As all of you who regularly visit our website know, the 2017 Florida United Numismatists (FUN) Show was held in Ft. Lauderdale, FL from January 5 – 8, 2017. This year’s Show was rather exciting because we were fortunate to have Jonah Martinez and Bill Bartlett at our table during the several days that the Show was held.
Jonah and Bill were crew members of the Capitana, which was the vessel used to salvage the Tricentennial Hoard recovered in 2015. The term “Tricentennial Hoard” was applied to the coins salvaged on July 30 – 31, 2015. This discovery coincided with the actual 300th Anniversary of the loss of the 1715 Fleet, which occurred on July 30 – 31, 1715. Obviously, this was a remarkable historical coincidence.
Jonah and Bill were kind enough to build a display case (specifically for the FUN Show) and exhibit coins that were part of the hoard found in 2015. In addition, they brought other items that they had recovered from previous years. All in all, it was an incredible display.
I met Jonah and Bill on Wednesday, January 4, 2017, and directed them to our table (# 637) where they set up their exhibit. They also helped me set up my material, which consisted of calendars and other promotional items.
The first official day of the Show was Thursday, January 5, 2017. We had a number of visitors, including Fleet Society Director, Ernie Richards and his wife, Ellie, who drove in from Lake Worth, Florida. John Pullin (Santa Fe, New Mexico) and Dave Crooks (Chicago, Illinois) were frequent visitors throughout the Show. Ray Blakney (Nova Scotia) also stopped by frequently.
Other Fleet Society members who stopped by to say hello, included Sandy and Alan Sadwin (Wantagh, New York), Jorge Proctor (Oakland Park, Florida), Steve and Linda Hodges (Vero Beach, Florida), Augi Garcia (Winter Park, Florida), Tom Uram (Eighty-Four, PA), Buddy Martin (Stuart, Florida) and Jose Busto (San Juan, Puerto Rico). In addition to the fine exhibit created by Jonah and Bill, there was also a magnificent bronze sculpture created by Jonah’s father which depicted Jonah and members of the Capitana crew recovering gold coins as found in July of 2015. This sculpture garnered a lot of attention.
On Friday, January 6, 2017, the second day of the Show, we were pleased to have Brent Brisben and his cousin, Jen visit us. Brent was the owner of Queens Jewells, LLC at the time that the Tricentennial Hoard was recovered. He, along with Jonah and Bill, reminisced over their find and provided additional commentary about their stunning discovery.
On Saturday, January 7, 2017, we still had many people visiting our table and expressing great interest in the artifacts and coins displayed there. We concluded our presentation at the end of the day.
I have included in this report a number of pictures that were taken during the several days that we attended the FUN Show.
Ben Costello, Director