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California gold discovery spurs rush of theories

March 5, 2014

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Word last week that a California couple found $10 million in gold coins on their property has set off a Gold Rush of theories over who left behind all that cash.

One is that Jesse James’ gang deposited it in hopes of someday financing a second Civil War. Another claims the coins originally belonged to long-ago robber Black Bart.

The theory gaining the most traction this week is that the hoard is made up of most of the $30,000 in gold coins that Walter Dimmick stole from the U.S. Mint in San Francisco in 1901. The coins were never recovered.

But Mint spokesman Adam Stump said Tuesday the government has done its research and can’t link the couple’s coins to the theft.

Rare coin dealer Don Kagin represents the couple. He says they think someone in the mining industry once occupied their land and hid away the coins over time. The coins have a face value of about $28,000.

Why the owner never came back for the coins, well, that’s another mystery.

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