me, Saturna Robbie

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

The Tumacacori Mission

This is what I found on Google about the old Tumacacori Mission.

According to those who search for buried treasure in Arizona, there’s a fortune hidden beneath the floors of Tumacacori, the old mission near Tubac. The legends say that the church was once not only a place of worship, but also a mill and smelter for a gold and silver mining operation run by Jesuit missionaries in the first half of the nineteenth century.

There are many are a couple.  In one, the missionaries learned they were being exiled back to Spain so they loaded nearly 3,000 burros with precious metal, carried the treasure to the mine, then buried the entrance in the hope that they’d come back and retrieve it. But they were never allowed to leave Spain, so now an estimated $25 million in gold and silver may lie hidden beneath the sacred ground.

Tumacacori, the old mission near Tubac.

Or so the story goes.

In the second version, the missionaries found a rich silver mine nearby and forced the Opata Indians to work it for them. After the ore was smelted into bars, it was stored in a huge room under the mission.
The Indians also used the room for religious ceremonies, which were a combination of their own paganism and the missionaries’ preaching. At one point, so the story says, they sacrificed a young woman to their gods when she refused to marry a chieftain. When the priests found out, they drove the Indians away then sealed the mine without recovering the wealth.

Or so the story goes.

The hiding place often assumes the form of a secret "escape" tunnel, running underground from the church to the bank of the Santa Cruz, over a quarter mile eastward. The theory is that this tunnel was for escape in case Apaches attacked, and that in some part of its interior the walls are lined with rotting sacks of gold.

WOW! This looks like it will be a great adventure. Who will we meet? Does it involve the lost treasure of Tumacacori?  How did he/she/it find us?

We decided after a brief conference to hike down the Anza trail to the Mission...that way we would not have to deal with Border patrols and all that stuff. With Inka's flashing collar and Margaret's Miner's head lamp we would be able to see our way along the river bank...and BlackBerry has a flashlight in an emergency.

We turned towards the trail.....Lacey said she still thought Mom should have come with us. Tansy told her to quit whining. Blue said he would take care of Lacey....Inka was ahead of the Gang with Margaret....Hurley was sniffing every rock and plant for signs of????.....and I/Me/Robbie brought up the rear. The Cottonwood  trees were whispering as we passed by and I heard a coyote howl. 

Sometimes I wish I were a bit bigger dog and not quite so white ..........