The Devil’s Tombstone and the Dutch Schultz Hidden Treasure

lost treasure dutch schultz

Devil’s Tombstone

The treasure of Dutch Schultz remains a mystery.  Many questions about its outcome are still asked, and because answers to these are not decisive enough, the possibility that this is an actual lost treasure, still to be found, exists.

It’s a fact that when Dutch Schultz was under investigation by the Authorities, he was concerned with being incarcerated.  Because of this, it is known he had a special safebox made to hold, and then hide, much of his illegal wealth in.

Schultz was a successful 1920’s/30’s mobster. He had lots of cash, jewels, and other belongings he didn’t want the government to get their hands on. Where he put it, so this wouldn’t happen, is the mystery.  And then there is the question, does it remain there?

The story, and there are variations, but the main one goes that Schultz and his trusted friend, Rosencrantz, traveled to upstate New York, Phoenicia, to bury his SafeBox. This was to keep his riches safe during his trial, and so he could later retrieve the box of treasures after he was cleared from charges or released from jail.

What happened though is he was shot down killed before he ever returned to his buried treasure.

Many speculate, since others were aware he hid a treasure, that it was found long ago by someone else (other mobsters, locals, etc).  But there isn’t evidence of this.  And so there still is the question, where is it, today?

There are thoughts, because Schultz’s last words mentioned ‘Satan’, and there are landmarks near Phoenicia named after the Devil, that this hints towards/confirms the hiding of his box near these places.

I visited the area and saw the ‘Devil’s Face’ and the ‘Devil’s Tombstone’.  Totally awesome geographical features that could certainly be used to reference and orientate oneself to a secret hiding ‘spot’.

I talk about the Devil’s Face in a previous article.

The Devil’s Tombstone, however, sits along one of the roads heading out of Phoenicia.  It is before the Devil’s Face and on the other side of the road.  The immediate area surrounding the ‘Tombstone’ has been searched, dug up, but nothing discovered in the past.  But if Schultz’s last words were actually referring to his treasure, they could indicate only that the he used the Devil’s Tombstone (or Devil’s Face) as a point of reference.

His last words were said to be, ‘Don’t let Satan draw you too fast’ (possibly leading to the tombstone and death).  One question is, did he hide it there or somewhere else nearby?  And his words merely offer a general location, not the actual location.  Could it between the two landmarks, of the Devil’s Face and the Devil’s Tombstone?

One may never know unless the treasure is eventually found.

It was a great adventure to visit these ‘historical’ mobster spots…..  The area is rugged, but beautiful.  And so if you are in the area of ‘Phoenicia’, definitely check them out.

Best of luck with whatever you seek!

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8 Responses

  1. astree says:

    .

    Intriguing, thank-you for the article, Jenny.

    ‘Don’t let Satan draw you too fast’

    Here is a map of the area, with Phonecia several miles to the southwest.

    https://www.google.com/maps/@42.1720482,-74.2024131,13.32z

    North of Devil’s Tombstone is Hunter Mountain. (I ski’ed it years ago). Just north of Devil’s Tombstone is the Schoharie Creek, making a “U” shape (“draw U”) … hunter aquire food, so not fasting .. “don’t … draw U, to fast”. Do you know if that connection has been explored?

    Always lots to explore,
    astree

  2. MartinS says:

    Here’s an apparent transcript from Dutch’s interrogation before he died. Seems like the guy had a lot to say and we have a lot to decipher! Or he was just delusional.

    http://feastofhateandfear.com/archives/dutch.html

  3. astree says:

    Thank-you, Martin. It sure read like mostly delusional, makes me wonder about my comment on the “don’t draw Satan too fast”.

  4. Jenny says:

    He was believed to be going in and out of delusional fits……..and so if the treasure was still hidden, and it was definitely thought to be, then he might have had it on his mind and some of what he said might relate to it.

    He valued his ‘treasure’…..and so I feel it certainly could have passed through his mind before his death…

    I think there could be clues in his ‘last words’…..not in all that he said…..but here and there….they are worth contemplating in connection to where he was known to have traveled (like Phoenicia), and of the ways of him and the time.

    It’s interesting….

    • MartinS says:

      I completely agree Jenny. I bet the “treasure” was weighing heavily on his mind if it was still hidden.

      Sorting it out all out would be a challenge and would take lots of research to connect all the names, places, events, etc. And all without the apparent logic of pre-planned clues.

      As soon as I’m done with The Thrill of the Chase and the Bossall Treasure, I’ll start on this one! 🙂

  5. DanS says:

    Reading Paul Sann’s account of the story in “Kill the Dutchman!” is the most interesting and insightful source on the matter. The treasure (strongbox) is only mentioned once in the entire book (page 77). The paragraph is about Schultz’s barrister (lawyer), J Richard Davis, talking about some money the Dutchman owed him, and describes what will probably be in the strongbox if someone finds it:

    “The barrister, for his part, said he never knew where the Schultz rainy day money, once estimated at $7 million [1932 dollars], had gone. He said the Dutchman used to keep his spare bills, always in the larger denominations and frequently in gold banknotes because the guy just adored that kind of paper, in a specially made steel box three feet long and two feet wide. He said he meant to go hunt it up himself some day because his deceased client owed him, oh, $100,000 or so. He didn’t say whether he would divvy up anything beyond the 100 large with Frances or any of Arthur’s other bereft survivors if he ever happened to stumble on that dandy box.”

    The book does give valuable insight into the man. It mentions the cops should’ve brought a woman into Schultz’s hospital room, and told him it was his mother and he would’ve said anything they wanted….but nobody back then hired women. Their loss (and ours). So a bunch of male cops tried to strongarm a gangster on his deathbed and by instinct he kept his mouth shut.

    Sann’s book isn’t the entire story; there are a few other invaluable sources out there. I don’t think Phoenecia is the only spot to search; I think the search area has to be drastically widened, all of upstate New York is fair game, but south of Albany (where he turned himself in). It’s a huge search area, But like MartinS mentioned, putting the timeline together will help a lot. There’s almost nothing solid to go on.

    • Jenny Kile says:

      Thanks DanS for your comments. The possibility of how to find lost treasure is always fun to ponder!

      I actually don’t have that book and will need to look into it. Does it mention any other places where Schultz liked to visit? The idea for Phoenecia being well liked is it was a place he was known to go — before he got shot…… but what are some other places? That’s a question I would like to research more…. and visit/scout out those places as well. I’ll put it on my list…:)

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