ARIZONA, USA — It’s arguably the most famous legend in all of Arizona: A gold mine of unfathomable riches in the Superstition Mountains east of Phoenix.
And no one knows where it is.
The legend goes like this: in the late 1800s, Jacob Waltz found a gold mine that would make him fabulously wealthy.
Phoenix being the small town that it was, and Waltz being elderly, there was nothing to spend that wealth on, so he kept it quiet.
On his deathbed, he told a handful of people about the mine and gave them directions. Fairly generic directions, but he gave them nonetheless.
At the time, “Dutchman” was a catch-all for anyone from the general area of Germany/The Netherlands/wherever, so the mine became the “Lost Dutchman Mine."
People have searched for it ever since to no avail. Some have even died in the mountains searching.
Those that roam the mountains looking for Waltz’s gold call themselves Dutch Hunters. Wayne Tuttle has been Dutch Hunting for most of his life.
“All of us are curious,” Tuttle said, walking at the base of the Superstitions. “Why do we watch Dateline? Why do we watch mystery shows? Why do we watch mystery movies?”
Tuttle hasn’t found anything either (that he’ll claim in any case), but he says it’s more about the search for the gold than it is about the gold itself.
Would you tell anyone?
“if I found it, would I tell anybody?” he said. “I probably wouldn’t.”
Because a lost gold mine is only a lost gold mine as long as it’s…lost.
If someone found it, the legend would be broken. The allure would disappear, and a thing of mystery would be lost.
Tuttle said he hopes that if someone ever does find the gold, they keep it as quiet as Jacob Waltz did 150 years ago.
“My hope is always the person that finds it doesn't try to make a book or brag about it or want to do a film or TV show,” Tuttle said. “Take the gold, take what you need, and do good with it.”
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