It's time---East Texas subject matter

Doubloony

Jr. Member
Apr 8, 2021
34
57
East Texas
Detector(s) used
Tesoro Cibola, Tesoro Compadre
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I have sat here for a few years, usually just reading about other leads and enjoying the stories, wondering when or if I would ever reveal what, I, myself, have kept under my hat since I was very young. I think it may be time to do so, because I'm noticing how fast the years are flying by, and at this point, if I don't, it will probably never be heard of from anyone if something were to happen to me, because as far as I know, I don't know of anyone else that knows about it. I'll start by saying that this is concerning a 'chest' or as I was told, a 'strongbox', but it could be either, of gold bullion or coin, located in or beside a creek not far from my own home. The area is between Center, TX and Shelbyville, TX, but closer to Center, off of the south side of the highway that connects the two. This general area is, oddly enough, the site of a few battles that happened during the Regulator and Moderator war, but that has little to do with the current subject, because as far as I know, there was no gold involved in that, and few involved in that had any gold to begin with, most being horse thieves at best. It is my belief, rather, that the 'box' in question relates to the Civil War. The route for Texas troops going to Mansfield, LA is very close by, and they marched from both Shelbyville and Center, joining together on the main wagon road that today cuts through the woods, closely touching a portion of the Sabine National Forest, and is known by few today. The current highway 7 to Logansport, LA would give one the general idea of its trajectory, and that is where they crossed the river into Louisiana, making their way to the first engagement at the now famous battle.
I will here, back up, and explain how I first heard of this gold. I was probably no more than 6 or 7 at the time, and repeatedly heard of the time when my great grandfather had to keep treasure hunters off his land by the creek, due to them leaving large holes from their diggings. Obviously, they would do it while not being seen. I can only surmise that my grandfather was somewhat of a skeptic at the time, as it was on his own land, and he surely had the means of searching himself but never did. One must take into account the attitude of most in those days, as he had been a security guard for the Santa Fe railroad, and past retirement, was up in age by then and probably did not feel like hearing of such 'tall tales'. Unfortunately, I was too young to ask questions before he passed in his 90's around 1976. His thoughts on the subject, however, seem to have been different from the 'treasure hunters' that were coming there, since they 'obviously' knew something that he didn't. I'm assuming this is the case. And where they had received their information, one can only imagine. It had to have originated from somewhere. And it had to have been quite telling; powerful enough, that is, to motivate many men from elsewhere to come with shovels. Obviously, the supposed buried gold had been planted there long before my grandfather had acquired that section of land, so he would not have known anything about the details of it to begin with. Now, the story gets more interesting as I heard it from my Grandmother and Father, who both recounted hearing that although my grandfather may have believed it to be there, he had no real way of actually finding it, so chose to dismiss it from thought. Detectors were not even thought of then, and the only way to go about it was to simply start digging holes. Well, you can imagine how that went. Finally, after much argument, and I'm hoping not at the point of a gun, the treasure hunters left empty-handed. I'm going to put a reasonable guess as to the date of these occurrences, and say it was sometime in the 40's or up to the late 50's.
As to the origin of this supposed 'strongbox', the best I can figure out, is that it may have been a Union pay-chest brought back across the river and deposited after the spoils were taken from Mansfield. To deposit it close to Shelbyville would have been the thing to do, for ease of recovery later, as this was really the only notable town in this immediate area closest to the river crossing, along this side of the neutral strip at the time. There were Cherokee's helping for sure, and I have found one hoot-owl tree in the area that still had the binding wire (the pattern of it has now been dated to that time) which I found with my Cibola in the ground at the base. As one may understand, nothing can be determined by this tree alone, so as it stands now, is simply one minor piece of the puzzle that only the ones that made it know anything of what it means. Also found was a copper rivet from a military leather 'something', that still had a small bit of black leather attached. The property that my grandfather had is no longer in the family, although I myself, have 105 acres within walking distance of perhaps a mile. There is evidence that it may actually be on my land instead of where the treasure hunters were originally looking, given the tree and the rivet finds are on mine. I have tried hunting the creek, and it curls around like a snake through my land and elsewhere. Someone may ask why I have not detected the banks, well, the undergrowth is such that it makes the going very hard, if not impossible at times. I have hunted the areas where I can actually stand up somewhat straight like a human being, but the rest is a matter of crawling, and sometimes on hands and knees, and this with cottonmouth snakes appearing right in front of one's face. It's not easy going.
Is there gold there? I'm not going to say if there is or isn't, and perhaps no one will ever know. But some 'thing' had to have influenced those hunters in the 50's.
I wanted to finally get this information into the public domain, because if something should ever happen to me, then maybe someone later, and with a more technically advanced machine or dowsing capability can go after it.
I personally believe in dowsing, because I've seen it work with my own eyes. But this was with dowsing a water well. As for dowsing an aerial photo, I would have to see that with my own eyes to believe it as well. Be that as it may, I never close my mind to any possibility. I simply have to see things work with my own eyes.
If anyone wants to try, I can send the exact area to photo and map dowse, but only for those serious enough to put effort into the search.
My main purpose here for posting this to begin with, is to include it in the records, for the future generations, and so that, hopefully, it will not be lost to time.
I'm almost 50 now, and to be honest, I would rather spend the rest of my years on treasure leads that are more fascinating to me.
To have one on my own land, or somewhat adjacent to it, has always been something that has occupied my thoughts, but as there is no way for me to actually locate within a few yards radius of where it is, then it might as well be in Arizona instead. But I leave this here for those that it may help.
 

LandSeig

Full Member
May 16, 2020
146
412
Southeast Tx
Detector(s) used
Garrett AT Pro, NEL Storm coil
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I really enjoyed your story. East Tx is a really interesting place with a lot of old history, it was such a unknown area filled with a lot of movement through it that was never recorded. No telling what is out there in the ground and who was hiding out around the rivers and pine thickets.

Some of my family settled in Sabine county in early 1850s, it would be interesting to find their old homestead. It’s a good chance it’s part of Toledo Bend now though.
 

El_Ingeniero

Newbie
Apr 27, 2022
4
6
Tejas
I joined because of this post. It is too funny you mention this story because I have heard one all too similar. Let me expound on your ideas by throwing out a question: If you were in-around Shelbyville and you had to cross the river, where do you go? Well of course north to Logansport and then over to Mansfield. But we have to bury a large sum of money, why would we bury it along such a busy route where it could be easily uncovered? What if instead of going north, we go the same distance south around Geneva to the historical crossing at Carter's Ferry? There is nothing within miles and miles and miles of it so there are plenty of places to secret the goods there. Now I don't know how they would have found the feature I heard they hid it in, but it is what my buddy's great grandfather told his dad: it was buried in the cliff face of a 40ft waterfall on their property. It would have been easy enough to dig the hole because the psuedokarst terrain is easy enough to dig into, but it is stable enough to hold up to the elements. It would have been easy to access at that time, but that is no longer the case, hence why we didn't go look. Also his dad is rich as all get out so he just doesn't have a desire to do anything about it. What's funny is I was just talking to him the other day and they timbered the property, maybe we could get a backhoe back there to build us a ramp to go down into the canyon and do some detecting. :headbang: The other one I have heard in that Gunnels cave used to be deeper, the sinkhole at the back was actually an intact cavern roof, but in haste, soldiers had to hide loot at the back of the cave, then used ordinance to blow the roof down on top, creating the sinkhole that is there today and effectively burying the goods.
 

El_Ingeniero

Newbie
Apr 27, 2022
4
6
Tejas
I would like to see that 40ft waterfall, they are pretty rare around these parts.
At the bottom it is certainly a cottonmouth pit like you described. Last time I was out there we measured flow at the top and then down stream where it was accessible and only about 60% of the water that goes over comes out so we think there is a seep at the bottom of that pit that winds up a spring down river. It is truly a miraculous place. Sure wish I owned it.
 

LandSeig

Full Member
May 16, 2020
146
412
Southeast Tx
Detector(s) used
Garrett AT Pro, NEL Storm coil
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Have you ever been out to Gunnels cave? I’d be curious to see that.
 
OP
Doubloony

Doubloony

Jr. Member
Apr 8, 2021
34
57
East Texas
Detector(s) used
Tesoro Cibola, Tesoro Compadre
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #8
I joined because of this post. It is too funny you mention this story because I have heard one all too similar. Let me expound on your ideas by throwing out a question: If you were in-around Shelbyville and you had to cross the river, where do you go? Well of course north to Logansport and then over to Mansfield. But we have to bury a large sum of money, why would we bury it along such a busy route where it could be easily uncovered? What if instead of going north, we go the same distance south around Geneva to the historical crossing at Carter's Ferry? There is nothing within miles and miles and miles of it so there are plenty of places to secret the goods there. Now I don't know how they would have found the feature I heard they hid it in, but it is what my buddy's great grandfather told his dad: it was buried in the cliff face of a 40ft waterfall on their property. It would have been easy enough to dig the hole because the psuedokarst terrain is easy enough to dig into, but it is stable enough to hold up to the elements. It would have been easy to access at that time, but that is no longer the case, hence why we didn't go look. Also his dad is rich as all get out so he just doesn't have a desire to do anything about it. What's funny is I was just talking to him the other day and they timbered the property, maybe we could get a backhoe back there to build us a ramp to go down into the canyon and do some detecting. :headbang: The other one I have heard in that Gunnels cave used to be deeper, the sinkhole at the back was actually an intact cavern roof, but in haste, soldiers had to hide loot at the back of the cave, then used ordinance to blow the roof down on top, creating the sinkhole that is there today and effectively burying the goods.

That sure sounds like a place that could have been used as a marker or site. 40 ft. waterfalls, like Landseig mentioned, are rare here, as you know. The tallest drop from the bank of my creek to the bottom is 20 ft. or so, and I always watch my footing around that part...lol
But 40 ft. is DOUBLE, a tall one for here, that's for sure. There may be something to it.
I went to Gunnels Cave way back before anybody cared, and I did find it strange that it did not go deeper, because everything I had researched (Republic of Texas era / pre-civil war) described it as having a large room, so thanks for the info about the back room. That explains it! When I went there, the subject of treasure was not on my mind though, as I was in my 20's and thinking of girls, and the friend I had along at the time had a fascination for every form of wildlife and wanted to count the bats, so when I discovered that the cave was not what I had imagined, and as I listened to the persistent counting, the trip became somewhat painfully boring. The back room being caved in now makes sense! I'm not sure if anyone is allowed to go there now. Probably not, as everything that was once normal in life is now banned. Amazing to think about what may be under that sinkhole. I do remember that they found a 'modern' gun cache, most certainly stolen, in there in the late 90's or maybe early 2000's.
There may be some places in the Sabine NF that have falls that high, and I still intend to explore all of it I can, but will get me a GPS first to make it easier. I've got land as well that directly borders the NF, and being around here all my life, I know that people just don't go in far enough to scratch the surface, not even hunters. And that is probably a good thing, or we would have a lot of missing persons cases. Hunters go about as far as they can walk from their truck and that's it. The big deep areas don't even know humans exist anymore.
I too, would love to see that 40 ft. waterfall.
 
Last edited:
OP
Doubloony

Doubloony

Jr. Member
Apr 8, 2021
34
57
East Texas
Detector(s) used
Tesoro Cibola, Tesoro Compadre
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #9
I really enjoyed your story. East Tx is a really interesting place with a lot of old history, it was such a unknown area filled with a lot of movement through it that was never recorded. No telling what is out there in the ground and who was hiding out around the rivers and pine thickets.

Some of my family settled in Sabine county in early 1850s, it would be interesting to find their old homestead. It’s a good chance it’s part of Toledo Bend now though.

Glad you mentioned Toledo Bend. It's a flat out crime what they did, burying towns and cemeteries underwater, not to mention moving families from their homes. I do know that before it was flooded, there was a spot downriver from Logansport where a ship had grounded. Some say it was Spanish, some say it was one of Lafitte's, but kids swimming in the early 1900's used to find silver reales there in that spot where it was said part of the hull remained. It was supposedly right at or near where the river now joins the lake.
Speaking of Lafitte, I've always been interested in Shacklefoot, which was a base on the river for his crews, but it's alongside the lake now too, and looks to be too populated (at least from Google Earth view) to do any snooping. Sometimes I think the entire reason for them making lakes is to cover it all up. I've seen so many, seems like 100's, of treasure leads, and they all have been either made into lakes or are located 'conveniently' on Fed land. There is a point where one cannot write these things off as coincidence. Not saying they would build an entire lake for the purpose of covering one small thing like a ship, but they certainly can position to a degree where it begins and ends, and it so conveniently began right there at that spot. Maybe they got wind of those kids buying candy in Logansport with silver 8-reales...
 

LandSeig

Full Member
May 16, 2020
146
412
Southeast Tx
Detector(s) used
Garrett AT Pro, NEL Storm coil
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
That sure sounds like a place that could have been used as a marker or site. 40 ft. waterfalls, like Landseig mentioned, are rare here, as you know. The tallest drop from the bank of my creek to the bottom is 20 ft. or so, and I always watch my footing around that part...lol
But 40 ft. is DOUBLE, a tall one for here, that's for sure. There may be something to it.
I went to Gunnels Cave way back before anybody cared, and I did find it strange that it did not go deeper, because everything I had researched (Republic of Texas era / pre-civil war) described it as having a large room, so thanks for the info about the back room. That explains it! When I went there, the subject of treasure was not on my mind though, as I was in my 20's and thinking of girls, and the friend I had along at the time had a fascination for every form of wildlife and wanted to count the bats, so when I discovered that the cave was not what I had imagined, and as I listened to the persistent counting, the trip became somewhat painfully boring. The back room being caved in now makes sense! I'm not sure if anyone is allowed to go there now. Probably not, as everything that was once normal in life is now banned. Amazing to think about what may be under that sinkhole. I do remember that they found a 'modern' gun cache, most certainly stolen, in there in the late 90's or maybe early 2000's.
There may be some places in the Sabine NF that have falls that high, and I still intend to explore all of it I can, but will get me a GPS first to make it easier. I've got land as well that directly borders the NF, and being around here all my life, I know that people just don't go in far enough to scratch the surface, not even hunters. And that is probably a good thing, or we would have a lot of missing persons cases. Hunters go about as far as they can walk from their truck and that's it. The big deep areas don't even know humans exist anymore.
I too, would love to see that 40 ft. waterfall.
I’ve hunted the national forest around the lakes and your right, most of the time people hunt within 200 yds of the road. I bow hunt until rifle season starts, then I leave it to them, to many inexperienced hunters with high powered rifles.
I found a big, flat rocky raised area at the end of the road on Boykin springs past the horse pond. It may just have something to do with the old town that was back there.
 

somwil

Newbie
Mar 16, 2022
1
0
East Texas
I am fascinated with your story! I was born and raised in East Texas (Huntington) and have a similar story to yours on Biloxi Creek. My husband is working in Mansfield, La so I am back and forth frequently. Lmk if y’all put together a hunt, I’d love to help, cottonmouths or not. Lol. We also have lots on Toledo Bend but I haven’t done much research on that area.
 

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