The Fernandina Beach Rotary Club recently welcomed Ed Garvon and Billy Taylor of Amelia Research and Recovery (A.R.R.) as guest speakers. Garvon spoke about A.R.R.’s ongoing search for the wreck of the Spanish galleon the San Miguel off the south end of Amelia Island. He said A.R.R. contracted with renowned colonial Spanish maritime historian Dr. Gene Lyon to conduct research in Spain on artifacts recovered from the waters off the island. Dr. Lyon’s findings strongly indicated the wreck was that of the San Miguel, which was one of several Spanish treasure ships to sink off the coast of Florida during a hurricane in 1715. Using a magnetometer and other state-of-the-art equipment, A.R.R. has identified some 519 targets in 30-plus feet of water between Amelia Island and Big Talbot Island. The company’s recovery ship, fitted with an 8,000 pound blower to remove sand, will arrive in Fernandina by mid-December and excavation of the site should begin soon after. A.R.R. has a contract with the state of Florida for research and recovery of the San Miguel with 20 percent of anything found going to the state. According to Garvon, the ship’s manifest listed its cargo as uncut South American emeralds as well as Oriental jewelry and other high-value items – a treasure that could be worth more than $10 billion today.