Good treasure stories?


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I love old stories about gold mining. Many of them are probably complete lies, some have alittle truth in them and perhaps a few are based on fact.

I thought perhaps some of you would like to share tales you have heard over the years. (I'm thinking here of whats4dinner's stories, mostly based on direct experience, but there are many of you who must have them - firsthand or otherwise)

Here's one of mine:

When I used to dredge up in the Mariposa area in the late 70's there was an older man up there dredging too...right below the bridge at Briceburg, where the river takes a turn. He was running a six inch dredge and doing quite well...the river was unusually low those years, and dredging was in it's heyday. This is a story he told me one night when we were sitting outside our campers;

The Diltz mine is back in the hills above the river just down from the Briceburg bridge. In the late 1800's there was a shortage of experienced powder men. Because of this, the mine owners hired some "experienced" powder men from back east - who had worked in the coal mines there - to extend one of their paying shafts. The new hires placed charges in the back of the tunnel, lit the fuses and skidaddled.

There was an unusually large explosion.

I gather that coal mines need fairly large amounts of powder to break up the rock compared to the sometimes 'delicate' charges that were needed to fracture the gold bearing rock in the gold mines.

These charges were much too big; they blew out a huge area of the hill that lay beyond where the tunnel was headed.

It rained quartz and rock over a huge area on the hillsides above the river.

The owners immediately shut down the mine, and had everyone, including the women, walk the surrounding hillsides picking up the scattered quartz, much of it apparently contained free gold.

These hills are loaded with manzanita and such (I looked around in a very cursory way), it's very nasty climbing/walking/whateverit'scalled - but there you go.

(Gurbstake, you ever heard this one?)

fwiw

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No David, I never heard that one, the one about the $50.00 gold slugs and the drowned tax collector yes. Moffit had a supposed mint in Mt Orphir, but it was not where they minted the coins, they were minted in San Francisco, and brought to Mt. Orphir, as a gold exchange. He did drown, and he did have a saddle bag full of the newly minted coins. and he probly hid them, before crossing the creek as it was rain swollen. I'm looking for some of those coins now, there has to be some inthe area I'm hunting. They are worth about $25000.00 each in mint shape, which they should be in. Its a true tail, it is recorded in the county records office up here and was in the Mariposa Gazett when it happened. Many different versions, but at least I know the facts as recorded in the recordeds office. Grubstake P.S the only place any of Moffits 2 1/2 oz gold octogons have shown up, was on the USS Central America. So they are real coins

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Grubstake,

Yes that is one of the great mysteries of Mariposa County.

I looked in the area of the "creek" (read torrential river in flashflood mode), he supposedly drowned in, and its full of immense boulders - it looked like a Volkswagon avalanche.

I was totally intimidated as I tried to imagine where to begin (this was again, years ago).

Decided to wait for more research tidbits if they ever surfaced...up til now, they haven't.

I have seen one of the coins - a replica? - I think it was in San Francisco...drool.

Note: if you have never read 'Ship of Gold in a Deep Blue Sea'...you're missing a great read - the truely unbelievable story of how they found the Central America.

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Well the tv stuff is one thing for sure. The story itself, the background they write about the Central Am. and it's passengers and it's cargo, the research, the equipment they built for the search, the problems; with poachers, lawyers and storms...the vitality of the man in charge and his brilliance...the book puts those details and much more into focus. It's one of those events that is so much larger than life - almost like this guy was born to do this.

anyway...

regards,

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A tale of a small, but fun, treasure hunt.

In this small town of Quartzsite, there is a gentleman that hides $250.00 worth of quarters, twice a year. Once in the spring and once in the fall. He has been doing this for many years.

$250.00 in quarters are placed in a plastic shopping bag. They are not rolled, they are in bulk. The bag is then rolled up so it makes a nice tight package and a couple of rubber bands are placed around it.

The quarters are then hid somewhere within the city limits. Always on top of the ground and within sight. In other words, not covered with rocks or grass or sticks or anything. The city limits are six by six mi., or maybe 7 by 7 mi., don't remember. Thats a fairly large area, but we can narrow it down.

The treasure is never hid on private property, always on public property.

The town can now be divided into four quadrants, as Hwy. 95 runs north and south, just about the center of town and Hwy. I-10, runs east and west almost in the center or town. You can now eliminate all private property in each quad., as well as state land in the NW quad.. you are now rid of probably forty per cent of area.

When the hunt starts, he will give a new clue, on monday every week, until the treasure is found. Sometimes it is found in three or four wks. and sometimes two or three months. Not as easy as it sounds.

The clues go something like this: The quarters are hid 90 steps from the edge of a paved road. [in some cases from the edge of a gravel rd.].

If it rains you may have to wade water to reach the quarters.

The quarters are hid by a tree at the junction of two washs.....And so it goes, on and on.

Later on in the hunt he will usually add: If you will pick up two 30 gal. bags of road trash, he will add an aditional $100.00. The trash must be brought in before the quarters are found.

If and when you find them, you will also find in the bag, a business card. Take the coins and card to his office. You get to keep the $250.00 bulk package and he will write you a check for an additional $750.00. Or as the case may be $850.00 if you have turned in the two bags of trash. Eleven hundred total. Not bad for a little fun. I have been lucky and found them twice. Been real close a couple of other times but no cigar. Kind of like being real close to a nugget but not right over it.

If one does find them, say in the spring hunt, then you or not allowed to hunt in the fall hunt.

Talkin treasure brings to mind the treasure of Almenzo Yearden...spelling????. around ohio gulch in montana. Almenzo hid cache of gold coins around the area and was found dead by the door of his burned out cabin..........But then thats another story. Bob T.

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Good Saturday morning FlakMagnet. Don't know whats4dinner, just finished breakfast. :lol:

Since you like stories are they restricted to early day or would more recent be of any interest?

Example: my in-laws in Papua New Guinea.

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Hi FlakMagnet, the one in the pic with shoes on is me, the guy in the red sweater next to me is the BIG CHIEF, about 5,000 people as his subjects. His son was my amigo and my ticket in there. The entire tribe was stretched along for several miles in that valley. The village there was at 8,000 ft. altitude, alway cold.

The guy with the knife was the village judge, the guy in the yellow rain coat was their security chief and keeper of the little hut just behind that big one, where the heads were kept. I wasn't allowed to take pics of that since they were illegal.

The two women sitting down in front were the official village "crier's", by that I mean that when I went some where they would go into a fit of crying.

The house that I'm standing in is all material from the jungle, it's called a "haus man", meaning man house. It was about 20 ft. wide and 75 ft. long. Every night all the men would gather there so the women could feed them, cooking the food over holes in the dirt floor. Then after every one was fed, they would have their daily meeting.

The chairs were actually limbs tied to the wall and a cross tie at the end where you sat. During the meeting if you got tired then just lay straight back and the chair was then your bed.

In that very "haus man" is where they actually gave me a wife one night. That's another story.

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See?

I knew you'd have some (other) stuff you could tell us.

That was a good one Garimpo...I'm telling you - it would make a great article of some sort. People would be wanting that book from you. You could write it while it's raining.

Ok I'll shut-up.

(the guy with the blade makes me nervous just from the picture...in person it must have been amazing).

regards and thanks,

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Ok guys, I knew I was headed for trouble posting that.

Actually I spent the better part of a year there flying a private contract for the airline I worked for at the time. Chevron had an extensive drilling operation in the mountains and a company from Calif. constructed the runway, they did a fantastic job. No roads were allowed into the site, the nearest road was probably 200 miles from the drill site. Everything was hauled in by aircraft and then the drilling teams and all their equipment was flown from the airport to the drill sites by helicopter. The worlds largest helicopter was one of them, a Russian copter. I saw it crash one day, what a mess. Had pics of it but that was several divorces ago, can't find the pics.

Below is what it looks like in a C130 Herc on short final. The airport is at Lake Kutubu in the highlands.

Gold, lots of gold was the reason I returned there on my own. That's a very long story.

About the "haus man", one night they gave me a wife, not for one night but as long as I wanted her. There the men do nothing but hunt and sit on their asses. The women do all the work, and rightfully so they think a man needs a wife. Once you have a wife then your expected to beat or whip her fairly often. You can hear that custom being applied nearly every day or night. I guess a good "switch" works wonders for a marriage.

I had only been there two nights and at the nightly meeting that day two of my body guards had previously seen two women in one of the other villages and they "fell in love". That night as usual, I was sitting next to the Chief, next to me was the Judge, next to him was the security guy in yellow. On the other side of the Chief was my amigo and two of my body guards and the meeting was to determine how much of a "bride price" the two guys were going to have to pay the parents of the two girls. After about an hour of haggling, the price agreed upon was for each of the guys to pay $1,000.00 and 10 pigs each. :P Ain't love wonderful.

None of this was in English so I had no idea what was going on. I found out a short time later that the next order of business was the selection of a wife for me. The choices were two very young and "beautiful" girls that had been captured from another tribe and were slaves. I didn't have a clue as to what was taking place until the "winner" screamed, ran up to me, grabbed me by the arm and out the door we went. So was so happy that she was no longer a slave. :D I think it best to end this part of the story here. :rolleyes:

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Hmm, interesting. Sounds like parts of that could be put into another book. I know you're having too much fun and would rather not. Maybe you could just recite stuff like this and get a good secretary to take it down and a writer to craft the book while you have say on the final product. Of course that's probably impractical though. And some people prefer to keep the personal life private, which is understandable. Have to recruit someone to do a bio. on you I guess. :D

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:P OK you guys I'll let you in on one.. When I first went prospecting with my father (age 6) he told me about a mine that you could flake gold off into you pan from the ore vein. Well like any other 6 year old, I wanted to see it, with visions of candy & ice cream dancing in my head. My father said sure we go right by it on the way to our claims. True to his story, he took me over to this mine that had an adit going into the shaft at the 50 foot level. My Dad checked for rattlers and when it was safe he showed me where the gold was. Well I could'nt see it and he handed me the rock hammer and a pan and told me to take some of the purple material from the footwall. I did just that qnd when we got back to the Jeep, my father show me how to dry pan and boy oh boy was I in heaven when that tail of gold showed up. Little did I know that 30 years later I would own and be working that mine with 3 of my friends. B)

The 29 Prospector (aka Bob)

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:P OK you guys I'll let you in on one.. When I first went prospecting with my father (age 6) he told me about a mine that you could flake gold off into you pan from the ore vein. Well like any other 6 year old, I wanted to see it, with visions of candy & ice cream dancing in my head. My father said sure we go right by it on the way to our claims. True to his story, he took me over to this mine that had an adit going into the shaft at the 50 foot level. My Dad checked for rattlers and when it was safe he showed me where the gold was. Well I could'nt see it and he handed me the rock hammer and a pan and told me to take some of the purple material from the footwall. I did just that qnd when we got back to the Jeep, my father show me how to dry pan and boy oh boy was I in heaven when that tail of gold showed up. Little did I know that 30 years later I would own and be working that mine with 3 of my friends. B)

The 29 Prospector (aka Bob)

Hey Bob, to bad candy and ice cream have sky-rocketed. Hope it's paying off.

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Now Flak, you see what a good story that 29prospector had. Close to home with a good outcome. :P

Unlike me where the politician's kicked my ass out of the country, even had the cops escort me to the door of the air plane. Later another chapter.

Another pic of me and the "inlaws" in front of the "haus man". The guy on my left is Kim, the son of the Big Chief.

Don't know how many wifes the Chief had but Kim had at that time had five, in different villages. Sure is a lot of pigs to pay out for "bride prices". ;)

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