The Flathead Courier (Polson, Mont.) 1910-current, November 12, 1937, Image 7

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THE FLATHEAD COURIER homes in the east taking with them The voyage was through hostlle In - in the shape of dust and nuggets the Man country almost from the start accumulated savings of several years' and the Sioux became so troublesome, of hard work, sniping at the boat from the bank The names of the members of the during the day time, that the voyagers party have been lost to history with finally adopted the policy of hiding one exception, that of Pierre Lavelle,1 the boat and themselves in the bushes a Frenchman who had married a Sioux , along shore during the day and travel - Indian woman. And even of him it is ing by night. When two days distant not now known whether he was a mem- from old Fort Rice, the danger was her of the original party or whether thought past, and the party put out he and his wife joined it at some point in daylight. While they were floating down the river as employes. The latter peacefully along the Indians fired upon theory seems more the credible. At any them from ambush. The first volley rate, when all of the others of the ' killed one of the group and his body ' party were massacred by Sioux In- plunged overboard. A rattling fire from ' Mans the lives of he and his wife were the bushes followed and the miners spared, hers because she was a mem- sprang for their guns, the steering -oar : her of the tribe, his because she pleaded forgotten. for him. The current at that point was swift. Told Story to Friend The boat went upon a rock and a hole Lavelle knew of the gold. He him- was stove in the square prow through self searched for it in vain, and need- which the water poured. They fought log help, told the story to another, until dusk from behind the bulwarks who in turn confided It to Emerson. of their vessel. Their ammunition gave The departure of the gold hunters out. The Indians took advantage of from Virginia City was but the in- their opportunity and swam out to cident of a day. Their absence went Mirth their bloody work. Numbers of unnoted. That was true also of their the miners already had been killed leaving Fort Benton. Hundreds of men during the day, and the few that re- in those early days returned to cAvlli- mained had no chance against the , zation by the river route. Their mode horde of redskins that closed in on ' of travel was so common as to attract them under a protecting rifle fire of little or no attention. They would build their comrades from the shore. Only their own boat, stock it with necessary Pierre Lavelle and his Indian wife supplies and cast off. If misfortune were spared. befell the craft or any of its occupants, Indians Stripped Bodies those who survived told the story. In The Indians stripped the bodies of this instance, however, none survived, their victims and threw them into the except, as stated, the squaw man. La- river from the waterlogged boat. After velle. He, it would seem, did not reveal looting the craft of rifles and provis- it so long as there seemed to exist a ions, they pushed it off the rock. It hope for personal gain by reason of his filled with water and sank slowly to knowledge, and when that hope faded, the bottom. The Indians knew nothing olf the gold which it carried to the 4 \ bottom and Levelle did not tell them ME STAY at Half Million Dollars in Montana Golid Dust Lost m Missouri River in 65 Never Has Been Found S OMEWIIEBE beneath the ever shifting sands of the restless, turgid waters of the Missouri river, or buried beneath the soil of one of its former channels, now left high and dry by the treachery of the current, lies is half million dollars in Montana gold dust. The treasure was wrung from the rich pockets and sluice boxes of Alder gulch in sweat and toil and hardship of pioneers: it went to Its secret resting place bap- tized in the blood of its owners; the mystery of its location, at first gUarded by disaster and misfortune which be- fell those who sought it, and always uncertain, has become more so with the receding years. Since the death of J. G. Emerson of Basin, more than 35 years ago, no one has ever searched for it. The story of the lost treasure, which came to Emerson third hand, he be- lieved implicitly and until his last moment, almost, he had hopes that some day he would find it. Its location, according to the now legendary tales told about it, was two days boat travel, as distance on the river was made by the craft which plied the river in the '60's, above old Fort Rice in North Dakota, which would probably place It by today's reckoning, 25 or 30 miles below Bismarck. Indiana Sank Boat The gold was lost by a party of ar- gonauts who had made their pile in Alder gulch and were returning with their riches to their eastern homes. They were massacred by Indians, their boat destroyed. Their wealth, unknown to the Indians sank with the wreck •of their craft. Its weight alone would guarantee that it is now, after 72 years, not far from where it went down, for f th racing Another Armistice ID) ay • Thursday, Nov. 11, 1937, marks the 19th anniversary of the Armistice which brought hostilities along the western front in France to a close In 1918. The passing years have impressed the American veterans of the World war with the deep and abiding significance of that fateful 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of that year of 1918. It was a Joyously -acclaimed Armistice. Today war clouds shadow the horizon, and no man may safely say that the Armistice which 19 years ago was believed to have brought to a con- clusion that \war to end wars\ has for all time assured honorable peace to a 'war -torn world. All that America and Americans can hope and pray for in these om- inous times is for a continuation of that peace which has blessed this nation since Nov. 11, 1918, but every thinking man and woman in the United States today must of a certainty appreciate the fact that the only way to insure a continuance of this peace is adequate national defense. No one knows the prime necessity of that better than the veteran of front-line combatant service who has experienced the hellishness of modern warfare at first hand. Witness, the sentiments expressed by the outstanding, thinking leader* of the American Legion who assembled in New York Cfty recently in their organization's national convention. Those men, those veterans of active service \over there,\ those veterans who know what war means and is, said, in effect, \The United States must, have a strong army and navy, adequately officered, manned and equipped. Then, and then only, will those powers which recognize and' re- spect nothing but strength, grant this beloved nation of ours the only boon which it constantly seeks: perpetual peace.\ Ours the mission, this Armistice day, to respect the sacred trust of those who made the Armistice a fact in 1918. s From the November issue of the Recruiting News. Permission granted to reproduce. currents of the Big Muddy have not he disclosed it then only to one man. even the gigantic power o e the strength to do much with the tre- The 20 miners built a crude scow at, mendous weight of a half million Fort Benton. The boat was crude and dollars in gold dust and nuggets. rough, but it was strong and seaworthy and calculated to take its passengers As men searched fruitlessly for the over the most turbulent of the Missouri lost fortune down the years, Its ex- river's waters in safety. istence has been doubted, the truth of Each man's gold was tied in indi- - the story regarding it pooh ssoo hed ' , vidual sacks, labeled with his name There seems no doubt, however, but and secreted in a water tight comport - that it is real and that the only thin ment in the bottom of the scow, and lacking to prove it is knowledge o covered with floor boards. Above the where to dig. treasure box were piled provisions and It was in 1865 that a party of miners equipment for the trip, guns and am - from Virginia City started for their munition. • HOME FROM WORK? Sik NOT WHEN GENUINE BAYER ASPIRIN EASES HEADACHE IN A fEW MINUTES The inexpensive way to ease head- aches — if you want fast results— is with Bayer Aspirin. The instant the pain starts, simply take 2 Bayer tablets with a half glass of water. Usually in a few minutes relief arrives. Bayer tablets are quick -acting because they disintegrate in a few seconds — ready to start their work of relief almost immediately after taking. It costs only 20 or 30 to relieve most headaches — when you get the new economy tin. You pay only 25 cents for 24 tablets — about 10 apiece. Make sure to get the genuine by insisting on Bayer Aspirin. 15 C Fon u TABLETS VIIrtUallY 1 cent a tablet It. Lavelle and his wife remained with the Indians for some time but left as soon as they could do so without ex- citing suspicion or bringing down upon themselves the anger of the redmen. Lavelle enlisted in the army at Fort Rice, thinking to remain near the spot where the treasure was lost in the hope that at some time he would be able to recover it. He found, however, that there was little possibility of finding it alone. He needed help. He took into his con- fidence a man named Richard Pope, an Ohio Quaker, and Pope's son. The three went up the river and Lavelle tried to locate the spot where the boat had sunk. After several days search Lavelle found the spot where he said the boat had gone down. But it was no longer under water. It was a sandbar, formed during the intervening months by the changing current. They dug and un- covered the prow of the vessel. As they worked they were attacked by Indians, and as they fled for cover to the brush along the river bank, Lavelle was shot and killed. Pope and his son reached cover and escaped. They returned to Fort Rice but made no further effort to locate the gold. In 1867 the elder Pope was in Fort Benton. Since the abortive search for the lost gold his son had died of fever. He was the only living man who knew the secret of the lost store of gold dust. J. D. Emerson, afterwards and for many years agent for the Great North- ern railroad at Basin, mining camp between Butte and Helena, was at that time stationed at Port Benton in the employ of the Northwestern For Co. He became acquainted with Pope. The old man was without money and an- xious to return to his old home in Ohio. Emerson was planning a trip down the Missouri river to Omaha in a small boat and offered Pope passage. They were alone in Emerson's boat, but traveled in company with a fleet of other similar craft. Pair Decide on Search On the way down the river Pope told Emerson the story of the lost treasure and at Fort Rice the two de- cided to leave the boat fleet and go back up river to search for the gold, a distance of 30 miles. But disaster once more guarded the treasure. When 10 miles from the spot they sought, their boat sprang a leak and sunk be- fore they could get it ashore. Pope was nearly drowned, Emerson saving him only with the greatest difficulty. They were forced to give up the search and return to Fort Rice. The old man never recovered from the hardships of the trip and died soon afterwards. Before passing away he made Emerson promise that if he ever recovered the treasure he would share it with the Pope family. Men have searched and dug but the treasure remains today where the cur- rent of the Missouri river may have taken it. Until his death, Emerson held hope he would some day find it. About 40 years ago he made a trip to the locality and established to his own satisfaction that the spot where the boat sank was then a broad, sandy flat, covered with a sparse growth of cottonwood trees. The height of land overlooking the river, the clump of trees and the general appearance of the lo- cality remained fresh in his mind until .the last. But the gold, he could not find. SOME HUNTERS j GET ALL BREAKS GREAT FALLS MAN ENDS HUNT FOR PHEASANTS BY BAG- GING DEER Gordon Mattson Kills Six Point Buck With Shotgun Containing Ordinary Duck Loads; Bird Hunting Tame Pastime Following Incident. Gordon Mattson, Great Falls resident, went hunting pheasants one day recently. He returned without a 'pheasant but didn't complain- as many hunters would. Mattson, through no choice of his own, became a big game hunter instead. In company with several other hunters, Mattson headed south of Great Falls armed with a shotgun and ordinary duck loads. About 18 miles out, near the Hound creek bridge, the party left their car and headed out into the brush. Matt- son heard a sound at his right. He thought it was a companion rejoining him. The snap and crash of the brush grew louder—too loud. Mattson turned. Only 100 feet or so away he saw a six -point buck deer. There was only one thing to do. Mattson brought his shotgun to his shoulder and fired. The buck shuddered with the impact and started to move. Mattson fired again and knew he had his deer. 'After the sudden introduction to big game hunting, he found chas- ing pheasants through the brush a tame pastime indeed. 0 - JOHN HITCH APPOINTED John ll. Ditch of Lewistown has been named a member of the board of trustees of the state historical library to fill the vacancy caused by the death of David miser. who also was librarian. A meeting of the board will be held shortly to name a successor to the librarmn s post 1VI ontaila RailiroaderDletires After 48 Years of Service Michael Henry Riley, 65, alight- today. Improvements in railroad trans- ed from the cab of the North- portation have been remarkable. And ern Pacific's North Coast Limited the system is still getting better. If I train at exactly 6:06 o'clock one do any extensive traveling I'll do it all night recently—one minute after on the train. arriving at the station—and thus „I suppose I'll take a few short completed half of ' his last railroad jatmts on nice days,\ he said, \but I run after 48 years work. The fol- think most of my time will be spent lowing afternoon he piloted the North Coast Limited to Missoula, around home, toasting my shins and entertaining my wife with stories of the where his wife greeted him. They roa d . . went together to a comfortable , home, and began the peaceful ex- - istence of retirement. Mr. Riley strode down the platform! Don't Split Your Profits as he briefly reviewed his long years of experience. Not a railroad worker withinshouting distance failed to ' I shout, \Hiyah Mike!\ Those who were nearer his path shook his hand to wish him health and happiness, and to express their regret that hewill no longer work among them. • \I started wiping cars in the round- house at Missoula in 1889,\ he said. \In 1890 I became a fireman.\ Four years later the nation's indus- tries squabbled among themselves and the railroad workers were forced into a spectacular strike. \Those years were terrible,\ Mr. Riley said. \Prom 1894 through 1896 I roamed about the country, tramping, hoping each hour that I might find some work. Wondering if ever I would pull through the trying times.\ He did pull through, with colors fly- ing. The strike ended. He became a fireman on the Rock Island railroad, in 1897. Three years later he became an eng ineer, returning to Missoula in 1903. \Trains before 1910—and even until Only three or four years ago can hardly be compared to modern trains.\ he said. \Just plain wooden coaches. That's all we had in the old days. They were I slow, drafty, and cumbersome. And six I of those old engines couldn't pull a! modern steel train as smoothly andj dependably as one engine pulls a train ' [SHIP YOUR FURS DIRECT TO FRONTIER Z°: TOP Marketi prices Being direct receivers with huge out- let.. you are sure of getting the very top prices for your raw furs. Remem- ber. not a single penny is deducted for commissions, handling, shipping or anything else. CHECKS AIR MAILED SAME DAY shipment is received. We Pay all parcel post and express eh a Offers telegraphed on large lots. Furs held els and our cheek air mailed with the offer, upon 101Ir request. FRONTIER RAW' FUR CORP. 115-117 West 27th Si. New York Er a FREE — Latest Authentic Market Report and Tam. 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This oil beats others for fast free flow, but faster than anything ever yet flowed, OIL -PLATING is ready to lubricate. It's never all down in the crankcase waiting for a \push\ through the cold narrow places. All Winter—all the hours your car stands cold—OIL-PLATING remains continually fastened where it's needed to speed your starter and safeguard every warm-up. You change to more mileage too, with Conoco Germ Processed oil, from Your Mileage Merchant. Write for \The Story of Oil -Plating\ .. Dept. 5, Conoco, Ponca City, Okla GERM PROCESSED OIL

The Flathead Courier (Polson, Mont.), 12 Nov. 1937, located at <>, image provided by MONTANA NEWSPAPERS, Montana Historical Society, Helena, Montana.