Sunken ship from 1765 found off Argentina's coast

BUENOS AIRES (AFP) - A team of archaeologists in Argentina has pinpointed the location of the 1765 shipwreck of a Spanish merchant ship off the southern coast, officials said on Saturday.

It is the oldest wrecked ship of 12 that were identified along 200km of the windswept Tierra del Fuego coast.

The ship, "La Purisima Concepcion", went down on Jan 10, 1765, off the Mitre peninsula - about 3,500km south of Buenos Aires - as it headed for the turbulent Cape Horn after sailing from Cadiz and stopping in Montevideo.

"It is not a galleon loaded with gold and pearls like in the movies; it's just a supply ship. But we have chosen not to disclose the exact location so as not to encourage anyone to go souvenir hunting," said Mr Martin Vazquez, the lead archaeologist on the team that found the ship.

He previously led Ushuaia's End of the World Museum. It sponsored several expeditions since 2009 searching for these lost vessels, an an area where extreme winds and snow are the order of the day most of the year.

Many of the 193 people on board the ship that wrecked survived and were able to build small boats with which they ultimately headed to Buenos Aires.

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