Money--or, in this case, GOLD--is the root of all evil. This gold belongs to Harley Shanks, and he wants it back, no matter what he has to do to get it!
Edward Levy's DEN of Horror.
A U.S. Branch Mint opened in Dahlonega, Georgia in 1838, coining more than six million dollars in gold before being destroyed during an attack by Union troops in June of 1861. In April of 1861, two months before its destruction, the branch mint was seized by the Confederacy and approximately 1500-2500 special issue 1861-D ten dollar gold coins were produced.
The gold coins stored in the mint were confiscated by the Union troops and carried away in 23 strongboxes. Along with a store of other gold, one of the strongboxes, in particular, also held 200 of these 1861-D special issue ten dollar gold coins. During transport, this strongbox was stolen--or rather re-stolen back--by four Confederate soldiers, and was never seen again.
Go down this page to read an excerpt from The Root of all Evil.
When Harley Shanks arrived home from working a double-shift at the sawmill, it was late and he was bone-tired.
"Where's Lucy?" he asked Mama, not seeing any signs of his wife, Lucille.
"She said she was goin' to the 'moving pictures' with a friend of her's," Mama replied, sceptically. She stopped her rocking in the rocking chair and put the Bible she was reading down on her lap. "What talkie house would still be playin', this time of the night?"
"Why, I'm sure she'll be home soon. She always comes back late when she goes to the talkies, Mama," Harley told her, his voice not sounding as sure as he would have liked.
"Harley, I make no bones about it," Mama told him, looking him squarely in the eye. "I never did like that wife of yours. I just plain don't trust her. No siree, not a lick."
"No cause for you to feel like that," Harley spoke up in his wife's defense. "Lucy's a good girl, an' I trust her."
"Well I Don't!" Mama told him flatly. "And that's important to what I gotta tell you, Son."
"Whatever's the matter, Mama? What's wrong? Ain't you feelin' good?" Harley asked, concerned and frightened by the sudden seriousness in his mother's voice; by that look on her face.
"I'm feelin' just fine," Mama told him with a dismissing wave of her hand. "That ain't the issue. What's important here is, you gotta promise--gotta swear--that you won't tell Lucy--won't tell nobody what I'm fixin' to tell you. Just hear it an' know it, that's all. Do ya swear, Harley--do ya swear on this Bible?" She held the Bible out to him.
"I swear, Mama. If you say it's that important to you, then I swear it to God that I won't tell no one," Harley vowed, placing his right hand on the Bible.
"Well, sit down, boy, an' make yourself comfortable, 'cause I got a story to tell you--a story my daddy told me, when I was growed; a story that his daddy told him." She waited until Harley had seated himself across from her, and was looking at her expectantly.
"It's about gold, Harley. Gold!" she told him, her eyes sparkling at the mention of it. "A whole strongbox full of it!"
"Sweet Jesus, Mama! What are you talkin' about?! What gold?!" Harley asked, looking stunned.
"I'm talkin' about a strongbox full of gold, stolen by your great-grandaddy during the Civil War," she explained. "The way I heard it, your great-grandaddy an' three other southern boys robbed a Union gold wagon, an' made off with one of the strongboxes. That was all they could tote, heavy as it was. Well, great-grandaddy got into a beef with the other three boys over the gold, an' he ended up killin' them dead. Then, draggin' that strongbox behind him all the way across two states, he brought that gold to home, to this place, an' here is where he hid it. Hid it real good."
"Hid it--where, Mama?" Harley asked, still dumbfounded.
Martha Shanks then told her son, Harley, exactly where the gold was hidden.
Keeping his promise to his mother, Harley Shanks never told his wife, Lucille--not another living soul--about the gold.
When Harley Shanks caught Lucille cheating on him, and was sent to prison for murdering her lover--still, he kept the secret of the gold.
Through eighteen long years in prison--still, he kept the secret of the gold.
Now he's been released from prison and he's going home--back to his land; back to his inheritance; back to his GOLD!
But, eighteen years is a long time. Is the gold still there?