Nevada - Nye County
A gambler's cache of $3,000 was buried by him near the McCann's Summit, a few miles north of Tybo. The gambler intended to retrieve the cash, but was killed a few days later.
Located eight miles off U.S. Highway 6 in central Nye County, Tybo was as lively a mining camp as any in the state in the 1870s. Like many Nevada camps, Tybo has its share of lost treasure stories.
The citizens of Tybo were reputed to be distrustful of banks. They were more
inclined to bury their money than entrust it to institutions that could be
robbed any day of the week. How many of these caches were lost or forgotten is
not known with any certainty, but surely something is still out there.
Another lost treasure story concerns a gambler who happened into town on a
payday weekend in 1876 and picked up some $3,000 in gold coins in a marathon
poker game. There was talk around town that he had used a marked deck and
several men were said to be planning to waylay him when he departed.
The rumors got back to him and he had the driver of the Belmont stage stop in
Kiln Canyon, just out of town. Walking out through the sagebrush with his money
in a canvas sack, he returned empty-handed a few minutes later, telling the
driver that he would be back when he thought it was safe. Three days later, he
was shot and killed in a Belmont saloon.
The ghost town of Tybo is located in the Hot Creek Range in Nye County. It was a bustling mining town in the 1870’s and it residents were notoriously distrustful of banks. It is believed that much of what was taking from the mines was buried for safe keeping in the vicinity, although no specific legends as too any one cache stands out, many say several undiscovered caches remain buried and forgotten in the area.
A gambler is reported to have spent one weekend cleaning the Tybo miners out of about $3,000 in gold coins during a wild poker game. Rumor began that the gambler had used a marked deck and soon the miners made plans to jump the gambler and recover their losses when he prepared to leave town.
These rumors made their way back to the man, who’d
boarded the Belmont stage. A short distance east of Tybo in Kiln Canyon
the gambler had the driver stop. He walked into the sagebrush with his
money in a canvas sack but returned to the stage without it. He told the
driver he’d be back for it later when things had cooled off. The stage
proceeded to Belmont unmolested, but three days later the gambler was killed in
a gunfight in a Belmont Saloon, never having returned to Tybo for his cache.
In the 1870's and 1880's, Tybo was one of Nevada's more
important mining communities. The population was nearing 1,000 residents with
numerous businesses supplying every need. The town boasted such refinements as a
brick school, a literary society, a newspaper, Good Templar's lodge, and a post
office. But the most important, as usual, were the saloons and gambling halls.
On paydays they were definitely the hub of the town.
One particular payday a gambler from Belmont, then the seat of Nye County, came to town to relieve the miners of their wages. Within two nights he had hit a fabulous run of luck, winning more then $3,000. The third day, though, he decided it was time to leave before someone took offense at his winnings. He had already heard whispers that a number of those who had lost heavily in his games were beginning to talk of forcefully regaining their money.
The gambler boarded the stage at the edge of town and headed back toward Belmont with his winnings contained in a canvas ore sack. The driver later described him as being armed, nervous, and looking as though he expected to be ambushed any moment.
At McCann's Summit, a few miles west of Tybo at the head of the canyon, the driver usually stopped for a few minutes to let the horses blow. Here the gambler handed a $5 gold piece to the driver and asked him to wait at the charcoal kilns about a mile down the road. He then took his sack of money and disappeared into the trees.
The driver did as he had been asked and halted at the kilns. He later stated that the gambler couldn't have hidden his sack very far from the road as the stage had only been waiting some ten minutes when he showed up empty-handed. He again boarded the coach for Belmont, telling the driver he would return for his canvas sack after the Tybo people had cooled off a bit. He was never able to make that return trip though, as within the week a poor loser at a Belmont poker table ended the gambler's life with a well-placed shot from a cap and ball derringer.
It wasn't too long before Tybo began to decline. The story of the gambler's cache was almost forgotten so there is a chance that it was never located. It may still lie today in a shallow, hand-dug hole somewhere along that mile between McCann's Summit and the kilns.
Nevada Lost Mines & Buried Treasure - By Douglas McDonald, Nevada Publications, 1981, Page 69-70.
The Society has yet to research this claim.