Lost Treasure Of Gold in Central Ohio From The French & Indian War is Worth $25,000
AARRGH! Hoist the Sails and Load the Boat... We be Headed to... Ohio?
Yep. Awful Pirate impression. But that quest for treasure is still real, as there's actually lost, buried gold in the State of Ohio worth more than $25,000 from before the Revolutionary War. So how has no one found it in almost 250 years?
What's hilarious about this particular treasure is, locals around Minerva, Ohio have actually found ALL of the clues left behind by the French Army... yet they still can't find this $25,000 gold stockpile in the woods.
It's a pretty crazy story actually.
During the French & Indian War, French Soldiers were defending Fort Duquesne from British troops in what is now modern-day Pittsburgh. But things weren't going well at that particular time. British Troops were inching closer to the Fort, which happened to contain the payroll for all of the French Soldiers.
The French knew the British were coming, and that they were outmatched. They also knew that gold, if captured, would not only crush the spirits of unpaid French soldiers but significantly aid the British forces.
So, 10 men packed the gold up onto mules and headed west to try and hide it.
Hiding the Gold
The French realized they wouldn't be able to outrun the British Forces chasing behind them. They were also heavily outnumbered, so they had to hide the gold in a way that only they would know where it was. Once they were free from the British, they could then return, and gather the gold again.
So, just east of what is now Minerva, Ohio, the French Soldiers unpacked all of the gold, and buried it, leaving clues only they could understand.
One of the clues was an odd-shaped rock, forced into the fork of a tree. Another was a deer carved into another tree, and finally, the gold would be buried 600 steps to the north of where the men buried all of their shovels, underneath another fallen tree.
The gold was successfully hidden, but sadly the British did attack and killed or captured all but two of the men. Those two remaining men never spoke of the gold, for fear of being captured.
Finding the Clues
The gold would remain unfound for decades, nearly lost and forgotten since the villagers of Minerva had no idea that these French Soldiers had even buried the gold outside of the town.
Then, one day, a man showed up in the town with a list of the clues, saying his uncle was one of the two soldiers who had escaped and left these clues to find the missing gold of the French Army.
After years of digging, he never found anything, but now all of the villagers of Minerva knew the clues, and about the gold. So over the next few decades, they slowly began searching for this gold as well.
They eventually found all of the clues - One man was chopping down a tree when a strange rock fell from one of the forks above his head - Another man found what was left of the shovels in the ground - and finally, a storm blew the bark off of a tree in the area, that exposed the carved deer in its side.
Locals searched frantically every time a new clue was found, but never uncovered the gold.
Where is the Gold?
It's possible that someone found the gold without actually needing the clues, and took it. It's also possible one of the captured French soldiers gave up the clues to the British.
But no one has ever claimed to have found $25,000 worth of gold in the woods - and I think it would be pretty obvious if someone had suddenly come into American Revolutionary-era French Gold.
So to this day, the gold is still listed as unfound, and could still be in the woods, undiscovered. Seems like a fun weekend to go dig holes in Ohio for buried treasure, yeah?