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The Legend is Still Popular

     There are many reasons why I have loved the John Swift Legend for most of my life, but perhaps the single most important reason is because it is without equal, the oldest legend still unsolved and persistent in all of Kentucky.  It was around, according to some historical documents, even before the Commonwealth of Kentucky was created in 1792, the young nation's fourteenth state.  John Filson wrote the first book about the land of Kentucke, The Discovery, Settlement and present state of Kentucke in 1784.  Though, Filson says in his book that no ore had been discovered yet, by 1788 he files a land claim for acres which would include some of this wilderness area and in the deed claim states contains the mine workings of a man named Swift.  This would be the earliest  record of the supposedly mine workings.
     Even today the legend lives on in many different venues.  There have been written numerous books and countless articles about the legend and, in some cases, the discovery of the fabulous treasure.  There have been special events devoted to the exchange of ideas the idea has been used in many business venture promotions. You can type in the the words John Swift Silver on Google search and come up with no less than a 100,000 sites that contain those words and many refer to this exact story. You will also find this blog site listed there in the top five spots!
     Back in the 90's, my friend Mike Steely, author of  Swift's Silver Mines and Related Appalachian Treasures, organized a Silver Mine Weekend in Jellico, Tennessee.   This was a great opportunity for researchers, collectors, treasure hunters and enthusiasts to come together and share information, swap ideas and take field trips to the local areas along the Pine Mountain,  a hot spot for the legend.
The event is no longer held but it would be nice to see some type of  gathering to keep the dream alive.   There is so much history and mystery surrounding this great story.   That is why I decided to write my novel surrounding this wonderful piece of our Kentucky heritage.


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