They say the money is still buried...(New Mexico)
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  1. #1
    Kentucky Kache

    They say the money is still buried...(New Mexico)

    Charles Kennedy
    This story is paraphrased from an article by Tom Hilton in, Nevermore Cimarron, Nevermore (Ft. Worth: Western Heritage Press, 1970, pp. 37-43).

    Charles Kennedy drifted into the Moreno Valley of Northern New Mexico around 1865. He chose an isolated area on the Taos Trail, at the foot of Palo Flechado Pass, to build a dilapidated cabin as a home for himself, his wife Rosa, and their 3 year old son.

    Since the trail was used mainly by lone cowboys and desperados it is uncertain how many of them may have disappeared without a trace. However, once gold was found in the area, the trail became well traveled by minors heading out to make their fortunes. It was at this time rumors started about lone travelers, last seen headed for the pass, never to be seen again.

    Then, during the winter of 1871, a prominent citizen of Taos headed down the trail to the Moreno Valley. He was never heard from again. An investigation was started and the Taos man's belongings, horses, and pack mules were found on the property of Charles Kennedy.

    Kennedy explained this by saying he found the animals wandering alone and assumed the Apaches had killed or abducted the owner. The searchers found this very suspicious because, while it was true there were often Indian attacks in the area, the Apaches were known to love mule meat. They found it strange that they would have abducted or killed the man and not taken his animals. But, with no concrete proof, the men headed back to town.

    A few weeks later a stranger who had stopped at a nearby spring to drink some water noticed Kennedy's shack. He decided to have a closer look. As he approached he saw Kennedy's small son out front and asked him, "What's that smell, your pappy a trapper?" The boy replied that his pappy was not a trapper, that the smell was the Indian his dad had killed earlier (around the same time the prominent Taos man would have been traveling in the area) and hadn't had time to chop up and burn yet.

    Unfortunately, Charles was around the corner and overheard the conversation between his son and the man. He quickly rounded the corner, shot the man in the head, then grabbed his son by the heels and slammed him up against the rock chimney several times until his head was nothing but a lifeless bloody pulp.

    Charles then proceeded to get falling down drunk. When he finally passed out, his wife ran from the cabin and traipsed 15 miles to the nearest town, Elizabethtown. Frantic, half frozen, and babbling incoherently, she burst into Herberger's Saloon where Clay Allison and David Crockett (nephew of frontiersman Davey Crockett) were having a drink.

    She told them what had happened, told them that there were the bones of twenty men buried on their property, and told them that Kennedy had killed their other two children before moving to the area.

    The men rode off into the night and hauled Charles Kennedy, and a bag of blackened bones, back to E-Town. The next day a trial was held but the jury could not reach a decision so a mistrial was called (many said a good deal of money exchanged hands to insure a quick trial and a hung jury).

    Charles was taken to the jail to await another trial. That night the men of the town, led by Clay Allison, had a lynching party with Kennedy the guest of honor. Allison then took Charles' head off with the blade of a long knife, threw it in a burlap bag, and headed off with Crockett to Cimarron.

    When they arrived in Cimarron they took the head to Lambert's Saloon . Allison tried to convince Henry Lambert to hang the head over the door of the Saloon but Lambert refused. He was willing to compromise, however, and the head was secured to a pike pole and stuck at the southwest corner of the building where it resided for over a year.

    Kennedy is said to have murdered between 15 - 100 men before he was discovered. He always took their belongings, but he was never known to spend much money. Most likely he buried the money, waiting for a time when he could spend it without suspicion - a time which never came for him. They say the money is still buried somewhere near the rubble of his shack, deep in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

    There are old men and women who remember tales told of this place. They say that of a night, when wind rustles a thousand leaves and the moon becomes hidden behind scudding clouds, the screams of the dying can be heard. That the smell of burning flesh permeates all things, and walking in search is a body that has no head.

  2. #2
    Apr 2004
    Tesoro Sand Shark, Homebuilt pulse loop
    1491 times

    Re: They say the money is still buried...(New Mexico)

    ugh...creepy :P

  3. #3
    Jul 2005
    West Virginia
    23 times

    Re: They say the money is still buried...(New Mexico)

    Perhaps he spent the money on whiskey and sporting ladies. Good luck in your search.
    Just because it did not work does not mean it was not a good plan!



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