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Landmarks

    In nearly every version known of the Swift journal there are a lot of landmarks. Swift describes a rugged, rocky dense forested area where his treasures are hidden. As the journal was copied over and over down through the years no doubt mistakes were made. Likely some landmarks were omitted while others gradually were added.
Gray's Arch with part of large Rock Shelter
    "You can stand on top of the hill above Buffalo Rock and look towards the west and see a hole through the cliff and the sky beyond. We call it Sky Rock or the Light House. Not far west of the mine is a small creek that sinks underground, and we called it the Drying Ground or Sinkon Creek.  About a mile west of the mine we cut turkey tracks under a cliff pointing backwards to the mine..."
Indian Stairway
    "He (Munday) led us to the Indian Stair Steps. You can stand on the top of the stair steps and look across the creek at the mine and the cliffs are in the shape of a half-moon...near the mine is a large drain at the head of which is a rock that resembles a haystack. We called it the Haystack Rock.  Where the ore is, the cliff is in the shape of a half-moon..."*
Half Moon Cliff 
   These descriptions are taken from a version of the journal believed to date before 1859. There are many variations and even a lot more descriptive terms in this journal. It is interesting that a rock called Half-Moon was mentioned twice in the journal. Rocks and landmarks resembling these clues can be found in a few places in the regions of Kentucky, Virginia  and Tennessee. These indicators are to the mines and Swift claims to have had mines working two veins of silver ore. He referred to them as the upper and lower mines.
Haystack Rock
    Other descriptions were provided to hidden or buried caches of silver coins and ingots that Swift and company smelted and minted from the silver ore supposedly.
    These are just a few of the many clues that are included in various journals and they can be found in more than one area and even in other states. Last update Kiowa Muncie took us to a really unique site that he has discovered many of the markings and features. He also found some fascinating formations and natural features. We will continue to watch his progress on his search efforts.
Rock Bridge spans Swift Creek
    Now landmarks associated with the Swift journal vary as well. While the condensed version of one of the journal variations list the places shown above other versions speak of different clues. In one version Swift speaks of a bridge crossing a stream. Could this be the Rock Bridge of Swift Creek? On top about midway across the natural stone arch is a carved turkey track. Though very faint now it has been there for many years. Of course Swift mentions carving turkey tracks in the rock pointing the direction of the mines. Swift speaks of a place where three streams come together and said " don't ever stop looking for the mine there."





 In this early map done by John Filson the three forks of the Kentucky River clearly are shown coming together. Interestingly enough James Harrod, founder of the first fort and settlement in Kentucky actually disappeared while searching for the Swift Mines at the three forks of the Kentucky River! You can read more about James Harrod's connection to the Swift legend here.


*Lost Silver Mines and Buried Treasures of Kentucky, Paul Henson, 1972 pp 9-14


    

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