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October 1, 2003---Volume 1, Number 15

Treasure Hunter's Secret Manual


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FROM THE EDITOR:   Greetings !  We have had beautiful weather here in Utah the past 2 weeks and I have been out & about---enjoying the weather, scenery and treasure hunting !  This month will be busy---producing 2 newsletters AND going on 2 "road trips"---but, I enjoy keeping busy.  I wish ALL of you great success in YOUR treasure hunting adventures !!


Recently I acquired an ALMOST complete set of back issues of THC ( TREASURE HUNTER CONFIDENTIAL ) newsletter that was produced 1989-1999.  BUT:  I'm missing 6 issues !!  I'd like to obtain the 12/98 & 3/99 thru 7/99 issues.  Can you help ?  If so, please email me---THANKS !!


In the last newsletter I told you about a good book: QUANTRILL'S WAR.  30 books were available at $14.95.  There are now just 8 left.  If interested in obtaining one---just email me.


Twenty more treasure leads ( 34-54 ) have been added to the STATE TREASURES page--under ARIZONA.  Check them out at:  http://www.losttreasureusa.com/StateTreasures.htm#ARIZONA


Two weeks ago I asked for help ( from my 400 (+-) AOL readers )---to assist me in retrieving my "LOST" Favorites File.  Thank you to the 27 that offered suggestions !!  I FOUND them, again & am now "back in business" !!  One of you actually sent me YOUR Favorites---but when I deleted ALL of my AOL-8, so I could re-install it---your email got deleted from my mail file.  Please send it again !  If anybody else would like to share YOUR Favorites with me---please email me the links.




Here is a link to a story written by a friend of mine---RICHARD WALBURN.


The World Guide to Archaeological and Heritage Volunteering


Here is an old series of 8 stories written for the White Sands newspaper.


Take this short quiz and decide for yourself:


Want to learn how to break ciphers ?  This sounds like an interesting Association:


Did you find a cache of very damaged $100.00 bills?  Wondering how to spend them ?


This is the story of the lost river of gold located near the California and Nevada state line:


200 military manuals on CD:  http://www.military-media.com/


Missing something for your collection?  Be sure to read about the BIG hunt scheduled for November:  http://www.shilohrelics.com/


About 10 billion dollars worth of museum items are stolen, sold or traded each year.  Here are two web pages from the website that will give you some idea of what the museums deal with:


Did you ever wonder where your friend got that badge and fake ID ?  http://www.nles.com/


"We got the rocks back"----


PSSSSSSTT !!  Hey you !  Wanna buy a bronze cannon?  NO?  How about a treasure salvage boat ?


"Whether taken by naive hobbyists or plundered by sophisticated criminals, the legacy of our ancestors is in jeopardy."  http://www.fbi.gov/publications/leb/1997/july971.htm

By Richard Walburn



Need to buy ( or rent ) a GPR, magnetometer or other piece of geophysical equipment ?  Try this website:  http://www.giscogeo.com/


One man's "essay" about the Endangered Species Act.  Many government properties are "off-limits" to treasure seekers because there MIGHT be an endangered species living there.


Check out my website for the upcoming October Events:  http://www.LostTreasureUSA.com/Events.htm 

Treasure Hunter's Secret Manual


By Anthony M. Belli

Nye County-  The ghost town of Tybo is located in the Hot Creek Range in Nye County.  It was a bustling mining town in the 1870’s and it residents were notoriously distrustful of banks.  It is believed that much of what was taking from the mines was buried for safe keeping in the vicinity, although no specific legends as too any one cache stands out, many say several undiscovered caches remain buried and forgotten in the area.

A gambler is reported to have spent one weekend cleaning the Tybo miners out of about $3,000 in gold coins during a wild poker game.  Rumor began that the gambler had used a marked deck and soon the miners made plans to jump the gambler and recover their losses when he prepared to leave town.

These rumors made their way back to the man, who’d boarded the Belmont stage.  A short distance east of Tybo in Kiln Canyon the gambler had the driver stop.  He walked into the sagebrush with his money in a canvas sack but returned to the stage without it.  He told the driver he’d be back for it later when things had cooled off.  The stage proceeded to Belmont unmolested, but three days later the gambler was killed in a gunfight in a Belmont Saloon, never having returned to Tybo for his cache.

Another tale of Tybo’s lost treasure is the story of a charcoal contractor who was known to frequently ride out from his kilns in a northwest direction every few days to deposit his money in the ground nearby, always returning in less then one hours time.  One day the man turned up missing and was found on the road to Tybo not far from town. He had a broken neck which is believed to have been the result of his being thrown from his horse. It is believed that the man had amassed a fortune, and never trusting banks deposited it all below ground.  Searches went on for days for his lost wealth but it was never reportedly found.

Nevada’s “Whiskey Cache” is considered to be one of the State’s more interesting lost treasures.  There are conflicting tales here so to simplify the matter I will stick to the basics… 

A freighter was transporting a load of casks containing 100 proof whiskey from California to northern Arizona.  During a vicious storm the freighter lost his team and wagon along the old road between 18 and 23 miles south of Beatty in southern Nye County at the sand dunes.  It is believed the freighter received aid in 1910 at Rose’s Well, and when he returned to the loss site nothing was recovered.  It is thought that the constantly shifting sands of the dunes simply covered the wagon and its load.  No reports of the lost whiskey cache having been found have surfaced. 

 Clark County-  Known as the “Lost Cattleman’s Cache” the tale begins in 1887 with a Colorado River Rancher named Hiram Smith who was awarded the government contract to supply cattle to the Indian Agency at Ft. Mohave.  In June he drove a heard to the reservation and was paid the sum of $16,000 in twenty-dollar gold pieces. 

 Smith was seen to have placed the coins in a heavy leather money belt and proceeded to the nearest Saloon to down a few before returning home.  Two hours later the Indian Agent recalled seeing Smith driving his team and wagon out the reservation gate.

 Smith never returned home and a search party was mustered.  Three days into the search they found Smith alive at Boundary Cove, just across the river from the Arizona mining camp of Oatman. 

Smith was taken back to his ranch where he died two weeks later.  During this time Smith stated that after getting drunk at the Fort he gotten lost.  Unable to find his way he buried his money belt for safekeeping, marking the location with an Indian water bottle called an “olla” & 2 horseshoes.

The story of Smith’s gold cache spread like wildfire which resulted in several unsuccessful searches over the years.  In 1910 the interest was once again renewed when rancher, P.W. Sayles found Smith’s markers, the olla and 2 horseshoes on the Arizona side of the Colorado River.  Once again searches

were made, but without success.  Today this search would now have to be conducted under water as this area is inundated by Lake Mohave.

Lyon County- One of Nevada’s most famous stories of buried treasure comes from a stage hold up which occurred just outside of Empire, one mile from, and in view of their destination, the Carson City Mint.  Four highwaymen halted the coach and secured jewelry from the passengers along with the 300 pound Wells Fargo express box, containing gold for the Mint, whereupon the road agents fled on foot.

Within 30 minutes the incident had been reported at Carson City and a posse was in hot pursuit of the outlaws.  In the subsequent gunfight that resulted 3 of the 4 bandits was killed, the forth a Manuel Gonzales admitted burying the loot but refused to say where.  A search for the cache ended with negative results.

Gonzales was convicted for the robbery and given 20 years at the Nevada Territorial Prison.  Being a model prisoner he was released after 8 years but died almost immediately there after never having recovered the gold horde.

Fellow inmates at the prison said Gonzales frequently spoke of his awaiting fortune stating he could see the place where he buried it from his cell window.  Today guards from Nevada’s Prison still spend some of their days off in search of the lost cache.

Washoe County-  One of Nevada & California’s more infamous outlaws was A.J. “Jack” Davis the leader of a gang who on Nov. 4, 1870 heisted the express car of the Central Pacific Railroad.  The gang was apprehended and given terms in the Nevada State Prison.  Davis is known to have cached $3,000 in gold coin and bullion from the job near the site of the River Inn along the North bank of the Truckee River.  On Feb. 17, 1875 Davis was released from prison but was killed in a spectacular gunfight with Wells Fargo Shotgun Messengers at the Willows Station in California during a botched robbery attempt on September 3, 1877.  If Davis ever returned for his cache is unknown.

 Mineral County-  Aurora was once one of Nevada’s fastest growing boomtowns which was known as a law & order town unlike it’s neighbor the lawless town of Bodie on the California side which was known as a “shooter’s town.”  In October of 1929 two men, Walter Dowell and James Handle ripped up the floorboards in an old abandoned adobe building in Aurora recovering a wooden strongbox.  Inside was a blood-stained canvas bag containing $5,000 in $20. gold pieces.  The belief is that the treasure had been the proceeds of several stage robberies which took place along the Aurora – Bodie road.  Four men involved with the hold ups, Wm. Buckley, John McDowell, John Dailey and James Masterson were hung by an Aurora lynch mob on Feb. 9, 1864. 

Esmeralda County-  A Goldfield miner, Robert Niccovich recovered 1,321 - $20. gold pieces in September, 1936 from the ruins of the old Downer Brothers Assay Office in Goldfield.

 A flash flood hit Goldfield on September 3, 1913 washing away 2 safes containing hundreds of gold coins down a gully.  The safes were never found and are believed to be covered by mud.

 Twenty sacks of high-grade gold ore valued at more then $20,000 were reported to have buried in a mine dump by two men in 1910 somewhere between Goldfield and Diamondfield.  The reason for doing this is not known, but both men died shortly thereafter and are not known to have ever returned to claim their prize.

 Humboldt County-  “Black Rock or Bust!” The ruins of the ghost town of Hardin City are all that remains today of this once mining town.  The story begins with a man by the name of James Allen Hardin who in 1849 was a member of an Oregon bound wagon train from the east.

 While encamped near Double Hot Springs Hardin volunteered to go hunt as the emigrant train was short of food.  Hardin accompanied by John Lambert set off into the Black Rock Range in an unknown direction.  They reported that once 3 to 4 miles from the camp the men crossed a dry sandy wash where they found metal.  Believing it to be lead they picked up several pieces to later melt down into bullets as they were likewise short on ammo as well.  After finding no game the men returned to camp where that night Hardin cast most of the metal into bullets, but he kept one piece of the metal for use later.

 The wagon train moved on to Oregon, and Hardin separated and in time settled in Petaluma, California where he worked as a carpenter.  One day his neighbor picked up the piece of lead he’d found in Hardin’s shop and asked if he could assay it, Hardin agreed.  The metal which Hardin had used years before to cast bullets proved to be high in silver content.

 Hardin immediately set up a small expedition to the Black Rock area where he intended to stake a claim on the ravine where he’d found the metal.  They departed Petaluma on July 9, 1858 and would spend the summer looking for what everyone thought would be an immense deposit of silver ore, unfortunately it was not relocated.

 For the next two years Hardin and others returned to the Black Rock area, but with the outbreak of the Paiute War in 1860 all mining ceased in the area. A year after the war ended, in 1866 a California man discovered a ledge which was believed to be Hardin’s lost silver mine.

 Word spread like wildfire and soon miners were descending upon the Black Rock desert to stake their claims.  The mining camp of “Hardin City” named  after the original discoverer was founded.  Quantities of ore were shipped out for assay which returned with a high quantity of both silver and gold.

 At first the ore was sent to Dail’s Mill in Washoe Valley to be processed, later other shipments were sent to other mills.  The reports from Dail’s continued to return good content of silver and gold, while the other mills reported the ore sent to them to be worthless.  Regardless Hardin City grew, a post office was established along with many businesses, and two ore mills in order to keep from sending the ore miles away.

 The new Hardin City Mills continued to test the ore and every time it returned worthless.  An expert assayer was called in who recommended a new reduction process was required and modifications were made at one of the mills.  Yet the ore continued to prove worthless.  By 1868 Hardin City had been abandoned and had become a ghost town.  It was later revealed that a flaw in the original reports showing high grade silver & gold ore was being pulled out of Hardin City had been the result of the Mill’s failure to clean out the mill pans which returned a positive reading from the silver and gold content from prior tests.

 None the less the question remains… where is Hardin’s original dry wash which had proven high in silver content? For more then a century the answer has eluded treasure hunters, some believe the dry wash hasn’t been found yet, while others believe the site is likely to have been covered by sand from various rains and storms over the years.

 Douglas County- Genoa, Nevada was once a major transportation hub between Placerville, California in the Mother Lode & Nevada’s own Comstock lode.  After a fierce Sierra storm the road along the Kingsbury Grade lay covered by fallen trees and debris.

Proceeding east bound along the road descending the grade was veteran stage driver Charlie Watson and his only passenger, a Wells Fargo shotgun messenger.  At some point along the grade the stage stopped and the messenger left his weapon with the coach as he got down to remove a deadfall which had completely covered the road.

 Suddenly two armed road agents appeared and proceeded to relieve the coach of its cargo of $20,000 in gold eagles that were being transported in a wooden keg.

 After arriving at Genoa the robbery was reported and a posse assembled.  A search continued for the two outlaws and the keg but no sign of the fugitives or treasure was ever found.

 More then 20 years later in the Montana State Penitentiary an inmate lay dying of tuberculosis in the prison hospital.  He confided to the doctor that he’d taken part in a stage robbery in Nevada where they’d relieved the Virginia City-bound stage of a wooden keg of gold coins.

 The inmate stated they carried only $2,000 of the loot away as the rest was to heavy.  He claimed to have buried the remaining $18,000 in gold at the base of a large pine tree just on the edge of Genoa, and that neither he or his partner in crime ever returned for the balance.  He gave the doctor explicit directions to the tree, but never said why he and his partner never returned for the cache.

 The doctor relayed the dying man’s confession to authorities at Genoa.  Soon word leaked out and Geona found itself inundated with treasure hunters all digging holes looking for the lost keg of gold.  It was never reported to have been found, but was believed buried at the treasure tree near the west edge of the town.

 Over the years Genoa suffered many tragedies which altered the appearance of the town.  Floods, fire, and storm damage have all been cited as issues which have prevented the successful recovery of this keg of gold.

Anthony M. Belli is a historian and writer of California Gold Rush history

who specializes in research and mapping the ethnic diversity of Gold Rush era El Dorado County.  He has appeared on the Discovery Channel and is published regularly in Lost Treasure Magazine.  He can be reached at: 530.644.1849, or anthony_belli@california49ers.com

Happy Hunting,

Anthony Belli, aka: The Hangman


*NOTE- Before using your detector at any of these ghost town sites check locally to determine if local laws permit such use. Report looters of protected archaeological sites,

and grave robbers!

BIGHORN COUNTY-  Hillsboro finds its roots in Montana’s gold mining

history.  More then 10 buildings are said to mark the landscape of this once

booming town, including the first post office at Dryhead.


Located north of Lovell, on County Road 37 just south of Barry’s Landing.

4w/d is required for access.  Also check out two others on County Road 37,

Lockhart, aka: Lockhart Ranch is located due south of Hillsboro.  ornHH

Ewing is south of Lockhart also on CR 37, but sits in Carbon County.


JUDITH BASIN COUNTY-  Barker and it neighboring ghost town of

Hughesville were founded after the discovery of silver in 1879.  By 1893

both towns nearly died with the silver crash of 1893.   As the price of silver

rose these two villages once again flourished after the mines re-opened.  By

1929 the population had increased to 500, and the railroad added a spur to

the towns.  As a result of the war act the mines closed again in 1943, with

the school closing in 1953.  The town sites are remote but accessible by 2 w/d, located in the little Belt Mountains, 20 miles due east of Monarch.


FERGUS COUNTY-  Maiden was once a gold mining town which reached

a population of 1200 by 1888.  As the gold petered out the population in 1896 had dropped to just 200.  The town is unoccupied although not much remains.  2 w/d access, located outside of Lewistown. 

Kendall is reported to have many ruins, including the foundations of the oldFirst Presbyterian Church and several stores.  It grew with the development of the rich Goggle Eye mine.  Check locally for directions, 2 w/d accessible.

PHILLIPS COUNTY-  Ruby Gulch today is marked by just a few old buildings after being wiped out by fire in 1935.  10 to 15 million tons of gold bearing ore remains although the war act of 1942 halted mining.

The site is located not far from Helena and is 2 w/d accessible.

 Landusky, aka: Sandusky is located off S.R. 191 and much of the original town remains in various states of decay.  On December 26, 1894 the towns founder, Powell Landusky was killed in a gunfight with Kid Curry in a local saloon.  2 w/d access ok.

DEER LODGE COUNTY-  Coolidge, aka: “Mystery Town”  Not much historical info. at this time, other than Coolidge was a mining town and why

it was know as “Mystery Town” is indeed a mystery.  The ghost town sits within the boundaries of the Beaverhead/Deerlodge National Forest so do check here before using a detector.  Many of the standing structures are reported to be in good condition and there are quite a number of them.

A large mine building remains standing with Crystal Clear Creek flowing through it.  The town is snowbound in winter months, check locally for directions.  It sits approximately 25 miles NW of Polaris.  2 w/d ok.

BEAVERHEAD COUNTY-  Bannack is located just out of the town of Dillion and several of the old buildings remain standing and the town is much intact… including the old gallows pole.  Much history here including the fact the town’s folk hung their own Sheriff, Henry Plummer here.  Snow bound in winter months, 2wd accusable.

Hecla still has old buildings standing here although you’d have to check locally for directions as I have little info.  2 w/d access ok, snow in winter.

The schoolhouse is said to remain standing as well.

POWELL COUNTY-  Little is known of the mining camp of Gold Creek as it paid out fairly quickly and never actually developed from camp to town status.  Few remains are visible, 2 w/d access is OK again

winter snow will prevent travel to the camp site.  What local historians know of this forgotten gold camp comes from the diaries of two brothers, Granville and James Stuart.  James served as sheriff of Missoula County.

The site is located not far from Helena, check locally for directions.

GRANITE COUNTY- Many a ghost can be found in Granite County…

Granite-  A silver strike around 1877 sent miners flocking to the camp of

Granite.  She quickly grew as the mines paid well and the town of Granite

was founded in 1884.  She was known as “Montana’s Silver Queen” and

reached a population of 3,000 early in the 1890’s.  Many old buildings are

still standing including the bank with its vault intact!  4 w/d is recommended.  To get there go in to Phillipsburg and turn south at the only four-way stop in town.  Go south 1 mile and turn right when you see the sign for Granite.  Keep to the left road and continue 4 miles to location.

Kirkville is located 1 mile SE of Phillipsburg and was a small town of 125 which was established in 1890 as a mill town.  At one time the 100 stamp mill ran day and night.  Today’s population is 5.  Many mill buildings remain standing some are occupied, most remain in good condition.  This site is on PRIVATE PROPERTY so inquire first please.

Garnet was once a boomtown not once but on three separate occasions… thus far.  Gold quartz was discovered in the Garnet range about 1866.  Miners flocked to this Montana Mother Lode which at one time reached a population of 5000 white and Chinese miners.    

The town of Garnet once sported many homes and an impressive business district.  In 1898 the school registered 41 students and the three big producing mines in operation were, The Nancy Hanks, The Lead King, & The Grant – Hartford which had petered out around 1917.

Other ghost towns in the immediate vicinity are, Bear Gulch, and Beartown, aka: Bearmouth which was of considerable size.  Take Montana 1 to Drummond.  From here take the frontage road towards Missoula.  Proceed about 11 miles to the turn off for Bear Gulch / Garnet and stay on this road for another 10 miles, climb the China Grade to Garnet.  Many buildings still standing.

Red Lion once reached a peak population of about 500.  Gold was discovered here in 1875, and went industrial in the late 1890’s when the Red Lion Company moved in erecting two mills, which employed about 200 of the town’s men.  Not much remains today but a few log cabins, and the tramway towers which hauled men from the town up to the mines.  From Georgetown Lake go N on Highway 1 continue 1 mile pass Seven Gables and turn left to the Discovery Basin Ski Area road.  Go another 2 miles and turn right (road may not be marked here) and proceed N 4 miles to Red Lion. 2 w/d OK.


Well---there you go !  Your 15th newsletter !!  Back issues can be read on my website:
http://www.LostTreasureUSA.com/NewsletterAchiveIndex.htm .  Please email me YOUR FAVORITES, links, stories, etc: 
Be safe & have FUN seeking those many many many treasures out there !  I'll see you on the 15th !


You ALL should know my routine by NOW !  I end EVERY newsletter with a big THANK YOU to my wife TARA.  She allows me the freedom to continue my work on producing this twice-monthly newsletter, plus managing the website and forums.  Without her support I could NOT do this !


DISCLAIMER :   This LOST TREASURE USA newsletter contains links to sites on the internet that are owned and operated by third parties.  I am not responsible for the availability of, or the content located on or through, any such third-party site.

PRIVACY STATEMENT :  This newsletter's email address lists are NEVER sold or otherwise made public.  I respect your privacy.

COPYRIGHT :   This LOST TREASURE USA newsletter, and my website at www.LostTreasureUSA.com   are copyrighted 2003 by FLOYD MANN ( D.B.A. Lost Treasure USA ).  But, you may ( please ! ) forward it to as many people as you like.

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