are taken from James M. Deem's How to Hunt Buried Treasure
Many treasure hunters think
alike, and spots that once held treasure have been picked apart by greedy
To find such attractive treasure, you must think creatively and try to put yourself in the past. You
must begin to think as if you were at the scene when the treasure was lost or
hidden. By doing this, you can analyze the situation with a freshness that may
lead you right to the valuables.
Take the case of the treasure still located
on the south side of the Red River on the Texas-Oklahoma border. In 1892, Lewis
Franklin Palmore was appointed the first federal marshal in Indian Territory,
the area that is now Oklahoma. One of his first encounters with criminals
occurred two years later. Four men robbed the First National Bank in Bowie,
Texas, and headed north, stopping for the night on the south bank of the flooded
That night Palmore received a telegram from
the city marshal of Bowie informing him that the robbers were headed for Indian
Territory. Palmore realized that the robbers would have to ford the flooded
river at Rock Crossing. The next morning, when the robbers saw that a posse was
approaching from the south, they plunged into the river at Rock Crossing and
swam beside their horses. Palmore and two deputies waited on the other side and
arrested them. In their saddlebags, Palmore found $18,000 in paper money, which
had been divided evenly among them. Surprisingly, $10,000 in $20 gold pieces was
nowhere to be found.
The robbers were taken to Fort Smith,
Arkansas, where Judge Roy Parker conducted a trial and sentenced them to hang.
With nooses around their necks, the robbers were seated on their horses, waiting
for their execution. One of them leaned toward Palmore and told him that the
gold coins had been hidden near the robbers' final campsite, on the south bank
of the Red River. Although Palmore searched the area many times for the cache of
coins, he never found it. He passed the story on to his son, Frank, who searched
the site before metal detectors became popular.
Frank Palmore believes that to find the
coins the treasure tracker must visualize the way the flooded river was in 1894.
How high was the water? Where would the riverbanks have been? And where would
the robbers have camped? Palmore says that a tracker might get help from local
people who remember where Rock Crossing was. The coins will be found, Palmore
writes, "somewhere between the bridge on Highway 81 and the mouth of the
Palmore, Frank E. "Gold at Rock
Crossing." Treasure, October 1989, 49-51.
ŠJames M. Deem.
Originally published in How
to Hunt Buried Treasure (Boston: Houghton Mifflin,
1992). All rights