List of Swift Journals?

ericw

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Dec 11, 2021
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Does anyone have a comprehensive list of the different publications that swift's journals are published? I have heard there are several different versions, but haven't be able to find where they are/were published. I know there are a few books out there, but some of them are out of publication.
 

KY Hiker

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Estimates are between 30-40 versions of Swift Journals that have been circulating and passed down over the last 220+ years. The earliest documented version was partially published by Rebecca Timmins in two parts in a newspaper in the late 1800's. I say partially because she did not print the complete version that was handed down to her family. She makes no mention of a map either...I will link the two articles below. IMO most if not all of the journals are corrupted/altered to deceive readers/searchers. Also, IMO the journals are not journals as such, but rather written later after the fact...either by Swift or others is unknown. Compare Swift journal readings to those by other explorers of the same time period and you will see an obvious difference in the writing structure. Most of those journals read almost like a travel log with dates, distances and direction traveled, also what was observed. Mrs. Timmins searched and worked in the Red River Gorge area for over 20 years, specifically on and along Swift Camp Creek. There are three boulders in/on the creek where it joins Dog Fork that many claim are Swift landmarks (as well as Rockbridge further upstream). It is said while her husband was alive, that they used explosives in a few areas 'of interest'. Those sources are sketchy at best, no documentation that I could find. If you are new here I suggest reading through all the posts and threads in this section...a wealth of information to get you started.


 
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KY Hiker

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This account is a snippet about the Rockbridge area of Swift Camp Creek as it relates to one of the possible Swift's mine locations.

The location of one of Jonathan Swift’s lost silver mines is given as being on Swift’s Camp Creek, in Wolfe County, KY by historian Lyman Draper in manuscripts from the 1830s. Directions are: “Seven miles above the mouth of the creek (Swift’s Creek) is a natural rock bridge. On the northwest side of the creek, a short distance below the bridge, is a branch. Follow the branch to its head, thence ascend the ridge, leaving the highest part of the ridge on your right. Go along the ridge to a point that is higher than the others, where a large rock seems to have fallen from above. Go in between them. This is where we obtained our best ore.”

or another version reads...

'Seven miles above the mouth is a natural rock bridge, and on the northeast side of the creek a short distance is a branch. Follow the branch to its head, then climb the ridge leading to the highest part on your right. Go along the ridge to a point that is higher than the others where a large rock seems to have fallen from above. Go in between them, this is where we obtained ore. '

Now, if this is a true location ... you can see if the 'northeast' were altered to northwest, southwest or southeast you would be completely sent off track. Unfortunately there are feeder drains in every direction around Rock Bridge... I post this just as an example of why the mines are still undiscovered to this day. Journal alterations could be endless.

The widest circulated journal version was published in the early 1970s, the author (M.P. Henson) stated it was a summation of various versions he had accumulated up to that time. His father was a U.S. Forest service employee in the Red River Gorge area in the late 1940s-early 1960s, and an avid Swift researcher. He named many of the landmarks in the RRGorge.
 
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ericw

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Dec 11, 2021
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This account is a snippet about the Rockbridge area of Swift Camp Creek as it relates to one of the possible Swift's mine locations.

The location of one of Jonathan Swift’s lost silver mines is given as being on Swift’s Camp Creek, in Wolfe County, KY by historian Lyman Draper in manuscripts from the 1830s. Directions are: “Seven miles above the mouth of the creek (Swift’s Creek) is a natural rock bridge. On the northwest side of the creek, a short distance below the bridge, is a branch. Follow the branch to its head, thence ascend the ridge, leaving the highest part of the ridge on your right. Go along the ridge to a point that is higher than the others, where a large rock seems to have fallen from above. Go in between them. This is where we obtained our best ore.”

or another version reads...

'Seven miles above the mouth is a natural rock bridge, and on the northeast side of the creek a short distance is a branch. Follow the branch to its head, then climb the ridge leading to the highest part on your right. Go along the ridge to a point that is higher than the others where a large rock seems to have fallen from above. Go in between them, this is where we obtained ore. '

Now, if this is a true location ... you can see if the 'northeast' were altered to northwest, southwest or southeast you would be completely sent off track. Unfortunately there are feeder drains in every direction around Rock Bridge... I post this just as an example of why the mines are still undiscovered to this day. Journal alterations could be endless.

The widest circulated journal version was published in the early 1970s, the author (M.P. Henson) stated it was a summation of various versions he had accumulated up to that time. His father was a U.S. Forest service employee in the Red River Gorge area in the late 1940s-early 1960s, and an avid Swift researcher. He named many of the landmarks in the RRGorge.
Do you have any links to the other versions of the journals? Or can you tell me a good place to look for them? I have read through this forum and see mention of a number of landmarks like a "turtle rock" " hanging rock" " waterfall" etc. but I haven't been able to find the publications that mention them.
 

KY Hiker

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Do you have any links to the other versions of the journals? Or can you tell me a good place to look for them? I have read through this forum and see mention of a number of landmarks like a "turtle rock" " hanging rock" " waterfall" etc. but I haven't been able to find the publications that mention them.
I would watch eBay, used book stores, thrift stores and the like. The major publications were authored by Michael Paul Henson. Search his name in conjunction with Swift Silver Mine. 95% of the journals were hand written and hand-me-downs or copies. More than likely any 'original' journals were lost before the turn of the 20th century. That is what makes Mrs. Timmins account so valuable, although partially published. Henson was probably the owner of the largest collection and I do not know what happened to his collection when he passed. His cousin Ed is still alive and recently wrote a novel called 'Swift'. Tracking him down may result in knowing where all that material ended up. Here is a link to a blog he used to promote his book:


You will find more information online than you will in any one library or bookstore... this site being one of the largest sources of shared but limited knowledge. I believe by 'thinking out of the box' and using deductive reasoning you'll start on the correct path. Because it is about treasure, greed will most likely impair methodical reasoning.
Many of the landmarks are generic at best, many of them are almost common in the Eastern mountains. Waterfall, to the best of my knowledge, is not a landmark in any journal I have read. Rockhouses, furnaces, a natural arch or window (needle's eye) three creeks coming together, drying ground or sinking creek, Indian stair steps, peculiar rock, cestnut burr rock and a cave or mine opening are common landmarks in the journals I have read. Their association to each other changes often, all to confuse or throw off would be searchers...
 
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rgb1

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Does anyone have a comprehensive list of the different publications that swift's journals are published? I have heard there are several different versions, but haven't be able to find where they are/were published. I know there are a few books out there, but some of them are out of publication.
new book to be released in spring or early summer name of book is TRUTH OF DECEIT THE LOST JOHN SWIFT SILVER MINES this information never printed before it will have copy of what is believed to be original journal
.
 

rgb1

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Wow man is this your book?
this is my book i have entered so much never published info that is why it has taken so long to complete i wanted it all to be as accurate as posable i did not give the property name but the general location of the mines hopefully people will respect his rights and please do not destroy the mines the man refuses to lease or sell although have offered more than should have. even offered double normal royalties over a normal lease.
 

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