Wouldn’t it be great to come across a long hidden or buried treasure? How easy would it be for a person to forget a treasure’s exact location, especially over a long period of time? Or what if something happened to them without anyone else knowing where they hid it? It’s easy to think that this could have happened many times in history. Here are some places in Missouri that are said to contain a hidden fortune. Should we start digging?
1. Spanish treasure near Noble Hill.
A Spanish treasure is supposedly buried somewhere on Highway 13 near Noble Hill, about 13 miles north of Springfield on the Polk-Greene County line.
2. The Kaffer Treasure, Armstrong.
About forty miles northwest of Columbia, a cache of gold coins known as the Kaffer Treasure is buried near Armstrong.
3. Independence jewelry heist loot.
Sometime around 1927, a group of bandits stole $25,000 in gems and jewelry from an Independence jewelry store. It is said to be buried at the foot of an old oak tree between two large roots about 6 miles east of Independence. However, six miles east of Independence in 1927 would actually be somewhere in the Independence metropolitan area today, difficult to discern exactly where.
4. Lost Copper Mine in the Ozark Hills.
In the mid-nineteenth century, a man named Joseph Slater is said to have known the location of a hidden copper mine a few miles northwest of Jacks Fork near the Current River. He made several trips to New Orleans during this time, unloading nearly $50,000 worth of copper over a three or four year period. He had a mining claim, but in an effort to keep the mine secret, it was actually on a tract of land a couple of miles away from the mine.
When he discovered the mine was actually on another man’s property, instead of buying the land and thus revealing the mine’s location, he and his daughter sealed up the mine and moved east, planning to return at a later time and offer to purchase the land for farming. He never made it farther east than Missouri and eventually died, never to return to the Jacks Fork area. His daughter married and moved west, and no one in Shannon County ever saw then again. The legend of the mine, however, remains, still believed to be in the vicinity of the junction of the Jacks Fork and Current rivers. Many have searched for the mine over the years, but it has never been found.
5. Parson Keithly's hidden gold.
Parson Keithly was an odd character from the mid-nineteenth century who roamed the Ozark countryside, preaching on Sundays and wandering the area with his dog and his gun the rest of the time, sometimes disappearing for days. During one of these disappearances, he apparently had gone to California to search for gold during the rush. He was gone for around three years, then suddenly reappeared and returned to Missouri to preach and wander as before.
Turns out, Keithly had found gold in California, come home and hid it somewhere. His family never knew where, although there was a nearby cave he visited frequently. It was where he was eventually laid to rest upon his death. Many thought this cave might be where the treasure was hidden. Hints of the treasure over the years occurred when he would periodically pull a $10 gold piece from his pocket, hand it to his daughter and say, "See here what I’ve found.”
The cave is located near Galena, Missouri in Stone County.
6. Alf Bolin's outlaw loot.
Alf Bolin was a Missouri outlaw from the mid-1800’s. The story is that, many years ago, a man came to a farm on Highway JJ south of Kirbyville in Taney County looking for a treasure that Bolin had buried near a cave in the Fox Creek country containing gold and silver from his many robberies. The cave had been used as a marker to the nearby buried cache. There is definitely a good chance that Bolin’ had buried his loot in these hills.
“Murder Rocks,” on the Pine Mountain south of Kirbyville, is also known as “Alf Bolin Rocks” due to it being the location where Bolin and his gang of outlaws often hid and then robbed and sometimes murdered unfortunate travelers. It was also the area in which Bolin was later trapped and killed by a Union soldier commissioned to capture the outlaw. At the time of his death in 1863, Bolin was only 21 years old. With so many raids in this area, he had amassed a considerable fortune, but because he couldn’t keep it in a bank, he likely buried it near the cave. Unfortunately, the exact location of the burial spot died with the outlaw himself, and so the treasure is quite possibly still there.
7. Sunken treasure in the Mississippi.
In the Mississippi River that runs along the banks of St. Louis, several steamships have sunk long ago and over many years. Some of these are said contain treasures of gold coins.
8. Forty-Niner gold in Missouri.
Another Missouri man, long ago, is said to have struck it rich in the California gold rush. When he returned to his home near Waynesville in Pulaski County, it is believed that he buried $60,000 somewhere in the hills.
9. Sinking Creek Mine.
The Sinking Creek legend tells of a St. Louis doctor named Tyrell who, when treating a delirious, dying man, was told of a silver mine near Sinking Creek in Shannon County. The doctor must have felt there was some truth to the tale, because he started buying land near the creek, moving there and building himself a house. Both he and his son continued the search their entire lives, believing that the area contained sulphite or silver. However, the mine was never found.
10. Tin whistle loot north of Milford.
In the 1930s, some men were running a bootlegging operation out of Frontenac in Kansas, and one evening, when delivering their illicit merchandise, they held up a farmhouse near Arcadia taking guns, jewelry and gold. When they crossed the state line, they buried their ill-gotten gains just north of Milford. The location may have been chosen due to it being near another bootlegger who made moonshine for them and ran his operations out of Milford. According to the grandson of one of these men, his grandfather claimed the loot is still hidden in a small cavern near Horse Creek, with the names of the bootleggers carved in the walls.
11. Legend of Bone Hill Cemetery, Levesy.
Before the Civil War, a farming family came to the area of Levesy with their slaves, and settled on Bone Hill. They had their slaves build a stone fence which completely surrounded their acreage. When border warfare hit its peak in 1862, the farmer sold his acreage for gold and supposedly buried it somewhere along the stone wall. The family moved away and vowed to return in seven years, but they were never seen in the vicinity again. In the seventh year after they left, a mysterious light was said to been seen hovering above Bone Hill near a stone wall. Legend says that the light continues to appear every seven years and many believe the light is the ghost of the farmer coming to claim his buried fortune.
What are some other buried treasures you have heard of? Do you believe these tales could be true? Share in the comments below.