By Tom Hale
Related to Emory L. Hamilton on
August 13, 1940. The WPA Project, The
Alderman Library, The University of Virginia,
The Swift mine I ve been told was
seven mile from the "Burning Spring" in the
Nettle Patch. Near here was where the gun was
buried with the barrel pointing toward the
entrance to the mine.
Uncle John Powers and some others
were in there hunting and found a kit of tools
in a hole in a rock in the Nettle Patch country.
Another rock had been set over the opening
where the tools were hidden. This was up a
branch from the old Smith place in the Nettle
Patch. They called it Laurel Branch. He said
they went up the left side of the branch in a
laurel thicket. The hole in the rock he said,
looked like it had been cut out and a flat rock
laid over the hole to cover it up. They found a
hammer, a crucible and a pair of moulds. He
had the hammer when he died I ve been told.
He told me and Emmet White, here at my
house one Sunday the directions to take to find
the hole and went there and searched, but
couldn t find anything.
I ve heard that Swift and them lived in
Tennessee. I believe I heard old Isaac Willis
say this. When I was a kid they told me that a
lot of counterfeit money had been passed in
Tennessee. It was silver dollars and half
dollars. Finally the counterfeiters were caught
and several sent to the pen. Everybody believed
that the counterfeiters mined their silver in this
section to make the money.
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