Apr 29, 2009, 07:14 PM
Gypsyheart~ Queen of Rust
Lampasas River ...Lost Gold
LOST GOLD AT LAMPASAS RIVER
The late 1870's were difficult financial times for the Turnbo family with the loss of Andrew Jackson. Stories have circulated that there may have been a fortune in gold on their homeplace; had they only been able to find it, they would have become wealthy.
In March 1964, author Harry Christmas published a story in Real West Magazine that tells of this lost fortune. The story as written talks of the Turnbo homeplace.
Christmas wrote: "Just halfway between Waco and Austin, Texas, is the town of Belton. Nearby flow the Leon and Lampasas Rivers, through the Turnbo neighborhood, as it was called in the 1860's near Youngsport. In that vicinity, in the late 1870's, there had been traditions of buried gold there and these stories drew great attention to the region. But always from outsiders, rarely did those folks living nearby pay any attention to the tales of buried treasure, regarding them as foolish stories without basis or fact."
"One day three Mexican marineos came to the region. When questioned, they pleasantly passed off most of the questions put to them. They revealed only one thing: they were searching for buried gold, a large, stone jar of the treasure and three metal chests of gold."
"The residents watched the searchers. For ten days the marineros paced off distances, checked their compass and hacked holes in the ground. Then they left, as suddenly and as secretly as they came. But they found no gold, the settlers saw to that as they peered through the brush at them day after day, night after night, watching them at their campfires."
"A decade passed, then another. The residents who had watched them tried to forget about the gold. One day young Urvin decided to visit his father at Bertram. In traveling from the Turnbo’s where he was employed at the time, young Urvin cut across the McBride settlement, crossing the Lampasas River. After crossing the river, he sat down upon a 'rock' to wring out his socks which were wet from the river crossing."
"The place upon which he had sat down appeared strange to him, round on top, as though man-made. He examined it. It was the top portion of an old stone jar. Prying loose the lid he peered within. It was filled to the brim with gold coins of many sizes and descriptions, some dating back to 1671. Urvin became sly, afraid for his great wealth, and he took a pocketful of the gold coins and covered the jar with earth and brush."
"That evening, while at his father's house, a neighbor named John Harte of near Florence who was visiting in the neighborhood discovered Urvin counting and inspecting the coins. Urvin told Harte that he had won the gold playing poker. But Harte disbelieved him, and he told a Mr. Stanley of his disbelief. Soon, many in the county area knew that young Urvin had a pocketful of gold coins, and the talk grew."
"Young Urvin and a brother, who was at his father's home at that time, returned to the Jar, leading a saddle horse with two morrals, or nose bags, thrown over the back of the saddle. These they filled halfway with the remaining gold coins then covered the Jar again with earth and brush. When they returned to Bertram, they told a Eugene Gahn and a man named McDonald of their find. These men spread the story."
"At Belton, the story did not go far until it reached the ears of Moses Whitsitt. He went immediately to the Belton Journal, telling the editor that young Urvin was wanted for theft. He told that a merchant named Atkinson of Florence, who had been a rare coin collector, was robbed of his collection. He further made the claim that young Urvin's alias was Maxwell."
How did this matter turn out? Mr. Christmas says he has no Idea. The story reached him while he was researching other fields. This much may be added to aid those who do search for buried treasure. And it will assure them of the fundamental reasons to search for the two mariners' chests containing the cargo of gold the Mexican marineros sought in the long ago. ~
In the Georgetown Sun. Thursday, August 13, 1885, appeared a letter from Holland, Texas. It was in response to an article, which had appeared earlier in The Sun, on Thursday, July 28, 1885, which described the discovery of the gold coins by Urvin.
I found $11,300.00 in old Spanish coin and have it now In U. S. currency. As to my name It Is A. C. Urvin. I have both father and mother and two brothers to prove my connections...
I am now living in the neighborhood of Holland with G. T. Smith. I am no thief or robber. I will be In Belton this week and see you. I can prove as good a character, from my childhood down to this time, as any man In Texas.
A. C. Urvin "But what about the seamen's chests and the gold cargemento de navio? Did Urvin return and make the greater discovery, one of which he was most certainly unaware when he found the original stone Jar and its treasure? Or, did the stories of the metal chests of gold start after Urvin's Initial discovery of Spanish Sold coins?"
"These questions we must leave to those who study the matter further and pursue the treasure trail. They are only the most sketchy, fundamental facts about the lost gold Jar on the Lampasas. They are all that is known to this writer. The two newspaper stories are the only factual material, the balance of the story was gleaned from old timers who contributed bits of fancy and folklore.
" (From: Harry E. Christmas, "Real West Magazine", Editor: Philip R. Rand, Volume VII, No. 34 (March, 1964), pp. 17, 56.)
I go a great distance,while some are considering whether they will start today or tomorrow
Apr 29, 2009 07:14 PM
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