Underground Discovery & Exploration

Underground Discovery & Exploration

Knights of the Golden Circle In Situ

Knights of the Golden Circle were fighting for a cause. The establishment of a new nation was that cause and that nation would include but not be limited to areas known as the Golden Crescent. To be successful at hunting their sights, I have found you must consider their purpose. The James Brothers were not the outlaws recorded history designates them to be, but were employees and zealous members of a cause. I was involved with a group years back that had a document showing the monthly stipend that Jesse James received from the KGC. Jesse and Frank were members of their local Baptist church, both were in the choir and Frank even held the position of treasurer! So their larceny was not for wealth, but for their agenda.

Research the groups of that time period such as the KKK (a police arm for the KGC), the Sons of Liberty, the Copperheads, and other secret societies of that time period. Many members of one group were also members of a second secret society. Come to know their names and see where they traveled, positions in local politics, benevolent societies, etc. Come to know their habits, etc. Check out where they stayed and their land holdings (either theirs or any company they were related with). Then begin to see the land they owned, where they stayed and what they did within the light of their cause! Why did Jesse and the gang go all the way to Minnesota to rob a bank when they were traveling south all those times? Do you see how you must observe the large picture before you try to locate a cache area? Even if you have sign in a small area, stand back and get an overview. Most times, signs are on the way to treasure, not on top of the treasure. (X never, never, never marks the spot!) Ask yourself, why were they hiding this particular cache? Was it for easy access and quick recovery? Was it because they intended long term storage for future use? Was it hidden quickly to keep it out of the hands of their enemy? If you can discover this, then you have a leg up in the recovery.

The Knights of the Golden Circle were great deceivers. Knowledge of their operations, signs and methodology has never been openly revealed, but is learned here a little and there a little. When researching their modus operandi and operations, there are several places to search. Local histories, both oral and written, are invaluable. Check with local and national historical societies, museums and senior citizens. Go to the nursing homes and enquire of the oldest citizens what the observations mean that you have noticed. “I saw a pair of boots nailed to the fencepost over at the old Jackson place. Why would someone do that?” I will tell you this, if you are in Arkansas and see that pair of boots, don’t go on that land! Keep walking on past that property without stopping in. By the way, these seasoned citizens want to talk to others, pass on their knowledge, and it will lift their spirits as well. So do a good deed for them while finding out additional information for your project.

Search them out under several groups, perhaps some local names that are not used elsewhere. More popular names such as Sons of Liberty, Copperheads, etc. reveal the international involvement but local groups also carried on the cause. Check out their old secret meeting places. Watch for signs in trees, rocks, rocks laid out in a pattern and if you discover an old ladies outhouse, check for signs around that. How can you tell if it was a ladies? In those days the outhouses were marked on the entry door. The men’s room featured a star on the door and the ladies room featured a crescent moon on the door. I have found meeting information etc. is usually near the ladies outhouse. I am not sure why but I believe it to be due to gentlemen not going near the established ladies room so it was easier to post notifications that are more public and retain secrecy. In those days, ladies did not participate in insurrections as a whole; it was primarily men.

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