Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Kansas Treasure Caches

(Kansas county map.)

Like most states, Kansas has its share of tales of lost treasure caches and troves. Although the Sunflower State has even produced a Jesse James and Knights of the Golden Circle cache or two, most of the time Kansas tends to disappear off the radar screen of most treasure hunters.

Perhaps the following lost caches will change this fact:

Diamond Springs Robbery Caches

Legend has it that numerous outlaw caches are buried in the immediate environs of Diamond Springs in Marion County. This area is cut by numerous deep ravines that made ideal locations for robbers to hide out after hitting immigrant wagons, stagecoaches, or even the occasional solitary traveler or two.

Treasure Hunting

A number of robberies and depredations took place just a few miles east of Diamond Springs and caches consisting of gold and silver coins still remain buried there. Additionally, if you're an avid coin or artifact hunter, try swinging your metal detector over the ground of one of the many abandoned homesteads and old settlements in the area...just don't trespass.

Half a Million in Gold near Lyons

Over $7,000 face value in U.S. type gold coins may be buried near the old Cow Creek Crossing west of Lyons, Kansas. At today's gold prices this cache is probably worth over half a million dollars or more. This cache represents the remnants of a larger amount of gold and silver specie carried by one Antonio Chavez, who was waylaid and eventually killed by a band of gunmen at this location.

Larkin Skaggs' Gold Coins

After William Quantrill's murderous raid on Lawrence, Kansas in August 1863 it's estimated that more than $3,000,000 in gold and silver coin, jewelry, silverware, greenbacks, and other "goodies" were carried off by Quantrill's Confederate partisan rangers. Although much of this trove made it back to Missouri, some of it did not.

 (The sacking of Lawrence, Kansas by Quantrill's Raiders.)

Somewhere just southeast of Lawrence, over $500 in U.S. gold type coin was hurriedly buried by one of Quantrill's "bushwhackers" named Larkin Skaggs. During the Lawrence raid, Skaggs robbed (and more than likely killed) one George Burt, a Lawrence businessman.

Research May Pay Off Handsomely

After the raid, Skaggs rode off to the southeast while the rest of Quantrill's men headed northeast into Missouri. This proved to be Skaggs' undoing when the hapless "bushwhacker" was chased down by a small group of Kansans from a neighboring community and dealt immediate justice. However, Burt's gold was not on Skagg's person or in his possessions.

Strapworks.com - any strap, any length, any color!

Undoubtedly, many such small caches or lost or dropped plunder exist around the Lawrence, Kansas area as well as along the route that Quantrill's men took back into Missouri. A bit of research is required, but it may pay off handsomely in the end.

Good hunting out there.

If you liked this post, you may want to read: "'Bushwhacker' Caches in Missouri"

(c)  Jim Rocha (J.R.)  2011

Questions? E-mail me at jr872vt90@yahoo.com