The last shipment of rare liquors for Tzar Nicholas II’s Russia, is now recovered!
A search and salvage
project that started 20 years ago is now completed. It was on the 22nd October
the salvage vessel ”Deepsea Worker”, arrived in Sweden with a shipload
of more than 100-year old cognac and liqueur, brought up from the Swedish
steamer ”s/s Kyros”!
Ocean X Team and
iXplorer cooperated with the special equipped salvage vessel ”Deepsea
Worker” to be able to salvage the
bottles of ”De Haartman & Co”-cognac and
”Benedictine”-liqueur (now days owned by Bacardi) from 77 meters depth
between Sweden and Finland at international waters. It was 50 cases of cognac
and 15 cases of liqueur that were supposed to be delivered from France to St
Petersburg (former Petrograd), Russia, through neutral Sweden already in
December 1916. Due to a heavy ice situation in the Sea of Bothnia (the sea
between Sweden and Finland) the transport were delayed till May 1917. ”s/s
Kyros” met its dramatic fate though when being stopped and controlled by
the German submarine ”UC58”. The captain of the submarine decided to
sink ”s/s Kyros” because that parts of the cargo were considered as
contraband by the Germans. ”S/s Kyros” crew were transferred to a nearby
ship and later they all returned safe to Sweden.
The wreck of ”s/s Kyros” has during the years been heavily damaged by fishing trawls and trawl boards. Several times since the first discovery back in 1999 has the wreck been cleared from nets to make it possible for divers and unmanned underwater vehicles (ROV’s) to access the wreck.
The importance of this event cannot be overemphasized – it’s not only a find of rare cognac and liqueur but also a part of history of the former imperial Russia.
”Bacardi, being the owner of the Bénédictine brand, a product that was created more than 500 years ago by french monks, are excited to hear about the find and are eager to learn if the product has been preserved for the duration of the stay under water, says Petra Caspolin, Marketing Manager at Bacardi in Nordics”
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