Thursday, July 13, 2006

My Quackenbush – part 5

My Quackenbush part 1
My Quackenbush part 2
My Quackenbush part 3
My Quackenbush part 4

by Tom Gaylord

I resolved to stay another day and explore the trees, as this was the best clue I had found thus far. It took have the day just to get my horse up on the hill where the trees were, and I had to backtrack once to be sure they were the right ones. When I got there, I immediately found a very suspicious looking grove of trees that looked just like the one Jack described.

The ground inside the grove was bare of grass because the closeness of the trees admitted little light. I allowed my eyes to adjust to the low light then began to look for signs of disturbed earth. If Jack had been there within the past ten years, I figured there would be some signs. Indeed, there were!

I found a shallow depression in the ground almost in the center of the grove. There were old signs of a campfire there, but I was more intrigued by the way the ground dipped down in a shallow depression. From my days working in the orchard, I knew that the soil in this region never went back to its normal level, once disturbed. It always left a depression.

I started digging and within the first three feet my shovel hit something hard. Going slower, I uncovered the corner of an earthenware crock. Working quickly, I dug up the crock and found the surprise of my life. In two burlap sacks inside the crock were many hundreds of fifty dollar gold pieces, just like the one Jack had given me!

But the treasure didn't end there. Under the spot where crock number one had rested, were crocks two and three. Both were filled with sacks of the same contents as the first, but these held even more! It looked as though Jack had been digging up crock one only, because the other two were quite full.

I had to construct a travois to carry the coins back to my home, they were so heavy. Once there, I had to plan my next move. The money I now had in my possession was more than I would be able to make in a lifetime, but I couldn't just come out with it or people would want to know all the details.

Even in those early days, certain kinds of people were always trying to find out your private business. As soon as they found out where I got the wealth, there would come a flood of claimants, each with a convincing story of how the money was really theirs. The courts would listen to each of these thieves and enjoin me to not spend one cent of the money until the whole mess could be resolved. No sir, I did not want anyone to know where this gold had come from, or, indeed, that I had it at all!



Post a Comment

<< Home