The 64-pound California Gold Rush Kellogg & Humbert assayer’s ingot will be among the recovered S.S. Central America sunken treasure in the $15 million Ship of Gold exhibit at the Long Beach Expo, June 22 – 24, 2023. (Photo credit: Donn Pearlman.)

The world’s most valuable jeans, the California Gold Rush miner’s work pants recovered from the 1857 sinking of the S.S. Central America, will be displayed in the Ship of Gold exhibit at the June 2023 Long Beach Expo. (Photo credit: Holabird Western Ameri

The first port-of-call for a touring, $15 million Ship of Gold exhibit of recovered California Gold Rush sunken treasures will be the Long Beach, California Expo, June 22 – 24, 2023. (Photo credit: Donn Pearlman.)

$15 million display in Long Beach, CA includes recovered gold coins, ingots, and other historic artifacts from the 1857 sinking of the fabled “Ship of Gold.”

Many of the Gold Rush-era artifacts in the display have not previously been publicly exhibited.”

— Adam Crum

LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA, USA, June 19, 2023/ — To mark the 35th anniversary of the historic 1988 discovery of “the greatest treasure ever found,” a $15 million Ship of Gold sunken treasure exhibit will begin a nationwide educational tour with its first port-of-call at the Long Beach Expo ( collectibles show in Long Beach, California, June 22–24, 2023.

The display of recovered California Gold Rush treasures from the 1857 sinking of the fabled S.S. Central America will feature gold coins, assayer’s ingots, gold nuggets, and gold dust.

There will also be a treasure shipment box, items from the ship such as tableware, bottles, an engine room steam gauge, and the bell believed rung to announce meal service. Visitors can also see an important green glass bottle that was the first artifact from the ship retrieved from the ocean floor in 1988. It directly led to the exciting discovery of gold dust that was subsequently found in the sediment brought up with the bottle using a seven-ton remote-controlled submersible nicknamed “Nemo.”

Recovered passengers’ artifacts in the exhibit include ticket receipts, jewelry, an elegant man’s smoking jacket, 166-year-old Cuban cigars, and the world’s most valuable jeans – gold prospector’s heavy-duty work pants that sold at auction for $114,000 this past December.
“Many of the Gold Rush-era artifacts in the display have not previously been publicly exhibited,” said Adam Crum, president of Finest Known ( in Torrance, California.

The Ship of Gold touring exhibit is being organized by Finest Known, Argos Gold Group, and National Treasures I, LLC. The exhibit will be housed in a 40-foot-long recreation of the famous ship’s hull.

“The centerpiece and highlight of the exhibit will be a mammoth assayer’s ingot nicknamed the Eureka Bar which is considered by many to be a priceless national treasure. It is the single largest gold artifact in existence from the California Gold Rush and the most famous and desirable artifact from what Life magazine called ‘The Greatest Treasure Ever Found,’ and not seen in public for more than a decade,” he said.

“The Eureka Bar weighs 933.94 Troy ounces, a little over 64 pounds. The ingot’s value in 1857 was stamped by San Francisco assayers Kellogg & Humbert as $17,433.57, but today it’s insured for $10 million,” explained Crum.

“The S.S. Central America was a 280-foot long, three-masted side-wheel steamship carrying tons of California Gold Rush treasures from Panama to New York City that sank in the Atlantic Ocean 150 miles off the North Carolina coast during a hurricane on September 12, 1857. It was discovered about 7,200 feet below the ocean’s surface in 1988 by a scientific expedition using a six-ton remote-controlled submersible vehicle,” explained Bob Evans, the chief scientist and historian on the recovery missions.

“The tragedy of the S.S. Central America sinking took the lives of 425 of the ship’s 578 passengers and crewmembers, and the loss of the gold cargo was a major factor in the economically devastating financial Panic of 1857 in the United States,” said Evans who will be at the Long Beach Expo to meet with visitors and answer questions about the S.S. Central America.

The exhibit also includes a prospector’s recovered saddle bag that contained gold coins, nuggets, and gold dust. Visitors can see the only known complete treasure shipment box from the 1850s California Gold Rush period. An embossed wax seal on the box is still easily readable as “Alsop & Co.,” renowned merchants and gold treasure shippers of the era.

Other sunken treasure artifacts in the exhibit include a gold pocket watch cover with intricately engraved scenes of early San Francisco, a Madonna with child figurine, and a rare medal presented by the Order of Saint Maurice and Saint Lazarus, the world’s second oldest order of knighthood, recovered from the sunken ship’s seabed debris field.

The record-setting miner’s pants and cigars in the display were discovered in the submerged trunk of first-class passenger John Dement of Oregon, a merchant and military veteran. The ship stopped in Havana, Cuba on its ill-fated voyage from Aspinwall (now Colón), Panama to New York where Dement presumably obtained cigars.

The display will also have items found in the trunk of first-class San Francisco “royalty” passengers, Ansel and Adeline Easton, who were on their honeymoon trip to New York. His ornately embroidered, fashionable smoking jacket is one of those items in the exhibition.

“After the steamship was overwhelmed and crippled by a hurricane, the captain, Commander William Lewis Herndon, ordered the lifeboats to be launched and the women and children, including Adeline, evacuated to a ship passing nearby. Ansel clung to debris in the water for hours after the ship sank until the crew from another vessel rescued him. Captain Herndon went down with the ship,” said Evans.

The Eastons were reunited eight days later when the rescue ships reached port at Norfolk, Virginia.

“We are delighted to present these historic California Gold Rush sunken treasure artifacts for people to see in person,” stated Crum. “After this debut exhibition, we will be announcing future locations and dates in the United States and other countries for a Treasures From The Deep touring display,” he said.

For additional information about the treasure from the S.S. Central America, visit

The June 22-24, 2023 Long Beach Expo will be held in Hall C of the Long Beach Convention Center at 300 E. Ocean Blvd. in Long Beach, California. For additional information, visit

Adam Crum
Finest Known
+1 888-900-9948