Most of us have dreamed about hitting it big with the lottery, but what about finding a hidden treasure? Just imagine the excitement of uncovering some long lost loot. Well, as it turns out, that concept isn’t too crazy since Mississippi has a history filled with legends and tales of treasures buried long ago. From pirate’s booty to wartime stashes, here are eight hidden treasures in Mississippi still waiting to be found. (Maybe by you?)
1. The Gore Fortune
Following the Revolutionary War, T.P. Gore, a millionaire from Oklahoma, traveled to Mississippi and purchased over 600 acres of land, which he used to construct his home. It believed that Gore buried approximately $400,000 in gold bars and coins on his property – a common practice since there weren’t any nearby banks at the time. Today, the mansion site, which is located in Gore Springs, contains only the millionaire’s grave and, quite possibly, a hefty amount of gold.
2. The Buried Treasure of Pirate Patrick Scott
In the early part of the 19th century, immediately following the American Revolution, pirates wreaked havoc from the headwaters of the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico. One pirate in particular, Patrick Scott, is said to have buried large amounts of his loot in the city of Ocean Springs.
3. The Pirate House
Although it was damaged beyond repair during Hurricane Camille, the legend of Bay St. Louis’ Pirate House lives on. The house is believed to have been frequented by the well-known pirate Jean Lafitte and his crew, which some speculate had as many as 1,000 members! It was rumored that the home had a secret tunnel, possibly used to easily transport treasure from the Gulf. To this day, many believe the underground tunnels still exist and contain some of the pirates’ hidden treasure.
4. The Rocky Springs Treasure
During the 1790s, the town of Rocky Springs became well-known because of its location on the Natchez Trace and access to fresh water. And it was towns just like this that attracted outlaws such as the Mason-Harpe Gang, a group known for tormenting travelers in the area. By the early 1800s, the gang set up a hideout in Rocky Springs and, supposedly, buried tens of thousands of dollars in stolen gold and silver between the church and cemetery at Little Sand Creek near Rocky Springs.
5. The Buried Treasure of Chief Toby Tubby
Even though Lafayette County was being settled by white men during the early part of the 19th century, there was still a large number of Chickasaw Indians in the area. One tribe of Chickasaws was led by Chief Toby Tubby, a prosperous land and slave owner. Supposedly, Chief Toby Tubby greatly increased his fortune when, in 1835, he sold thousands of acres of land and was compensated with government notes and gold. The chief later died as a result of a liquor-induced fight and, as was tradition, was buried with some of his worldly possessions, including his gold. Several years later, sources claim a woman visited the Chief’s burial site near the Tallahatchie River, alleged to be a descendant of his, and hired workers to begin digging for his treasure. According to local folklore, the mysterious woman disappeared as suddenly as she had arrived. Some believe she found the treasure, while others believe it is waiting to be discovered.
6. James Copeland’s Buried Treasure
The 19th century American outlaw James Copeland and his gang were well known throughout the coastal states, from Texas to Florida; although, a majority of their crimes took place in southern Mississippi and Alabama. The 60 member gang committed numerous crimes, one of the most well-known being the several barrels of gold coins the gang stole and supposedly buried near the Catahoula Creek.
7. The Gold of Black Hawk
In 1837, while on the Mississippi River, the steamboat Ben Sherrod sank after catching on fire. The steamer was carrying hundreds of people and, allegedly, $75,000 in gold. In the years since the sinking of the ship, several gold coins have been found on the east bank of the Mississippi River near the community of Black Hawk – a finding that many believe further substantiates the claim that the steamer was carrying quite a hefty load.
8. The Fortune of the Union Paymaster
Legend has it that, during the Civil War, a Union paymaster buried just under $100,000 in gold coins somewhere near the train station in Holly Springs. While the paymaster buried his fortune with the intent of retrieving it at a later time, he was killed in battle and never returned for the gold, which, to this day, has not been found.
With Mississippi’s rich history, hidden treasure could be just about anywhere. Do you have a story about a buried treasure in Mississippi? Tell us in the comments section below!