the Tsarist government,” Bayerle said.

RMS Republic is directly linked to the more famous White Star Liner Titanic in several respects; the lack of a public inquiry for Republic in 1909 (to conceal the loss of her Tsarist gold cargo) failed to address all the issues which impacted Titanic just three short years later: why did this "unsinkable ship" sink, ship hull construction and materials, bulkhead construction, use of wireless, sufficient lifeboats, speed under adverse conditions, others, all the issues which impacted Titanic were never addressed in time to prevent that disaster. Titanic was, consequently, collateral damage.

Why now, 2019? “After our 2016 History Channel series Billion Dollar Wreck aired, research has continued. We have since unequivocally confirmed one cargo, the US Navy's 1909 payroll and operational expense shipment of $800,000, today's value very conservatively $200,000,000. And, our original Russian State Bank shipment has since been increased from the original $3 million in US double-eagle gold coins (which gave our History Channel show its title Billion Dollar Wreck), to now $25,000,000. That is 45 tons of newly minted double gold eagles coins packed in 625 160-pound wooden boxes (gross weight), today easily $5 billion. That valuation too ignores ALL the personal effects of her millionaire passengers, left in their individual state rooms.” Bayerle said. “The old show’s valuation was too low,” he said with a wry smile. “Our new show, now in discussion, is tentatively entitled The Tsar’s Treasure. The Five Billion Dollar Shipwreck. “Every show we will find real treasure. After all, this is an historically significant palatial White Star liner called, at the time, "The Millionaires' Ship"!

The adventure begins this summer, 2019.

For more information, press only:
Martin Bayerle
(772) 494-6900, (305) 766-5128 (cell)
For more information on Product:
The history of RMS Republic’s fabled treasure:
Legal Issues, the US Government’s Claim and our ownership:
Additional Historical Photos (click through to highest resolution):
Capt. Bayerle’s book The Tsar’ s Treasure: (also in Kindle version)

Martin Bayerle
Lords Of Fortune LLC
+1 305-771-0017
email us here
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We were delayed a year. Summer 2019!