We first met more than 15 years ago when he made a historical presentation to the Jupiter Tequesta Juno Beach Chamber of Commerce on the exploits of Jonathan Dickinson. In an area where the oldest existing structure was built in 1860, Dickinson’s 1696 shipwreck, subsequent capture by Jaega Indians, escape, and return to civilization is particularly significant. Captain Mike Daniel’s attention to detail and relaxed style made a profound impact upon the entire audience.
Subsequent contacts with Mike have revealed a diverse background filled with achievements of historic proportion. From Mike’s South Florida home, Mike has discovered a number of historically significant sites in the Caribbean, Florida, the Bahamas and the Carolinas. Mike and author Robert F. Marx discovered the wreck of Nuestra Senora de las Maravillas in 1972. This treasure laden Spanish galleon sank in the Bahamas in 1656. The gold, silver and emeralds contained in the wreckage are extraordinary in their quality.
More recently, Mike discovered the wreckage of the infamous pirate Blackbeard’s flagship off the coast of North Carolina. Concorde, a French slaveship, was captured by Blackbeard in 1717. After renaming her Queen Anne’s Revenge, Blackbeard made her his flagship. Within less than one year, Queen Anne’s Revenge ran aground, broke up, and sank but not before Blackbeard had successfully blockaded the port of Charleston, SC for nearly a week. More than 275 years later, extensive research enabled Mike to pinpoint the wreckage and recover numerous artifacts.
Throughout his years of historical maritime research and undersea exploration, Mike has maintained a unique focus. The significance of the Golden Age of Piracy has always outweighed any interest in treasure. It is his profound belief that no one ever “owns” treasure. Instead, treasure falls into the custody of “caretakers” for brief periods of time; quite often with painful consequences.
In between his various treasure-hunting exploits, Mike has worked extensively in the television and film industry. Most recently, he created and served as the first curator of the Burt Reynolds Museum in Jupiter, FL. Mike and his wife, Nancy, also owned and operated a successful marine parts business known as Sea Chest for more than 30 years.
You can follow Captain Mike Daniel’s exploits on Facebook.