Latest Story of Lost Silver Mine in Searcy County

Re-Printed from the Marshall Mountain Wave  -  Friday May 30, 1924

 

It is believed that the lost silver mine for which many have searched in Searcy County for the last seventy-five years and in quest of which some have devoted much and their lives and fortunes have been dissipated, has at last been discovered by a daughter of Hulse Tyler near her father’s farm in the rough country between Bear and Calf Creeks about ten miles from St. Joe, and five miles from Gilbert.

The tradition prevalent in this part of  the state is that the section of the country embraced in the above named territory and known as the Silver Hill settlement, has been the scene of mining operation by the Indians in prehistoric days and that later the Spaniards had mined much silver in that locality.  The story is that with the varying fortunes of war between the Spaniards and the Indians and their enemies, that the location of the mine was lost.

The story is also related by old timers that about seventy-five years ago, a man by the name of Tabor located one of the mines.  It is said he uncovered a cave of almost pure silver and that he began to mold silver coins.  He was apprehended for counterfeiting and was forced to leave the country, but the place of his mining operations remained a secret.

About thirty years ago, Mark Boyd, who came to this locality from Little Rock, purchased 1200 acres of land in the Silver Hill neighborhood.  Soon he announced he had been visited by an old Indian, who blindfolded him and led him several miles through the rough country, finally leading him into a cave.  There the hood was removed and Boyd was allowed to view a great accumulation of pure silver and high grade ore.  Continuing his story he related that he was again blindfolded in the cave and conducted away for several miles before the blindfold was removed and he was restored to liberty.

Then began Boyd’s search for the hidden treasure, which extended over many years.  He hired men to assist him and numerous holes they bored into the hillside in the Silver Hill locality are still visible.  Boyd persisted in the search until he used up all his substance and eventually he was forced to sell his land to pay the debts he had incurred in his prospecting operations.  Later he enlisted some friends in Little Rock in the venture and these spent considerable money in the prospecting with no results.  Almost penniless, Boyd left this country for Texas, where he died four years ago.  Many of his kinfolks still live here.

Twelve years ago a large mining company was organized and bought a large tract of land in the neighborhood but they too were unsuccessful in locating any mineral.  Now the story which is being related is that the daughter of Hulse Tyler, while hunting for a cow which had strayed away, found an opening to a cave in an almost inaccessible gulch.  The entrance to the cave was overgrown with vines and brush, a recent storm had blown aside leaving it partly exposed.  She at once summoned other members of the family and the cave was explored.  It is claimed that the silver was found as described with the mining tools, which had been there seventy-five years.   Now that the deed is on file, the story has come out.

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