Monday, December 29, 2008

One More in Le Flore County, OK, Brushy Mountain

If you venture into Le Flore County, Oklahoma to look for Buzzard Hill and that Spanish treasure or even Skullyville you might want to stay a day or two longer and check out the area around Brushy Mountain. I’ll get the fine print out of the way up front; there are four mountains in Oklahoma named Brushy Mountain so make sure you are looking at the one in Le Flore County and not somewhere else.

This treasure is another one linked to the Spanish. It is said to consist of over 12 million dollars in gold doubloons and ingots hidden by Spanish Traders who thought an Indian attack was imminent.

As with the Buzzard Hill treasure, several Spaniards, some say as many as six over a period of time from 1850 to 1926, came into the area of Brushy Mountain looking for clues to this lost treasure. A man named Clutter even did some digging on the south side of Brushy Mountain where he had found several clues from an old Spanish map he was given to hunt for the treasure. His digging uncovered a skeleton, several hundred arrow heads, some grinding stones and pestles but no gold. Some of the clues he found included a series of drill holes above where he dug and a shaped ledge, all of which were apparently on his map. He had interpreted the symbols as marking the location of the cave that the gold was in but he never found the cave.

In 1968 some Spanish armor was found by a treasure hunter on Brushy Mountain which would at least prove the Spanish were there just in case you have any doubts.

This story and the one about the treasure on Buzzard Hill both seem to intermingle their clues when you read about the stories. Some of the old Spanish and Mexican searches may have been looking for clues to one treasure and their story was told with the other and vice versa. The Spaniards that came into the area looking for clues along the two rivers were probably searching for this treasure on Brushy Mountain and not the treasure on Buzzard Hill since Brushy Mountain is actually in the area of Elk and Grand Rivers. I should point out that Elk River wasn’t always called Elk River, it used to be the Cowskin River.

There are a few stories of a lost Spanish mine in this area and some start at a spot in the next county called Standing Rock. Some of these stories and clues may all be connected and others may be to one of the other treasures in the area. Several carvings and drill holes have been found in the area of Standing Rock, Buzzard Hill and Brushy Mountain.

The good thing about the treasure on Brushy Mountain is that the clues and the treasure itself may not be as hard to find as the one on Buzzard Hill. I’m not saying it will be easy because if it was it would already be gone but, the Spanish working the mine at Buzzard Hill had more time to make and hide their clues where as the Spanish traders were in fear of an imminent Indian attack and probably hid that treasure relatively fast, making most if not all of the clues visible, as in above ground.


Anonymous said...

I live in LeFlore county, OK, and so have some questions if I may. There is a problem with your directions. While you mention the Elk River was once called the Cowskin river, you do not mention that the Grand River is now known as the lower Neosho River. The Elk River and lower Neosho come together in the Grand Lake O' the Cherokees. The Cherokee Casino is built on the Elk River arm, just before the two merge. This is a good long way from LeFlore County, which is south of the I-40 by Arkansas, whereas the lake is actually North East of Tulsa, close to the Missouri and Kansas borders, placing it nearly half a state a way north to south. There is however a Brushy Mountain in LeFlore county, south of Lake Wister. Feeding off Lake Wister is the Poteau River, Fouche Maline, Holson Creek, Coal Creek, and others. But nothing so large as the rivers you mention. So I am curious as to which is accurate? Should the "Brushy Mountain" in question be up in the Northern Cherokee area? Or are the names of the rivers incorrect? Or is it perhaps a reference to yet another location altogether?

Anonymous said...

As another part of the question, how does standing rock play into this? It is now covered by lake Eufala - and is about 90 miles distant at least from Brushy Mountain in LeFlore County. From Wikipedia - "Standing Rock is now covered by the waters of Lake Eufaula. The historic landmark stood in the middle of the Canadian river about two miles (3 km) below the junction of the North and South Canadians. When the lake is at its top level, 585 feet (178 m), the top of the huge upright rock is approximately 25 feet (7.6 m) below the surface." Perhaps these are the two rivers referenced? If so then "Brushy Mountain" would be likely in McIntosh county, or possibly Haskell or Pittsburg counties. Another web reference would indicate this may in fact be the case - "Standing Rock is now covered by the waters of Lake Eufaula. The historic landmark stood in the middle of the Canadian river about two miles below the junction of the North and South Canadians. When the lake is at its top level 585 feet the top of the huge upright rock is approximately 25 feet below the surface.

It is more than a legend that Coronado and his Spanish explorers discovered the huge sandstone in 1535. To validate their claim that the Spaniards were in the region and discovered Standing Rock historians point to symbols carved in the rock. There is no argument about the symbols being the work of early explorers. The carvings were about 30 feet above the base. There were two, a turtle, and a triangle with a handle attached to
one of the points.

The height of the rock varies as to who you talk with. Some claim it was 65 feet tall then there are others who claim it was only 40 feet. The debate continues to wax around Eufaula's loafing spots.

For may years the river and area around Standing Rock was a favorite fishing spot. Also thousands of picnickers, sightseers and campers roamed about the region. However, most of the activity in the vicinity was treasure hunters.

Treasure hunting in the Standing Rock region probably dates back to the first white pioneers that settled in the region. Through the years they blasted, drilled and dug the rock hillsides until the region resembles a gold mining claim.

The buried treasure legend dates back to the Spanish explorers. According to old Indian stories, the Spanish buried large quantities of gold and silver in the vicinity.

The carved symbols on the big rock caused much of the excitement. Many of the treasure hunters claimed they could read and decode the symbols. There are also some others sign and symbols in the region. One which drew a lot of attention was an arrowhead marker carved on a huge oak tree. From what little I have studied and learned about Spanish treasure symbols the turtle would mean "disaster." Which would tie in with the old Indian
tales that the Spanish became sick and couldn't carry their gold. So they buried it near Standing Rock, marked the area so they could find it when they returned However, they all were either killed or died from sickness as the story goes.

The old stories, legends and myths about standing Rock and its mysteries goes on. But as of now the huge stone is sleeping under the waters of Lake Eufaula and unless we have a terrible drought, or the skiers knock the big pond dry, we will probably never see the huge hunk of sandstone again."

Anonymous said...

To add to this - there is a Brushy Mountain cemetery just to the Southwest of the town of Muscogee, about 22 miles from standing rock. This is the location where the Vertigris and the Lower Neosho (Grand River) flow into the Arkansas River. Perhaps these are the rivers in question, and the Brushy Mountain mentioned? Just trying to help make sense of the story in conjunction with the geography of the state.

okie treasure hunter said...

This story was written by Ron so I'm unsure of his sources of information

Anonymous said...

Just one more piece of information. There IS a Brushy Mountain in LeFlore county, it's just not by Spiro. It is actually south of Lake Wister, on the North side of Holson Valley Road. This in itself doesn't mean too much. However..... In the 1920's there was a town of Goldville which was South West of Cedar Lake, on the west side of Cedar Creek, that was a promising gold mining area. This area as close as I can tell is referred to as Goldville Divide today. It is just to the east of Brushy Mountain on the South side of Holson Valley Road. During my searching I found a gentleman who went panning in the creeks that cross Holson Valley Road (not sure from which side he was approaching, but the road is not overly long) and he found gold flecks in his pan..... This would probably cover a combined area of several miles on this road, but whether or not a Spanish mine might exist there, this makes 3 reports of natural gold within a very short space, in an area where officially gold does not exist. It might be interesting if someone were a prospector to take a look around and see what there is to see.