Saturday, December 30, 2006

Lost Indian Silver Mine

In the spring of 1825, a man by the name of J.T. Groves was visiting the cabin of Thomas Burns when a party of four Indians stopped to trade their canoes for food, picks and shovels.

As the Indians proceeded on foot up stream, Burns watched and grinned. He knew that he had gotten the better of the deal.

Several days later, the four Indians returned to Burns' cabin to buy back their canoes. He and Groves were even more surprised with this trade than the first. The Indians had offered a small bag of silver ore for their canoes and food and lodging for the night.

The Indians had several more heavily laden sacks in their possession. While the Indians were asleep, Groves checked their sacks and found them filled with silver ore of a very high quality.

In the morning, the Indians were long-gone before Burns and Groves awoke, but Groves was one of the best trackers in the county. He took their tracks up the Susquehanna River as far as Birch Island Run. It was there that he lost the trail, when the tracks led into the river.

He searched the riverbanks on both sides without success. He searched the river for miles. He even went up Birch Island Run until it was too dark to see.

There were no tracks leading out of the river, and at that time of year, the Susquehanna was too low and difficult to pole a canoe upstream. The Indians did a good job hiding their trail from the tracker.

A few years later, Groves returned to the same area with his son and searched from Birch Island to Spruce Run. They even went up Moores Run, Bougher Run and the Little Bougher Run, but they were unsuccessful at discovering any trace of the Indian Silver Mine.

From Legends of Clearfield County by Melvin G. Lingle, published by the author, 2004.

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