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  1. #1

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Okay everyone out there, where does one go to research stolen / lost army payrolls from the 1800's? I don't want to give away too much info for fear of being sniped. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

    Gold Seeker
    Research, research, research...

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  3. #2
    Thanks for playing. You lose.

    Aug 2006
    smAlbany, NY
    DFX
    1,280
    4 times

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Woah! I wouldn't have even said that much! Holy crap man. You trying to attract attention!? Stolen money is one thing. Stolen government money is another. I'd start with microfilm newspaper articles from when and where you think it was stolen...hide it well, they will be coming to look for it if they think it was theirs...even if they were not those that had it stolen from them. Sounds like an interesting find. If you ever feel like turing it in let us know more about it.
    Never underestimate the stupidity of people.

  4. #3

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Good point. Probably having my phone tapped as we speak...
    Research, research, research...

  5. #4

    Jan 2004
    LA (Lower Arkansas)
    38

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    A word of advice. (I know I'm going to catch it for this!) If the payroll is from the period after paper money was introduced and before the invention of plastic, It isn't there.
    Army's did not carry chest's of gold around enemy territory in the 1700's and 1800's any more than they do today. I wish they did, but they didn't. Chests of looted property are a different matter. Copper and silver are a maybe.
    Think about it. If you wouldn't carry a chest of money down the streets of New York or Atlanta in peacetime, Why would Cornwallis or Bobby Lee? Even George Washington and US Grant were paid with paper. Outside the weight of carrying hard currency, No country risked furnishing its enemy with the finances to defeat it. I truly wish it were otherwise. (Believe me, I wish it were.) Every state in the US has tales of lost payrolls and supposedly Napoleon left gold laying around Europe by the truckload.
    That said, don't let a naysayer steer you away if you have good information. But use common sense about investing your time and money.
    PLEASE prove me wrong.
    HH
    CPW

  6. #5

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by cpt_peewee
    A word of advice. (I know I'm going to catch it for this!) If the payroll is from the period after paper money was introduced and before the invention of plastic, It isn't there.
    Army's did not carry chest's of gold around enemy territory in the 1700's and 1800's any more than they do today. I wish they did, but they didn't. Chests of looted property are a different matter. Copper and silver are a maybe.
    Think about it. If you wouldn't carry a chest of money down the streets of New York or Atlanta in peacetime, Why would Cornwallis or Bobby Lee? Even George Washington and US Grant were paid with paper. Outside the weight of carrying hard currency, No country risked furnishing its enemy with the finances to defeat it. I truly wish it were otherwise. (Believe me, I wish it were.) Every state in the US has tales of lost payrolls and supposedly Napoleon left gold laying around Europe by the truckload.
    That said, don't let a naysayer steer you away if you have good information. But use common sense about investing your time and money.
    PLEASE prove me wrong.
    HH
    CPW
    No, you won't catch it -- at least not from me! I'm open to all points of view!!

    So, if I'm hearing you correctly, you're saying that the army didn't pay soldiers stationed at forts on the prairie in hard currency, but rather in paper? I'd like to hear more of your ideas...

    Gold Seeker
    Research, research, research...

  7. #6
    us
    Apr 2004
    Tesoro Sand Shark, Homebuilt pulse loop
    2,178
    41 times
    Shipwrecks

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    This is new to me. I've got records (not treasure books) of soldiers being paid with hard currency - in some cases it was foreign currency of a supporting country.

  8. #7

    Aug 2006
    Milton, Florida
    White's Surfmaster PI, Eagle Spectrum, Fisher 1235-X, 1280-X
    182

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    I have seen records of soldiers being paid in coin and I have read it was common for union civil war soldiers to be paid in silver half dollars and one dollar gold coins. I have seen several of those one dollar gold coins recovered. I have dug a couple seated half dollars at know camps myself along with a lot of one and two cent coins. To me if the soldiers were not paid, there would have been more of them desert. It is not like they were paid a great deal back then, one guys civil war record I read he was paid only four dollars a month.

    I also met a man that was buying a metal detector after purchasing property in the Richmond area. He was finding coins all over, after research it turns out, on his property there was a southern payroll station that had been blown up by northern soldiers. He found enough coins to send all he grand kids to college.

    When I was stationed in northern Virginia some of the guys would go to the national archives in Wash DC to do research. It was hard to get access to all material (you had to be qualified) but they were people you could pay to look things up for you. A friend paid a lady there to look up records of a guy who's dog tag he found.




  9. #8

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Tom
    I have seen records of soldiers being paid in coin and I have read it was common for union civil war soldiers to be paid in silver half dollars and one dollar gold coins. I have seen several of those one dollar gold coins recovered. I have dug a couple seated half dollars at know camps myself along with a lot of one and two cent coins. To me if the soldiers were not paid, there would have been more of them desert. It is not like they were paid a great deal back then, one guys civil war record I read he was paid only four dollars a month.

    I also met a man that was buying a metal detector after purchasing property in the Richmond area. He was finding coins all over, after research it turns out, on his property there was a southern payroll station that had been blown up by northern soldiers. He found enough coins to send all he grand kids to college.

    When I was stationed in northern Virginia some of the guys would go to the national archives in Wash DC to do research. It was hard to get access to all material (you had to be qualified) but they were people you could pay to look things up for you. A friend paid a lady there to look up records of a guy who's dog tag he found.
    Tom,

    I read that on their website, too. Do you happen to remember how much they charged? It probably will depend on how much research they have to do, huh? They should have records about payrolls to Nebraska, right? I just hope this doesn't end up to be a goose chase... But then again, maybe it wouldn't be so bad -- I've learned in my short time doing this to question everything and X doesn't always mark the spot. I'll keep y'all posted if/when we find it...

    Gold Seeker
    Research, research, research...

  10. #9
    treasurejack

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    I remember doing some research several years ago in regards to early explorations into Florida. After going through a lot of "first hand accounts" it was easy to see why so many thought there was gold in Florida. You'll find quotes made in regards to the native people of Florida that say things like, "and around his neck was a gold nuget the size of an acorn." But in these quotes it was later discovered that many of these early explorers used these "juiced" reports to secure future financing of their expeditions. And as for those who did report it just as they had seen it, well, they later came to realize that the gold they had seen among the Florida natives had actually come off of Spanish wrecks and other outside sources as well. Just something to keep in mind when you're doing your research, not everything you read took place just as it might be printed. (Even first hand accounts)

  11. #10
    Charter Member
    bo
    Jan 2006
    SoCal
    Modded SD2000 / XTerra70 / Fisher Gemini /
    3,810
    282 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by cpt_peewee
    A word of advice. (I know I'm going to catch it for this!) If the payroll is from the period after paper money was introduced and before the invention of plastic, It isn't there.
    Army's did not carry chest's of gold around enemy territory in the 1700's and 1800's any more than they do today. I wish they did, but they didn't. Chests of looted property are a different matter. Copper and silver are a maybe.
    Think about it. If you wouldn't carry a chest of money down the streets of New York or Atlanta in peacetime, Why would Cornwallis or Bobby Lee? Even George Washington and US Grant were paid with paper. Outside the weight of carrying hard currency, No country risked furnishing its enemy with the finances to defeat it. I truly wish it were otherwise. (Believe me, I wish it were.) Every state in the US has tales of lost payrolls and supposedly Napoleon left gold laying around Europe by the truckload.
    That said, don't let a naysayer steer you away if you have good information. But use common sense about investing your time and money.
    PLEASE prove me wrong.
    HH
    CPW
    Hey CPW,

    I'm not going to jump on you either, but what you stated was incorrect. I have several newspaper accounts of robberies(of the period of the mid and late 1800s), and there are some about Military Payroll robberies.

    You are correct in one aspect of what you said; during a time of war, the military is usually paid in government issued paper money, but during peacetime, they are usually paid in currency (coin or paper). Another way bullion, gold, and silver coin was MISTAKEN for Military Payrolls, was when the Military escorted civilian payrolls or gold shipments.

    During the Civil War, several times banks would move their gold and silver if there was a chance of the enemy taking that city. Sometimes they would bury it close by (if they were short on time), and sometimes they would just transfer it to a bank in another city.

    One of the several caches Frank Fish found was a stolen Army Payroll. I don't think THAT one of his stories ever made into a book (I don't have all his books).

    Best,

    Mike
    Check out 1ORO1.COM

  12. #11
    us
    Dec 2004
    South Florida
    70's Whites TM Amphibian, HH Pulse, Ace 250
    23,606
    744 times
    Beach and Shallow Water Hunting

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    The Army had to eat. I read that the Florida ranchers that sold cattle to the Confederate Army insisted on being paid in gold because they didnt trust Confederate paper money. I would imagine that paymasters carried of a combination of paper and gold.

  13. #12

    Aug 2006
    Milton, Florida
    White's Surfmaster PI, Eagle Spectrum, Fisher 1235-X, 1280-X
    182

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Gold seeker

    If I remember right, guys were paying a lady at the national archives $25 to copy a soldiers civil war record.
    Another interesting fact was, when a really good friend of mine had a dog tag researched, the lady must have made some record of his name and request. Because a short time later he was contacted by the family/descendants of the soldier of that dog tag, they wanted to buy it from him, he ended up trading it for some coins they their large collection.

    But what I am getting at, when you do research at the national archive they might make a record of it. Might be a good idea to have a family member or a very good friend use their name for the research there. Just to keep as many flags away from you as possible, in case you ever did find something. Once you start leaving a trail be real careful in hiding your tracks once the cache has been found.

  14. #13
    Thanks for playing. You lose.

    Aug 2006
    smAlbany, NY
    DFX
    1,280
    4 times

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Tom
    If I remember right, guys were paying a lady at the national archives $25 to copy a soldiers civil war record.
    That's a good scam. Right now the Nat'l Archives is charging over 30 bucks for a full Pension file and 15 or so for the service record. I need a few Pension and service files for my genealogy. You got a contact for us?
    Never underestimate the stupidity of people.

  15. #14

    Aug 2006
    Milton, Florida
    White's Surfmaster PI, Eagle Spectrum, Fisher 1235-X, 1280-X
    182

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    I will have to try and contact some of my friends that are still living there in northern Virginia. I was station in the Wash DC area but that was several years ago. I will see if I can get some contact numbers. I know the one guy that had it done really well. But that was 10 or 15 years ago, but I will give it a try.

    You know one of Whites service centers is in that area,Centerville Virginia. He is a good guy pretty sure his name is Bob. He is a old time relic hunter, I bet he may know a contact in the National Archive. I think he might be in the club Northern Virginia relic hunters or something like that. Someone in that club should know also. Seems like I saw a post on here of someone that was a member of that club.

    Just brain storming a little here..... I guess I should have kept a log of all those good people that I have run into in my travels.

  16. #15

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Hey Old Tom!

    Do you happen to have the contact names? I need to know if this is a "fact" or if it's just a story before going any further. Thanks!

    Gold Seeker
    Research, research, research...

  17. #16
    ie
    Jan 2007
    385
    3 times

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Gold Seeker:

    About 18th/19th century soldiers not getting paid in gold or silver - I think that is incorrect. I've been digging into some archival material and the primary sources definitely indicate that some military units carried specie, even if they were going in harm's way. I guess it just depends upon the unit and the circumstances. While I don't doubt soldiers were paid in paper currency or script, there is a flip side.

    Starsplitter

  18. #17
    us
    "The difference between genius and stupidity is genius has its limits."~Albert Einstein

    Jan 2007
    Tesoro Bandido II and DeLeon. also a Detector Pro Headhunter Diver, and a Garrett BFO called The Hunter & a Garrett Ace 250.
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    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Skrimpy
    Quote Originally Posted by Old Tom
    If I remember right, guys were paying a lady at the national archives $25 to copy a soldiers civil war record.
    That's a good scam. Right now the Nat'l Archives is charging over 30 bucks for a full Pension file and 15 or so for the service record. I need a few Pension and service files for my genealogy. You got a contact for us?
    Geneology is one of MY other interests. Ancestry.com has all of those records available for subscribers. Sub rates are $29.95 a month or less if you pay for a year in lump sum. It's my opinion that THers should also be hobby geneologists because researching treasure stories is exactly the same as researching your family tree. And there's no better " cover " for a THer than that of a Geneologist. The absolutely WORST thing you can do is mention the " T " word or the phrase " relic hunting " to any librarian or couthouse records clerk. Being a geneologist is respectable and is the fastest growing hobby interest in the world. Take advantage and get access to some private records that you couldn't get to otherwise.

    "Dobie created the HUNGER............Von Mueller said, EAT". comment by HELM Associates on the dedication page of their book, Treaasure Lead Generation.

  19. #18

    Aug 2006
    Omaha, Nebraska
    MXT
    74

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Shortstack
    Quote Originally Posted by Skrimpy
    Quote Originally Posted by Old Tom
    If I remember right, guys were paying a lady at the national archives $25 to copy a soldiers civil war record.
    That's a good scam. Right now the Nat'l Archives is charging over 30 bucks for a full Pension file and 15 or so for the service record. I need a few Pension and service files for my genealogy. You got a contact for us?
    Geneology is one of MY other interests. Ancestry.com has all of those records available for subscribers. Sub rates are $29.95 a month or less if you pay for a year in lump sum. It's my opinion that THers should also be hobby geneologists because researching treasure stories is exactly the same as researching your family tree. And there's no better " cover " for a THer than that of a Geneologist. The absolutely WORST thing you can do is mention the " T " word or the phrase " relic hunting " to any librarian or couthouse records clerk. Being a geneologist is respectable and is the fastest growing hobby interest in the world. Take advantage and get access to some private records that you couldn't get to otherwise.

    Excellent advice, Shortstack! Interesting way of looking at it, but in reality, that is basically what we are doing! Thanks!
    Research, research, research...

  20. #19
    ie
    Jan 2007
    385
    3 times

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Shortstack:

    Interesting... with certain exceptions, I have covered it by saying I was researching for a book. Geneology is a great idea.

    Starsplitter

  21. #20
    Thanks for playing. You lose.

    Aug 2006
    smAlbany, NY
    DFX
    1,280
    4 times

    Re: Lost Army Payrolls -- Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Shortstack
    ....Ancestry.com has all of those records available for subscribers. Sub rates are $29.95 a month or less if you pay for a year in lump sum. It's my opinion that THers should also be hobby geneologists because researching treasure stories is exactly the same as researching your family tree. And there's no better " cover " for a THer than that of a Geneologist. The absolutely WORST thing you can do is mention the " T " word or the phrase " relic hunting " to any librarian or couthouse records clerk. Being a geneologist is respectable and is the fastest growing hobby interest in the world. Take advantage and get access to some private records that you couldn't get to otherwise.
    I second everything you say here. Doing the genealogy gives you certain research skills that can be INVALUABLE to THing. 1st learning to research a family tree gives you many more or novel sources to research. I don't know of anyone else that would think of reading old newspapers cover to cover to find the parks or pictures not listed on old maps. I've found two turn of the century parks this way but haven't been able to locate any sweet spots in them. 2nd it gives you the cover of saying that you are inteseted in genealogy and history to clerks, librarians, and historians...I've had a few look at me funny when they asked my why I was interested in an out of print paper looking for pictures...I said "dunno, just interested in the local history, I guess". I had a hard time not laughing at her though. 3rd, and I like this one, which I do not judge if you do or do not attempt to return class rings, but it teaches you how to use the SSDI, Census, Obituaries and phonebook in combination to track down individuals related to those you are researching...you should here some of the responses I get when I basically tell people I know about their family than they do...and that I am related to them. "How did you find me?", "How did you know that?", "We never told anyone that!", and my personal favorite "Click..dialtone". The US Census if you think about it could be a huge help in conjuction with property or beers maps at locating things like taverns, hotels etc, which are phenomenal places to detect and bottle hunt. I can't remember the year but there was a point in the 1800s when "Occupation" was added to the Census information being taken...then get a map of the town and look for a name. Bingo! You have a residence and possibly the site of the old tavern. Just some things to think about....
    Never underestimate the stupidity of people.

 

 
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