State Treasure - Kentucky

By Anthony M. Belli
From page 27 of the October, 2010 issue of Lost Treasure
Copyright © 2010 Lost Treasure, Inc. all rights reserved

Spring Creek
Mystery Silver Mine
CLAY COUNTY – Could a long abandoned silver mine discovered by treasure hunters in 1900 be the fabled lost mine of Englishman Jonathan Swift? That was the question posed to the readers of Treasure World magazine in 1970 in a letter written by Raymond Dellh of Converse, Indiana.
Dellh told of a mysterious mine discovered by his father, grandfather and uncle, 70 years after-the-fact, where ore samples from the mine assayed at 70% silver with some nickel.
According to Dellh, his father told him that a number of human skeletons were found inside the abandoned mine when they first discovered it and recovered the ore samples that were assayed later.
Though the skeletons did disturb the three Dellh men, they decided to make a second trip to the mine. It was on their second trip that the three discovered they were being followed. This caused them to avoid the mine and to return home empty handed; it would also be their last trip to visit the old mine.
Raymond explained that a Knoxville man had considered re-opening the mine with his father and possibly uncle as partners. But he died shortly after the Dellh men had returned from their second trip, which killed the deal.
Raymond’s father had a map to the mine, which was lost when he later moved to Virginia. But Raymond’s description and location is good enough for any treasure hunter to begin a search.
Raymond described the mine as being “in Clay County, on Spring Creek off of Red Bird River.” According to his letter, Raymond had thought about trying to search for the old mine himself, but states a number of personal issues prevented him from doing so.
As far as anyone knows, Raymond never did get the opportunity to return to southeastern Kentucky to look for the abandoned mine found by his father 70 years earlier.
The confluence of Spring Creek and the Red Bird River mentioned in Raymond’s letter can be found on the county line separating Clay and Leslie counties on State Highway 66 at Lower Spring Creek Road. By following Lower Spring Creek Road roughly 2.6/10ths of a mile you should come to a driveway leading to a cemetery. It is in this vicinity where the Dellh men discovered the old mine.

Swift Cache Site Said to
Hold $56,000 in Silver Crowns
WOLFE COUNTY – In 1976, Joseph S. Haas, Jr., of New Hampshire wrote a letter to the staff of Lost Treasure magazine regarding the Jonathan Swift treasure. In his letter Haas briefly mentions two Indiana treasure leads that he read in the book, ‘Directory of Buried or Sunken Treasures and Lost Mines of the United States,’ by Thomas Penfield (1971.)
Haas then provided the following Kentucky lead. He claims landmarks identified as, “Buffalo Rock, the Natural (or Rock) Bridge, Half Moon Cliff, and the Lighthouse,” are four sites that Swift mentions in his journal as being cache sites where he buried, $32,000, $15,000, $6,000, and $3,000 respectively. The total value of all four caches is $56,000; all are reported to be British silver crowns.
Haas adds that all four “landmarks have been located” in the vicinity of Campton, but none of the treasure. So far as is known, to date none of these four caches has been found.

The Anglin Treasure
CARTER COUNTY – The Anglin treasure is a gold specie cache of unknown face value that was buried during the summer of 1861 in Carter County, Kentucky. It is believed that there’s a high probability that this cache is still there, since there are no reports of it having been recovered.
Three bachelor brothers, John, Bill and Adrian Anglin, lived and worked their farm for years leading up to the Civil War in the Pactolus area, located about 2.5 miles north of Greyson. It was well known locally that the brothers were successful and had money. They all lived in one large log house and were considered by most to be very frugal with their money.
The Anglin Farm produced a corn crop and also sold cattle and hogs. Over time each of the brothers amassed a small fortune for the times. Apparently the brothers worked well together, but, for reasons unknown, did not trust each other when it came to money. Each kept their own personal fortune hidden either inside the home, or buried somewhere on the farm, but separate from the others.
The oldest brother, Bill, had a regular practice of taking the money he earned from sales to a country store in Old-town, Kentucky, west of Greyson, where he had it converted to gold coins. He did this strictly on Sundays for two reasons. First he didn’t have to take time away from the farm during the week. And second, Bill always converted his money when people were in church, that way people wouldn’t see him doing so, or see how much money he had. This practice went on for years before the Civil War.
As soon as word reached the Little Sandy Valley in the summer of 1861 that war had erupted, Bill realized that soldiers would soon pass through the area plundering everything they could. He retrieved his small fortune from the house and buried it outside somewhere on the farm. According to his brothers, Bill left alone on foot and returned about an hour later.
Bill told no one where his cache was buried and is said to have never visited the site again. After the war ended, Bill, because of paralysis, was unable to recover his cache. Not trusting his brothers, he refused to enlist their help or tell them where he’d buried it. His brothers did search the farm for his gold, but without success. It was never found.
A search of property deeds in the county archives for the Anglin farm should help pin down a search area.

The Caccoma Treasure
HART COUNTY – There is a well-known legend told around Horse Cave about a man named Anthony Caccoma. According to the story, Caccoma was a gambler who died in 1940. In his diary he recorded burying a number of caches around the town of Horse Cave.
After his death, only one such cache was found consisting of $3,200 buried east of town around the foundation of an old house.
I have no further details on Caccoma or his connection to Horse Cave, Kentucky, so local research will be necessary.

Dellh, Raymond, “Letters,” September 1970, Treasure World, p. 6
Letter from Joseph S. Haas, Jr. appeared in Lost Treasure, June 1976, p. 8
Henson, Michael Paul, America’s Lost Treasures, 1984, South Bend, Indiana, Jayco Publishing Company, p. 164
Marx, Robert F., Buried Treasures You Can Find, 1993, Dallas, Texas, Ram Publishing Company, p. 182.


Brett's picture

lost treasure in Kentucky

I hope this is not a joke. I am disabled and have time to do research. Winter is closing in, so any field research will have to wait. Would enjoy the thrill of the chase for a fair piece of the find. Thanks, Brett P.S. I live in Anderson county

Joseph S. Haas's picture

The Swift Cache Sites of Campton, Kentucky.

Thank you Anthony for reminding me of these four buried treasure sites. To dig out these papers from the box in my basement, to get the modern day equipment and go IN SEARCH OF...these British silver crowns worth $56,000, to where my mother said our ancestors traveled through Kentucky on their way to West Texas the year before Daniel Boone. "When" found by me, or to grubstake a local, as I still live here in New Hampshire, to be sure to send you a reminder percentage. "Happy Trails", -- Joe

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