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The true story of the HMS De Braak might have been borrowed from the pages of a Robert Louis Stevenson novel, for it is a classic account of shipwrecks, treasure maps, Weather Witches and mystics, hunters and mountebanks. Author Donald Shomette recounts an amazing tale of intrepid deep-sea adventure and the all-consuming lust for gold. The Hunt for HMS De Braak: Legend and Legacy uncovers the facts surrounding the famous vessel and the many legends she spawned.
The history of De Braak, told so ably by Donald Shomette, is really two stories - first, the story of the ship's brief and rather undistinguished military career in the Dutch and British Navies; and second, the tale of her shipwreck and alleged treasure.
The author weaves the two facets of De Braak's history into a readable and scholarly whole. The second part of the book is a startling record of legend, misinformation, outright lies, bungling, and greed.
Sailors, watermen, adventurers, criminals, salvors, bureaucrats, and even politicians walk in and out of the pages of De Braak's history with astonishing frequency.
Few shipwrecks in American waters have generated the interest that followed in De Braak's wake. "Interest" is probably the wrong term; "seduction" perhaps better describes the effect that De Braak's legend exerted on individuals who continually searched Delaware Bay for her resting place.
In the end, De Braak was found. Her mythical treasure was not. Shomette has sought to present, for the first time, a detailed account of the De Braak legend. He does not, however, merely retell the tale of a small man-of-war's life and death. He goes beyond that to give us an account of her legacy. This legacy is a modern one, born out of her dramatic and ill-conceived salvage.
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Book Description Carolina Academic Pr, 1993. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0890895139