Not one, but two fabulous treasures disappeared somewhere on rocky, inhospitable, Coco’s Island, 200 miles off the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, in 1819 and 1820.
The first was that of the pirate Benito Bonito, who captured a Spanish ship laden with some 150-tons of gold. After the booty was buried, Bonito killed most of his crew and sailed off with the rest. The British Royal Navy said he was killed soon afterward in a sea battle, but some believe that he alone made it to shore, although he never returned to the island.
Soon afterward, officials in the Spanish colony of Peru gathered the state and church treasures of Lima together to prevent them from falling into the hands of a liberation army. Loaded on board the British ship Mary Dier, the treasure was dispatched to Panama, but the Mary Dier’s captain, Charles Thompson, changed course and sailed to Coco’s. There he and his crew buried the treasure. Unlike Bonito, Captain Thompson did not slaughter his men to safeguard the secret, yet the Mary Dier and all aboard her vanished.
In 1840 Thompson, or someone claiming to be Thompson, appeared in Newfoundland with a map of Coco’s and a feverish desire to raise an expedition to recover the treasure. No one would believe him, and a little later he disappeared. The reputed hoard of Coco’s has never been found despite many searches.
(The Reader’s Digest Association Inc, Mysteries of the Unexplained, p. 118; Jay Robert Nash, Among the Missing, pp. 190-192)