Friday, December 31, 2010

$2,000,000 in James Boys Loot? (Part 1)


$2,000,000 in James Boys Loot?

There's a lost treasure tale concerning Jesse and Frank James that's been circulating now for at least as long as 80 plus years, if not longer. The real eye opener on this one is not so much that the James Boys were supposedly involved but that the trove that they buried and subsequently never recovered contains at least $2,000,000 in stolen "goodies."

Yep, you heard right...two million dollars. The only other James Boys cache I know of that approximates this high-dollar amount is one that is ostensibly buried here in New Mexico where I live. But that's another story entirely. By the way, don't bother looking for the latter trove...I already recovered it (yep, and I was once the King of Spain too!).

As the famed treasure yarn author J. Frank Dobie once wrote, "The James gang robbed not to live; they lived to rob, and they robbed on a magnificent scale." Dobie is correct in this regard, but whether the "magnificent scale" he mentions includes the heist of a cool $2,000,000 by the James Boys is open to debate. You see, there is nothing to verify this legend in the way of hard facts.

The Boys Just Got Lucky

Exactly how, where, and when Frank and Jesse pulled off a $2,000,000 robbery is lost in the fog of time and in the telling of this tale over the years. There are those who believe this vast amount of money was accumulated over time in numerous small bank and train robberies.

Then there are others who say that the James Boys (and their gang) intercepted a Mexican transport train on its way to Saint Louis, Missouri. In the latter case the James gang is said to have had no prior intelligence or knowledge that the Mexicans were carrying this much in gold, silver, and other valuables...the boys just got lucky.

Are There Other Parts to this Treasure Puzzle?

After they pulled off the heist, the James Boys (all by their lonesomes) are said to have buried their ill-gotten gains somewhere in or near southwestern Oklahoma's Wichita Mountains. More specifically, this trove is said to be stashed along the road or highway leading from Fort Sill northeast to the Keeche Hills.

In the old days, this sort of waybill to a buried cache might have made sense. But in today's world with private land ownership and extensive land development, and the growth of the area mentioned in general, these directions to the possible location of this treasure trove leave much to be desired.

The most pertinent question that needs to asked here is, "How could Frank and Jesse bury $2,000,000 in stolen loot and never recover it?" Are there other parts to this treasure puzzle? Or, can we throw in the proverbial kitchen sink and propose the theory that this stash was meant as a Knights of the Golden Circle (KGC) repository?

There's more to come so stay tuned. Until then, good hunting to you.
(c) J.R. 2010
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