"I questioned him and he said that on the day of the hurricane, his galleon followed by Capitana to the southwest until the night, when the wind carried away their foresail, broke the mainmast and damaged the rudder; and in this state they stayed, seeing occasional lights, until Tuesday the 6th of September, when at daybreak they sounded and found the ship in forty fathoms of water. They then put up a sail to try to get away from the shallows, but the wind also carried this sail away.
Then put up another, which the wind also carried away. The winds and the currents then pushed the galleon into ten fathoms of water, where they anchored, but the cables parted and the ship was wrecked on a shoal of sand, which is on the west of the last cay of Matacumbe, next to the Cabeza de los Martires.
Historic documents are very clear the Margarita, lost in sight of the Atocha, broke up into number of pieces. 17th Century salvagers had difficult due to this fact. Their reports also clearly stated sand covered much of the wreck. In the archival texts researched by the Mel Fisher comapnies we read: Archivo General de Indies (AGI) - Santo Domingo 132 - 10 January 1623 - Letters from the Marquis de Cadereita, Captain General of the 1622 Fleet, here has questioned Bernal de Lugo, Captain of Sea and War for the galleon "Santa Margarita"
"They found the Margarita broken into pieces. Her silver and other treasures mixed in with the ballast and under sand. He says that it had fallen into the quartel and was impossible to recover."
An English translation in 1623 related the disaster, and the breakup of the Margarita:
At 0700 of this same day they saw one league from them to the east, the galleon named Nuestra Senora de Atocha, Almirante of the flota, with all its masts down except the mizzen-mast, and while looking at the galleon they saw it sink with no part of the ship remaining above the water except for the top half of the mizzen mast. At 10.00 hours this same morning the large seas caused his galleon (Santa Margaria) to break up and the greatest part of the people to drown".
"The Almirante (Atocha) sank in nine fathoms of water (54ft.) and the galleon La Margarita in five fathoms (30ft.)
Amelia Research & Recovery, LLC
AGI - Santo Domingo 870 -27 March 1629-Francisco Nunez Melian to King
"so that the keel sticking fast with the gusts overgreat, and the billows extremely raging, the body shivered to pieces, the passengers, when it was apparent they could not escape, saw as little mercy in the sea, as they had in the wind".
British Museum/ "News of the Week of May 1623" London, 1623- (Burney #3)