Nobody went in unarmed. A storm came through one night and they all died of hypothermia. One theory why nobody has found the mine is that Waltz might have even been a claim jumper who hid stolen loot up there in a dugout and made trips whenever he needed money. Some was sold to a San Francisco mint; some was made into a necklace and matching bracelet; some was shipped to a jeweler and fashioned into a matchbox case that measures 4.
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The Lost Dutchman legend also has a link to wealthy Mexican cattle ranchers of the s, the Peralta family from Sonora, who supposedly dug many gold treasures out of the Superstitions. Their plundering ended in , or so the tale is told, when on a gold run back to Mexico all but a few got massacred by Apaches. Some say the Apaches went back to the mine and hid the gold, and the Dutchman either stumbled across it or did a favor for a surviving Peralta, who directed him to the stash.
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A hiker literally tripped over a sharp piece of rock and dug up four flat stones on which were carved instructions and a crude map. Two stones are rough maps leading to a carved heart, the supposed treasure location; centered in the heart is the date , one year before all but a few Peraltas met their doom.
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The actual stones are in the care of Greg Davis, director of research, acquisitions, libraries, and archives for the Superstition Mountain Historical Society. Along with an assortment of rumors and yarns, those stones keep the legend alive and the hopeful hoping.
Yet, people continue to search for a treasure they are convinced is there and theirs for the taking. They are not necessarily crackpots, either: Former Arizona attorney general Bob Corbin searched for that mine off and on for 50 years.
Lost Dutchman Mine
Now in his late 80s, Corbin remains convinced that the mine is out there. Some years ago, someone found a note in a bottle floating in the Salt River. Despite all the hokum and the hoaxes and even the risks and dangers, Dutch Hunters keep searching for what they are convinced is a genuine and gigantic pot of gold.
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The Lost Mountain: A Tale of Sonora by Mayne Reid
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