RMS DOURO SHIPWRECK, 1853 GOLD SOVEREIGN ‘SHIELD TYPE’
A Gold Victoria 1853 shield type sovereign coin from the famous RMS Douro shipwreck, enclosed in an original red leatherette box with royal crest and gold block lettering, (ROYAL MAIL STEAM PACKET COMP).
With the official RMS Douro certificate signed by Sverker Hallstrom with a picture of this coin.
On the 31st March 1882, RMS Douro ( an iron-hulled steamship) bound from Buenos Aires to Southampton with stops at Brazil and Lisbon the capital of Portugal was running 90 minutes behind schedule when she departed Lisbon bound for Southampton on the final leg of the voyage. In order to make up time, she proceeded at full speed northward off the Portuguese and Spanish coasts.
On the evening of 1 April, Douro passed Spains Cape Finisterre under a full moon. Her fourth officer noticed the Spanish steam boat Yrurac Bat about 2.3 miles away but assumed that the officer off the bridge had also spotted her and did not pass word of the sighting to him. The officer on the bridge only sighted Yrurac Bat later, when it was too late to avoid a collision, and at 22:45 hours on 1st April Yrurac Bat rammed the Douro.
Yrurac Bat′s bow cut two deep gashes in Douro′s starboard side. The passengers and crew of Douro abandoned ship in a great hurry, and Douro sank 30 minutes after the collision in 1,500 feet of water. There were six fatalities including her captain and five other officers who all went down with the ship. The other 32 members of her crew and all 112 of her passengers survived. Yrurac Bat sank soon after Douro with the loss of another 53 lives. The survivors were rescued soon after the disaster by the British steamer Hidalgo which took them all to A coruna Spain.