<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> DoubleTake Curse of Superstition Gold
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U.S.S. Arizona

THE CURSE OF

SUPERSTITION

GOLD

U.S.S. Arizona sinking
THE U.S.S. ARIZONA BEFORE PEARL HARBOR   THE U.S.S. ARIZONA DURING ATTACK

Another famous Superstition Gold curse story involves one of the worst disasters of WW II and the famous Roosevelt Dam.  Built from the rocks of the Superstitions, it claimed 22 deaths in its construction. The first water from the dam's overflow was saved and used to Christen a giant battleship.

More than 25 years later, this battleship became the first loss in the infamous Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The ship was the U.S.S. Arizona and more than 1000 seamen went down with her.  Another coincidence or perhaps a DoubleTake?  Of CURSE!

ALL THAT GLITTERS ISN'T ... LOST AND FOUND

 

There have been tales about Pygmy Indians, Apache warriors guarding the area, flying saucer stories, (by the way, UFO's are real, the Air Force doesn't exist) and every other imaginable tale about the "Killer Mountains". Stories still appear quite frequently from people who swear (another Legendary curse) that they have found the Lost Dutchman Mine. In addition, many others have been cheated out of their life's savings by unscrupulous con men. (Perhaps this is where the term "Golden Fleece" came from!) 

Every fool years or so, someone "finds" the mine again. The Lost Dutchman mine is the most-found-lost mine, lost-again mine ever. If the Dutchman turned over in his grave every time someone found his mine, he'd be dizzy. In 1901, Charles Woolf discovered it. In 1914,  Sylvester (Scotty) Portella did too. In 1920, a mining "operation" found it, but the only thing they picked were the pockets of the investors. In 1924, Lee Turner turned the Dutchman over again. In 1932, Thomas Wiggins caused a mining gold rush when he found some nuggets, but the ore panned out in a few days. In 1936, another man turned in his claim - it turned out to be stolen gold from a dentist' supply. Next came the Howlands, who actually found about 800 pounds of ore worth $40,000,  and in 1949, Henry Bruderlin staked his claim and his reputation that he found it - he was a brazziere salesman!

 

And speaking of "bizzare" ...  In 1955, Edgard E. Cayce (the famous psychic?) made his claim around the Needle and a few years ago, Peter Hurkos of ESP (Extra Superstition Power?) fame, came to the area to try his powers. A book entitled "Strange People" even states that he found the Lost Dutchman Mine.

In 1970, Arnie Steen said he found the mine. In 1975, Robert "Crazy Jake" Jacob announced to the press that he had found the Dutchman Mine in-sight  (later, he nearly in-cited a riot) of Weaver's Needle. In 1980, Charles Kentworthy announced that he found it by using the "Peralta Stone Maps" and aerial photography. One month later, Charles Crawford did the same. In 1983, Michael Bilbry again found it - this time by using the Peralta Stones and the "Indiana Jones shadow-points-to-the-gold-spot" trick. (Boy!  This is starting to sound like a movie ad.) 

As recently as December of 1985, Robert Jacob, the same "Crazy Jake" of 1975, was indicted by an Arizona Grand Jury on charges of fraud and theft in conjunction with the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine. Reports indicate that there may have been up to $30 million "invested" in a bogus mine. Interestingly, a set of physicians (More doctor's!) seem to have been duped, as were many of their friends. Even Crazy Jake is claiming he is just a pawn in some conspiracy - here we go again!

Raiders of the Lost Ark

DEATH & DISMEMBERSMINTS

There have been many strange happenings and deaths in the Superstitions that have never been fully explained. In some, the skull was found separated from the rest of the skeleton. Reports vary on these deaths and even the number of them range (home, home on the...) from 20 to 600, depending on how far back you go and who's telling the story. These mysterious deaths and the "curse" have kept the Lost Dutchman Legend and the Killer Mountain mystique alive. Remember, Arizona was the last of the continental states to join the Union and this was just in 1912, only some 70 years ago. Facts have become blended with fiction, myths, exaggerations, and a dab (a little bit will do ya) of truth.

We won't mention all of the deaths and strange disappearances associated with the Legend, but the following should give you a good idea why these mountains are called the Superstitions!

Brownie scull
1880
Two young soldiers travelling through the Superstitions picked up some gold from an old mine and tunnel. They went back into the Superstitions and never returned. Later, both were found with bullet holes in their heads
1884
 Pedro Ortega was found thirty feet from the home of Jacob Waltz. It was reported that Waltz killed him with a shotgun.
1891
On 10/25, a legend was born the day the Dutchman died.
1892
The last known Superstition death caused by an Apache attack was that of Charles Dobie (no relation to Gillis).
1896
The first be-heading of the Superstitions happened to Elisha M. Reavis, "The Madman of the Superstitions". There were no clues as to who killed him.
1910
A women's skeleton was found high in a Superstition Mountain cave.  Gold nuggets were found next to the nude body.
1931
Dr. Adolf Ruth's death created a rebirth of the Legend.
1934
The Superstitions claimed Adam Stewart.
1936
Roma O'Hal was hiking and died from a fall (it was free).
1938
Guy "Hematite" Frank was found dead with a sack of gold at his side.  Another "accidental" death.
1948
James Cravey (62) disappeared while seeking the mine.  His skeleton was found first, then 6 months later, his skull.
1949
James Kidd (no relation to Jesse or Billy) disappeared.
1951
Dr. John Burns of Oregon was found with a bullet hole through his body.  Although there were no powder burns and testimony from a ballistics expert indicated otherwise, the coroner's jury ruled it accidental death or suicide.
1952
Joseph Kelly of Ohio, went into the Superstitions and was never seen again. ... Ross Bley and Charles Harshbarger, California youths, also disappeared.
1955
Charles Massey, hunting with a 22, was found shot between the eyes by a heavy-caliber rifle bullet.  The coroner ruled it an accidental death resulting from a ricochet.
1956 
Martin Zywotho from New York, was found with a bullet hole in his right temple.  Although his gun was found under the body, the death was ruled suicide.
1959
Stanley Hernandez was killed by his friend Benjamin Ferreira, after thinking they discovered gold.  It was actually "Fool's Gold" or pyrite. ...   Robert St. Marie, guard of Celeste Marie Jones, was killed by prospector Edward Piper.  In this strange case, Jones was attempting to drill a hole all the way through Weaver's Needle, thinking that she would surely find the vein of the Lost Dutchman's gold.  Two months after St. Marie was killed, Piper was found dead.  An autopsy gave the cause of death as a "perforated ulcer". ...  Also in 1959, Lavern Rowlee was shot by Ralph Thomas, who was on a hiking trip.  Thomas was attacked by Rowlee and in self-defense, Thomas shot him.
1960
Another be-headed skull was found with two bullet holes in it.  The skull belonged to a Franz Harrer, a student from Austria. ... Also during this year, William Harvey Jr.'s skeleton was found, cause of death unknown.
1961
Children discovered the skeleton of Hilmer Bohen, who had been shot through the head. ... Walter Mowry's bullet-ridden body was found.  Cause of death -- "suicide".
1963
Vance Bacon, while working for Celeste Marie (tunnel through the Needle) Jones, fell from the top of Weaver's Needle.  Supposedly, there were rifle shots and indications of foul play.
1964
Jay Clapp's headless skeleton was discovered, but his skull has never been found. ...  Richard and Robert Kremis were found dead at the bottom of a high cliff. ... Also during this year, an elderly couple was found murdered in an automobile.
1970
Long-term prospector, Al Morrow, was killed by a boulder that fell into the tunnel that he was digging.
1973
Charles Lewing shot Ladislas Guerrero in self defense at the Robert "Crazy Jake" Jacob's campsite.
1976
A gunshot killed Howard Polling, who was prospecting.
1977
Dennis Brown died from a gunshot wound.
1978
Manuel Valdez was murdered.
1980
Rick Fenning's skeleton was found.

While researching the Legend of the Lost Dutchman for the Goldbuster Guidebook that accompanied the Superstition Gold album, DoubleTake found many things about Gold.  NOTE: MANY OF THE WEB PAGES USED IN THE GOLD 'N STUFF SECTION HAVE BEEN TAKEN FROM THE GUIDEBOOK, BUT HAVE BEEN EDITED FOR THE INTERNET AND DO NOT NECESSARILY USE IN"CLUE" INFORMATION ABOUT THE DT'S SEARCH FOR THE GOLD.

USE THESE DOUBLETAKE LINKS (OR THE NAVIGATION BARS AT THE TOP) FOR MORE INFO ON THE LOST DUTCHMAN LEGEND.

THE LOST DUTCHMAN LEGEND - LORE OR MESS (MORE OR LESS)

HYSTERICALLY SPEAKING ... or ... IS GOLD JUST A 4-LETTER WORD?

"INDIAN GIVERS" ... or ... 10 INDIAN LEGENDS "GIVE OR" TAKE A LITTLE

THE EARLY SPANIARDS … "ORE" …. OLDEN GOLDIES

PERALTA & OTHER SPANISH SKATE BORDERS

THE DUTCHMAN WEAVES HIS WEB

DOCTOR WHO?

A FOOL'S GOLD & HIS MONEY ARE SOON PARTED ... or ... A "PYRITES" TREASURE "POT OF GOLD"

THE CURSE OF SUPERSTITION GOLD

GOLD FEVER RISES -- SHAKE, RATTLE AND ROLL MAKES IT THE FABU LOST GOLD MINE

 

S P O N S O R E D  L I N K S