I originally started this blog for the main purpose of cross promoting the book I wrote about the Swift legend. I still do devote much of the efforts of this site to promote the sale of that book. However, the site has grown over the years to be more than just a collection of clues and discussion of the Swift legend or the book. I have found myself in one continuous adventure of discovering and rediscovering interesting places, things and people around my beloved state of Kentucky. Each day many people visit the blog site and hopefully go away with a bit more desire to make their own adventure of exploration come to life.
With that said, I do realize that a great number of site visitors end up here at this blog site in their search for Kentucky history and the quest for more information about the legend of John Swift's mysterious lost silver mines. So, this issue of my blog post I am devoting to sharing a somewhat rare copy of the Swift Journal that was passed along to my father in the early 1960's.
Keep in mind that there are many versions of the journal and they have many variations, some of which are unique to particular geographical area. Even in the 60's it was thought there were perhaps as many as 50 different versions. They all offered some common references, the most common being that none offer a specific location identified by exact coordinates. Some are tantalizingly close but none on the mark. Perhaps this was intentional so that a hoax or scheme could be continued and widely sold. Perhaps Swift himself intentional omitted coordinates in order to offer better security for his treasure.
My father, Clarence Henson, was given a copy of the journal in 1962. Dad was much sought after for his knowledge of places, landmarks and about anything concerning the Red River Gorge area in those days. I can only assume that the following version of the journal was sent to dad in hopes that he might study it and locate some of the landmarks mentioned. He later gave the journal to his first cousin, Michael Paul Henson who retyped and adding comments throughout the manuscript. Paul's notes are in red along with a brief heading. He later published portions of this journal and others in his definitive guide books on the famous treasure. I am sorry for the size of the text here as these are scanned copies of Michael Paul's original manuscript seen here publicly for the first time! Happy treasure hunting!
And a reminder to all our new readers my historic novel about this very legend is available from Amazon.com