Treasure from Spanish shipwreck revealed

Spanish cultural officials

allowed a first peek Nov. 30 at some of the 16 tons (14.5 metric tons)

of shipwreck treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S.

salvage company gave up this year after a five-year ownership dispute.

A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a gold tobacco box from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a gold tobacco box from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a gold tobacco box from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry places silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry places silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry places silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
The detailed narrow side of a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
The detailed narrow side of a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
The detailed narrow side of a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, is seen on its first display to the media at a Ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A worker of the ministry holds up for photographers a silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A silver coin from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A a block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A a block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A a block of encrusted silver coins from the shipwreck of a 1804 galleon, on its first display to the media at a ministry building, in Madrid, Friday, Nov. 30, 2012. Spanish cultural officials have allowed the first peep at 16 tons (14.5 metric tons) of the shipwreck, 'Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes' a treasure worth an estimated $500 million that a U.S. salvage company gave up after a five-year international ownership dispute. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays some of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays some of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays some of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew works with one of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew works with one of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew works with one of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays two of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays two of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
In this undated photo made available by the Spain's Culture Ministry, a member of the Ministry technical crew displays two of the 594,000 coins and other artifacts found in the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in the Atlantic while sailing back from South America in 1804, in a warehouse in Tampa, Fla. A 17-ton trove of silver coins recovered from the Spanish galleon was set to be flown Friday Feb. 24, 2012 from the United States to Spain, concluding a nearly five-year legal struggle with Odyssey Marine Exploration, the Florida deep-sea explorers who found and recovered it. (AP Photo/Spain's Culture Ministry, HO)
A Spanish flag is waved from a plane carrying some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle, after its arrival at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid, on Saturday Feb. 25, 2012. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007.(AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A Spanish flag is waved from a plane carrying some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle, after its arrival at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid, on Saturday Feb. 25, 2012. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007.(AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A Spanish flag is waved from a plane carrying some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle, after its arrival at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid, on Saturday Feb. 25, 2012. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007.(AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
In this photo taken Feb. 25, 2012, some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle are downloaded from a military plane and carried to a warehouse after the planes carrying the treasure landed at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
In this photo taken Feb. 25, 2012, some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle are downloaded from a military plane and carried to a warehouse after the planes carrying the treasure landed at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
In this photo taken Feb. 25, 2012, some of the 17 tons of silver and gold coins scooped up from a Spanish warship, Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, that sank during a 1804 gunbattle are downloaded from a military plane and carried to a warehouse after the planes carrying the treasure landed at the Torrejon De Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid. Two Spanish military C-130 transport planes landed out from Tampa's MacDill Air Force Base with the 594,000 coins and other artifacts retrieved after a five-year legal wrangle with Odyssey Marine Exploration company who had found the shipwreck off the Portuguese coast and flew the treasure back to the U.S. via Gibraltar in May 2007. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)

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