Jun 09, 2008, 08:01 PM
Gypsyheart~ Queen of Rust
Jacob Bluebaugh's Hidden Gold
Frederick County, Maryland, deed records show that on OCT 23, 1753, Conrad Hagmire conveyed some land by deed to Jacob Bromback (Deed Book E, page 293). We might suppose this Jacob was aged 20 years or more when he obtained this land which would place his birth before 1734. On MAR 22, 1773, Jacob Blueback or Bluebauch was petitioning for title to some land in Frederick County, Maryland, called Weddings Choice which he was "seized in fee of" (Deed Book P, page 680). Was this the same Jacob who was in Washington County, Virginia, in 1786? Two deed records in Frederick County, Maryland, are for a Rudey, Rudy, or Rudolph Bruback (probably a corrupted spelling of Bluebaugh). On OCT 5, 1759, Edward Diggs and Ralph Taney conveyed land to Rudey and on MAR 20, 1765, Rudy or Rudolph Bruback conveyed land to Andrew Hull (Deed Book 5, page 836) and (Deed Book J, page 1076) respectively. The 1790 Maryland Census shows some of the family still there. Benjamin Bluback was a family head in Frederick County with himself aged 16 years and up (born prior to 1775), a free white male under 16 (born 1775-1790), 2 free white females, and 1 slave.
What was the Jacob Bluebaugh of Lee County, Virginia, like? According to family tradition, he was married twice. He and his first wife (name unknown) were the parents of a girl named Mary. Perhaps she was the only child of his first marriage. After Jacob's wife's death, he married again, this time to Esther or Hester. Census records of 1830 and 1860 and a deed show "Esther." However, the step-mother of Mary Bluebaugh was "Old Granny Hettie" according to Mary's granddaughter, Elizabeth Flanary (1840-1930) who married Abraham Pennington.2 The deed showing Jacob's wife as Esther also mentions their daughter, Esther A., but the marriage record for this daughter shows "Hester A." Apparently, Esther, Hester, and "Hettie" were used interchangeably.
We can surmise from the stories handed down both through Bluebaugh descendants and descendants of their neighbors that Esther was quite overbearing and domineering and that Jacob was a "henpecked husband" and perhaps a bit eccentric. There is even a hint of Esther's personality in the name "Old Granny Hettie." Her name was remembered in a handed down story 3 that Hettie Bluebaugh hit her husband with a cornpone. He was so very meek and humble that he said, "Honey, what made you hit me so hard?" Also, there is the story, learned from a different source, 4 that one time Jacob Bluebaugh's second wife had him outside and was about to chop off his head with an axe because he wouldn't tell her where he had buried his gold. Luckily, so the story goes, a neighbor - thought to be a Flanary - happened by at the right moment and saved Jacob from the fate of the axe.
The story that Jacob Bluebaugh had gold was told and retold throughout the neighborhood. Apparently he wouldn't give up the secret as to where he had hidden it even to his second wife under her threats of death. Where had he obtained so much gold that he had to hide it? Probably Jacob brought considerable wealth with him when he came to southwest Virginia as he acquired several acres of land. Perhaps he had gold left after making his land purchases and buried it somewhere on his farm.
Some say that he buried his gold in his first wife's grave.5 Others say he buried his gold by a spring flowing east, 6 but who could say which spring? Likely, Jacob owned many springs emitting their waters toward the sunrise. People even had ideas as the size and nature of the gold - some said it was a peck pot of gold coins.7
1Annals of Southwest Virginia, 1769-1800, by Lewis Preston Summers, Abingdon, Va., 1929, page 1786.
2Copied by D. L. Osborn in JUL 1958 from notes of Mrs. Golden (Nee Flanary) Bondurant, Dryden, Virginia, as dictated to her by her grandmother, Elizabeth.
3Interview AUG 12, 1960 by D. L. Osborn with Mrs. Clarence Earl Bramwell (nee Iva Marie Orr), Stockton, California.
4Interview in 1961 by D. L. Osborn with Mrs. Charles Blair (nee Emily Hobbs), near Dryden, Virginia.
5Interview with Mrs. Charles Blair, 1961.
6Interview in 1961 by D. L. Osborn with Mrs. Clyde H. Bishop (nee Sada Gilbert), Dryden, Virginia.
7Interview JUN 3, 1961 by D. L. Osborn with Ballard Parsons (born 1880, son of John Morgan Parsons), Dryden, Virginia.
Many have searched for the treasure. Probably "Old Granny Hettie" herself looked around for it when Jacob was away visiting the neighbors or had slipped off to get some lead ore to make some bullets. Hettie must have searched frantically after Jacob died for then she had no fear he would come home and find her digging. Holes were dug all around on the old Bluebaugh farm by many different people. There is a tradition 8 that one woman named Creech (from the near by Johnson farm - formerly known as the Bailey farm) searched and thought about the Bluebaugh gold so much that she went crazy and her family would have to lock her in a closet under or behind the stairs when she got uncontrollably violent.
On his deathbed, Jacob supposedly attempted to tell those around him his secret, but he was too weak and feeble in his last few minutes and couldn't make them understand where he had buried his gold. Some thought he mentioned something about a popular tree. He tried to tell them, but he slipped into death still holding his secret. 9
Even within this decade, Jacob's great-great-great-great-grandson and some of his cousins searched for the legendary Bluebaugh treasure using the electronic metal detector. Near one stream was buried a pan lid probably of relatively recent vintage. By a little dry ditch (likely a spring in wet weather or was in Jacob's time) and by a tree (one too young to have been there when Jacob lived), the electronic apparatus registered a signal of something metallic. Excavation was immediately commenced, but was somewhat hampered when solid rock was reached. Had a rock slide come down the steep bank sometime in the intervening decades and buried still farther down Jacob's secreted pot of yellow metal? Not to be deterred, a little help from explosives got them down a little ways more. Probably too much has already been revealed. Was something found? That's another secret!
I go a great distance,while some are considering whether they will start today or tomorrow
Jun 09, 2008, 09:38 PM
Seeker of lost treasure's
Re: Jacob Bluebaugh's Hidden Gold
Interesting story, You are very good @ your research.
Sometime's there's not a right way, or a wrong way.
Sometime's there's only one way.
Where there is no economy, people will create one.
No one rule fit's all
'' 17 Tons of Gold in New Mexico " Thread started in 2005.
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