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Showing posts from October, 2010

Has it been found?

The book development is moving along.  The book is still in the edit phase and should  be ready for press just after the first of the year.  I had hoped to have everything done by the end of this year, but things have a way of changing plans.
     Many treasure hunters still search after the elusive Swift treasure even today.  Some have claimed to have found it and others claim to know where it is located.  I have never been convinced, yet, that anyone has actually found the treasure. On the other hand, if someone had made the actual discovery, would they tell about it?  Writing about this wonderful story has been a great project.  Most all locations mentioned in the book are actual places.  There are still other landmarks, such as the half moon pictured here, that have been mentioned in some versions of the Swift Journal that are not included in this story. Though historians may slightly be upset at the liberty I have taken with historical characters, I believe the reader will s…

Swift- A Novel Coming Soon

The legend says that men under the leadership of Captain John Swift were mining silver in the wilderness west of the Allegheny Mountains in mid 1700’s.   History records that one of Kentucky’s first pioneers, John Finley, established a trading store in the same region, also in the mid 1700’s.   The legendary silver mines have never been found nor have they been proven not to exist.   Historians face the same dilemma in that they cannot prove nor disprove the early pioneers did exactly what they claimed.   History is recalled from our minds, perhaps written down or photographed, but in the end history, legends and lore are all collections of recollections.  The current collection of history has been favorable to Daniel Boone and other early pioneers but has little regard for John Finley.  This was unfortunate.

Follow the Turkey Track - Excerpt from "Swift"

Finally, after what seemed like hours of driving, they reached the graveled parking lot and Rock Bridge picnic area. From the edge of the parking lot was the trail head. Will, Jennifer and Ray quickly grabbed a bottle of water each and headed down the trail. The Rock Bridge trail led the three adventurers off down a short half mile walk down the crest of a ridge. The obviously well used path brought the trio to one of the most famous and most unusual rock formations in all the country. Here the creek had completely eroded through the sandstone conglomerate rock creating a ‘rock bridge’ across the creek. Ray had seen it before and immediately scrambled up the rocky outcrop and made his way out on the bridge. In a matter of seconds Ray located the odd carving.             “Hey, here it is,” Ray yelled.             Will and Jennifer climbed up the rocks to see, for what they had traveled this far and spent a Saturday morning searching. Ray had seen this track before and wanted the others t…

Shawnee Town - Excerpt from "Swift"

Arrival at Eskippakithiki

The site of the Shawnee town was shocking to John Finely as they crossed over a low hill and the entire levels of the town came into full view. They had already greeted others along the path that were coming out from the town and saw other small parties of five and six hunters moving out in various directions. As they made their way into the village some took notice but seemed apathetic to the arrival of the group containing two white men. It simply was assumed that the warriors would not have brought trouble to this great town.
     Eskippakithiki was situated on a level plain at the foot hills of the last remnants of the mountains located to the east. The village was a scattering of long bark houses, the kind of permanent house most southeastern tribes built. Several poles were set in a general rectangular -shape, stockade style. Smaller rafter poles were arched for the roof. Mud, moss, leaves, dry grass and bark was mixed in random fashion to cover the ent…

The Journal

The Swift Journal

The legend of the lost silver mines of John Swift has been passed along from generation to generation.   There are many versions of the supposed journal left by Swift. Swift died in 1800 and wrote down the directions to the mines just before he died. Here are excerpts from the journal that is thought to be dated to 1859 and likely the oldest version.

“I was delayed in my search for the silver mines by the French and Indian War. I had known the Frenchman Munday, *several years by then. In 1760 we searched and found the mines but were unable to work them until the following year.   The first company in search of these mines were: Staley, Ireland, McClintock, Blackburn, myself and some friendly Shawnee Indians, with Munday as our guide into the wilderness.”

“The creek the furnace is in heads southwest and then runs northeast.  It is in a far and remote place in the west.  It abounds with laurel.  It is so rough and rocky that it is nearly impossible to get horses to the fu…