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SPANISH MINE MONUMENTS IN THE BRADSHAWS?

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Has anyone noticed these Spanish Mine Monuments, (in the heart of gold country), in the Bradshaw Mts? I first ran across these huge stone figures in the 1990's while out nugget hunting, and went back a few years later to take some photographs. I was 4-wheeling along a jeep trail, crossing one creek and hill after another, and as I topped a rise and started down toward the next creek,  the Indian Head Monument (my profile photo),  jumped out at me. It looked amazingly real and detailed and was near the trail so you couldn't miss it. I got out and examined it close up to confirm that it had been carved, shaped, and painstakingly worked  by human hands.

Interestingly, I had just finished the  book, "Spanish Monuments and Trail Markers to Treasure in the United States", which gives a historical overview of the subject from the research and perspective of author, Charles A. Kenworthy. The attached photographs of rock monument figures are similar to those shown in Kenworthy's publication and depict what are purported to be trail guides that were hand carved by Spanish stone masons.  Kenworthy's research indicates that they were created sometime between 1560 and 1760 when the Spanish explorers were combing the western states in their search for gold. These monuments reportedly served as directional reference points and guide posts during the ingress and egress of miners and travelers who were involved in the mining and administration of concealed Spanish gold mines.

2005972523_POODLE-PLUTO-3.jpg.db80c84861

I would venture a guess that many gold hunters who passed through this area may have seen one or more of these stone figures, perhaps not knowing what they were, or understanding their potential significance. To generate possible interest in the subject, I thought I would post a few photographs and pose the following questions: Where in the Bradshaw Mts. are they located? Could there possibly be any Spanish gold mines in the Bradshaws that may yet remain concealed? Is there any way to find out?

Any one interested in additional information, with regards to author Kenworthy's notes and comments, please send me a pm. If the locations of the monuments are not identified and disclosed by a forum member following a short initial response period, I will post an update with general directional detail.
Mac (BMc)

 

INDIAN HEAD MONUMENT.PNG

2ND INDIAN HEAD.jpg

POODLE MINE MON (640x547) - Copy.jpg

ROYAL POODLE MON- BUSH.jpg

POODLE-   LOOKING UP.jpg

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What is it that makes you believe these are not natural? I've seen outcrops and dykes all over the world like these. Very familiar with the Bradshaw mountains, and these types of formations are quite common. Very interested to learn more.:)

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In New Mexico they built cairns, made drawings and had "sight rocks". They would pile a little ore on the very summit of the mountain that had a vein. They built arrastras. All these are still visible in most of the placer areas. I am not sure exactly what in these photos that you consider to be Spanish markings?

Why would a Spaniard re-arrange an outcrop to look like an "Indian head"? That would be my second question. I just does not make sense that they would do that. Nor does it make sense that these outcrops have been re-shaped by human hands. If they were shaped by masons they would have an obvious shape or symmetry to them. From the little the photos show I see no evidence that the formations have been shaped by human hands at all. :idunno:

No doubt they left signs and symbols to mark there way back to rich areas they found. I have never heard of them doing anything like this. Sure there were peaks and rock formations they navigated from. I don't see the benefit of them being carved.

I suppose I am one of those who do not understand their potential significance. Could you please explain what this would mean if they were indeed Spanish markings of some sort? What secrets would they reveal if one could interpret the significance of the Indian head? Would it point to some heretofore unknown rich placer in the Bradshaws? :)

Edited by Bedrock Bob

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Perceptions and opinions may vary (for differing reasons), of course.  That's what makes a horse race, or so they tell me. My observation of the rock structures in the field, even though they are crumbling somewhat, and the resemblance of the figures to those as described by Kenworthy, along with his voluminous pages of research results,  leads me to a similar conclusion as he has postulated. My view is that these rock structures I observed were worked by hand, and up close you can see tool marks, cuts, grooves and striations in the stone similar by example, as what is most noticeable when examining an arrowhead or other artifact that has been chipped and shaped. There is, in my opinion, a noted similarity between an actual "Poodle" (especially the head), and the profile of one of the figures shown in the photographs attached to my original post. Most notably, even in the photographs, you should be able to see the large cut out area of the mouth. It angles in, like cut facets of a gemstone. The eyes and nose are cut and formed and the slab sides of the rock are cut, chiseled, and smoothed. The purpose of the Poodle monuments, according to Kenworthy, was to identify to travelers,  the '' Royal", outbound trail from the mines. The idea was for any personnel  replacements, mine inspectors, etc. to be able to locate the trails and ultimately, the mines which were concealed during certain periods.

The Indian Head monuments were directional images as well, but also to denote danger and as a warning to be alert and on constant guard in this area. In his book, Kenworthy shows photographs of an actual concealed mine that his expedition discovered, while following Spanish markers and monuments, and includes photographs and considerable detail on "Paraje's" or rest stops for travelers. Kenworthy was interested  in unidentified reststops and discusses the importance of the Prajes and ways to identify them as a possible place where valuable caches may have been left behind and never recovered.

The following is from Spanish Monuments and Trailmarkers to Treasure in the United States by Charles Kenworthy. (Photo book of Spanish mine markers on treasure trails in the US)
From the Author:
"A HEART IS THE SIGN/SYMBOL FOR "GOLD" both on written, coded and drawn maps as well as TRAILMARKERS AND MONUMENTS. The origin of this symbols meaning did not come from the Bible, as most did. This meaning came from an old Spanish adage: "A SPANIARD'S SOUL MAY YEARN FOR GOD, BUT HIS HEART FOREVER YEARNS FOR GOLD." This relationship of heart and gold was reinforced in symbolism by the historians who wrote about Cortez' response to Montezuma when Montezuma asked Cortez the question: "-WHY DO YOU SO MUCH DESIRE GOLD?" and Cortez answered "-BECAUSE WE SPANIARDS HAVE A DISEASE OF THE HEART WHICH CAN BE CURED ONLY BY GOLD." -
 So look more than twice when you see a heart carved on a large rock in the desert or on a mountain side, if it was made by the Spanish there is a gold mine or golden treasure nearby. The King of Spain ORDERED all treasure/mine trails to be monumented according to Spain's drawings of markers/monuments. The Palace of Governors in Mexico City and Santa Fe (New Mexico) INSTRUCTED the exploration groups, haciendas, mining/explorers etc. in the basics of both monument meanings and map codes.
Both Mexico City and Santa Fe regulated and enforced the King's rule, received the King's 15% to 20% fee from the haciendas/miners etc., required the trail monuments to be built so that if they wanted to "inspect/check" the operations without notice, they could easily find and follow the monumented trail into desolate mountainous terrain. Also, if all miners were to meet with some great disaster, the King of Spain could again locate and re-establish the mine - or retrieve the hidden treasure by following the monumented trail. 
Therefore, the trail markers to and from were required as well as treasure/mine maps. Note: All treasure/mine maps symbols/signs etc. were also identical in use and meaning throughout this New World. Also, a standard or special list of "measurements were used on treasure/mine maps because Spain could not operate with hundreds of different codes, measurement and different monument/marker meanings when they were dealing with so many mines in the New World.
If we think about it for a minute, it becomes very clear that Spain was extremely wise in requiring "special and specific" codes, measurements, markers and monuments on treasure trails and maps in the New World. Spain had literally thousands of mines (gold, silver, emeralds, amethysts, mercury, etc.) in Mexico, Columbia, Cuba, The United States, Peru, Guatemala etc. with many of them in desolate, distant and dangerous areas of the world. With such a number of mines they could not afford to have separate or different meanings in codes, symbols, maps and treasure/mine trail markers and monuments. Therefore, for example, even though each province/state in Spain did have a different "vara length" and the length of a league may have changed three (3) times in 300 years, but TREASURE TRAIL MONUMENTS, CODES AND MEASUREMENTS NEVER CHANGED.
The kings of Spain required "road signs" monuments and trailmarkers to be constructed about every 1,200 feet both to and from the treasure/mine. Spot just any one of these while fishing, hunting, hiking or treasure seeking and follow the trail--to a prize bigger than the lottery."  This book has over 100 actual photos of classic Spanish markers & monuments (in the field) as well as their meanings and instructions.

The below photographs illustrate the author's method and manner of identification of a Royal Poodle monument as referenced in the accompanying text.

2064695576_POODLEPHOTO.PNG.a09c095941ea3POODLE-  NOTES.PNG

 

 

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I try to put myself in the boots of the Spanish. Why would I waste my Indian slave's labor on monuments and markers, when I needed them to work the mines. I wouldn't. Why not use natural markers and landmarks? Anyone that has lived and worked in the Bradshaw's, Superstition's, or any other mountain range in Arizona, knows how to navigate using natural landmarks - so why wouldn't the Spanish?

That wouldn't make a good book.:)

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We've got them here too.....

spanish monument in northern california.jpg

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I get the drift, and the point would be well taken if it were about Indian slave labor. History doesn't appear to have restricted the Spanish to an approach quite that simplistic. They did have highly skilled tradesmen, including carpenters, masons and the like and it was the King who was the authority behind the practices and procedures involving the issue of trail markers, mine monuments and so on. I agree that the Indios would most likely have been relegated to the mines, climbing chicken ladders down into the pozos etc. But there were also mexican miners and laborers, well diggers, cooks, wranglers and no doubt, armed security as needed. So I think we may be selling the Spanish a bit short if we under estimate their past efforts and accomplishments.

After the Spanish period ended in the Southwest, the Mexican miners did revert to the practice of natural markers and landmarks, such as cairns, stacked rocks, slash marks on cactus and trees etc .According to Kenworthy, the Spanish had been ordered to create permanent markers and monuments, unlike natural terrain features that tended to be misidentified or change over time. But the main reason, and the literature is clear, that the trail markers were not created for navigation by, "Anyone who had lived and worked in the Bradshaw's,  Superstitions, or any other mountain range in Arizona . . ."  They were made for those who had never been there before and were large enough that you couldn't miss them!:)

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LipCa,

Now you've gone and done it! Stop while you still can. They might think the craziness is catching. Yep, looks like a pack mule monument all right. Have you researched Kenworthy's material at all?  I would hope before the skeptics write us off as total wacko's, that they would review a copy of Kenworthy's book and at least examine the basis for our reasoning. 

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The thing is, I think we did have Spanish in the area here. I have seen digging that appear to be much, much older than the 1850's Do you know if the book is online?

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18 hours ago, BMc said:

Has anyone noticed these Spanish Mine Monuments, (in the heart of gold country), in the Bradshaw Mts? I first ran across these huge stone figures in the 1990's while out nugget hunting, and went back a few years later to take some photographs. I was 4-wheeling along a jeep trail, crossing one creek and hill after another, and as I topped a rise and started down toward the next creek,  the Indian Head Monument (my profile photo),  jumped out at me. It looked amazingly real and detailed and was near the trail so you couldn't miss it. I got out and examined it close up to confirm that it had been carved, shaped, and painstakingly worked  by human hands.

Interestingly, I had just finished the  book, "Spanish Monuments and Trail Markers to Treasure in the United States", which gives a historical overview of the subject from the research and perspective of author, Charles A. Kenworthy. The attached photographs of rock monument figures are similar to those shown in Kenworthy's publication and depict what are purported to be trail guides that were hand carved by Spanish stone masons.  Kenworthy's research indicates that they were created sometime between 1560 and 1760 when the Spanish explorers were combing the western states in their search for gold. These monuments reportedly served as directional reference points and guide posts during the ingress and egress of miners and travelers who were involved in the mining and administration of concealed Spanish gold mines.

2005972523_POODLE-PLUTO-3.jpg.db80c84861

I would venture a guess that many gold hunters who passed through this area may have seen one or more of these stone figures, perhaps not knowing what they were, or understanding their potential significance. To generate possible interest in the subject, I thought I would post a few photographs and pose the following questions: Where in the Bradshaw Mts. are they located? Could there possibly be any Spanish gold mines in the Bradshaws that may yet remain concealed? Is there any way to find out?

Any one interested in additional information, with regards to author Kenworthy's notes and comments, please send me a pm. If the locations of the monuments are not identified and disclosed by a forum member following a short initial response period, I will post an update with general directional detail.
Mac (BMc)

 

INDIAN HEAD MONUMENT.PNG

2ND INDIAN HEAD.jpg

POODLE MINE MON (640x547) - Copy.jpg

ROYAL POODLE MON- BUSH.jpg

POODLE-   LOOKING UP.jpg

Looks like the dykes just west of turkey creek on the crown king road. 

Southern AZ is full of old Spanish workings. The workings are easy to find especially from the air. I have yet to see carved stone monuments or other elaborate stone markers. Some of their old trails can be seen in some areas, maybe I don’t know what I’m looking at but I’m skeptic effort was expended in carving stone monuments for navigational markers. 

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The whole concept and many of your details fly in the face of logic and history. I find it difficult to set all that aside. It is preposterous and anyone with a basic understanding of Southwest history or civil engineering can give you a dozen solid reasons why. 

I just had to get that off my chest. No offense intended.

You fellows carry on!

Edited by Bedrock Bob
Just trying to keep it real
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Anything I see in those photo's are Natural Rock formations.   Nothing altered by man. 

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LipCa: The Kenworthy book is available on line, but I would expect that it may also be found in some local libraries. I plan to bring my copy to the outing in Nov. if anyone happens to be interested in taking a look at it.

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I believe the feedback and discussion has been interesting and stimulating. The topic is controversial, just as the subject of Spanish signs and symbols, lost mines etc has always been, I suppose:  Much debated with diverse opinions and interpretations. Many books written on the subject, lots of conflicting viewpoints, even by "experts" in the field. On the subject of civil engineering, I expect there is more than a dozen reasons that the great pyramids of Egypt should not exist too,  but I can't imagine the modification of rock formations like those in question would present that much of an issue to skilled craftsmen. I'm left wondering what my professors at NMSU would have had to say about the matter, or what my old boss, Robert E. Donahue CE. who was the City Engineer of Las Cruces, NM when I worked for him in the engineering department, would say. Probably something like, keep an open mind. No offense taken, Mr. Bedrock.

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BMc, I've read four of Charles A. Kenworthy's books, including Spanish Monuments & Trailmarkers to Treasure; Treasure Signs Symbols Shadow and Sun Signs; Unfound Treasures of Mexico; and Treasure Secrets of the Lost Dutchman.. I met him in 1978-'79, while he was exploring in the Superstition Mountains. My Dad and I were coming back from Lebarge creek on the Peralta trailhead, when we ran into him and his friends. He talked to my Dad for a while about Charlebois Spring and Williams Camp.

The man was a great writer, but I think some of his ideas are just pure fantasy and conjecture. Who is right? I have no idea. :cowboypistol:

 

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Fair Dinkum Terry. I base my convictions mainly on what I considered his being able to connect the dots in his book on mine monuments and trail markers. His photographs and narratives of rock formations in various shapes, sizes, and purposes, along with his descriptive methods as to how the Spanish positioned the figures, the eye catchers they used, the "open hole" and mortared foundation and support systems they used to stabilize the rock formations, (and to confirm that the structures were man made and not natural features), all made sense to me. The objects in his book are real. Someone made them for some reason. Of that, I am convinced. According to sources, you may be familiar with, Kenworthy amassed a great deal of Spanish archival journals, logs and materials relating to the subject. And of course, he had some pretty distinguishing people as business partners and investors in his projects who believed in him. I also read Treasure signs, symbols etc and thought it useful, but outside of what I believe to be credible evidence of the mine trail markers that I have seen up close and personal, I don't have an opinion about the veracity or validity of his work. I avoided his book on Death Traps and I didn't watch the continuing saga of Indiana Jones after the original movie either.

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 And what say ye about this one ?
Natural or man made .

LODGE GRILL 026.jpg

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12 minutes ago, frank c said:

 And what say ye about this one ?
Natural or man made .

LODGE GRILL 026.jpg

Obviously carved by Penitente monks.

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The first question (WITH MIND OPEN)  is Why would they have ever gone through the trouble of that much work ?  Why would they leave such a large sign saying ""TREASURE IS HERE""  ??   Most authentic Treasure Markers would be  nothing more then a few Chink Marks on a rock on a known traveled trail.  

The Spanish Expeditions didn't allow for Leisure time activities.   Food And Water was the issues of the day.  Not Art Work.  

Edited by homefire
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I am truly interested in the history of the Spanish, but they did not really have the population to take advantage of the treasures of the area.  They certainly left a lot for Americans.  Soon after both California and Arizona became American territories, gold was discovered in great quantities. 

I would really like to see a Spanish Digging.  One of the rumors I heard is they would cut the limbs off saguaros to mark the trails, and since Saguaros still stand today from the Spanish time, those markers are still out there.  None of the limbless Saguaros I've seen, I've ever been able to make sense into a trail.

I do wonder if some of the older diggings I've seen in the local Wickenburg area were Spanish or not.  They did explore around here.  I'd be happy to find a piece of 8 out looking for a nugget.

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Plenty of Spanish digging in many areas in New Mexico. And plenty of Spanish markings. But they did a whole lot more colonization, farming and conversion than they did mining. And they were a whole lot more interested in building incredibly ornate churches and buildings than making rotten outcroppings sorta kinda look like a poodle.

The conquest lasted only a few short years. There were less than 30 Spanish in the continental U.S. at that time. There were no Spanish stone masons to carve poodles during that period. Nor were there until the Reconquista. By the time De Vargas returned the Spanish were more concerned with colonization and creating a society than mining gold. There were only a few skilled tradesmen that led genizaro workers to build the cathedral in Santa Fe. They also built villages and started farms and ranches. There was one engineer. His job was to build acequias, not mines.

The mines received little attention after the initial conquest period. Slavery was outlawed for Spaniards after 1580. As a matter of fact that was the promise of De Vargas.

Individual Spaniards did open mines and when they did the Crown ordered all specie stamped with the maltese cross after they paid tax on it. So the "King" did not control the mines. Individuals did. And officers of Spain enforced that by seizing a percentage of all specie that did not bear the stamp. Again, they did not control the mines. They controlled the specie by means of a stamp. And taxes were collected by the Jesuits and then later the Franciscans. 

The only "buried Spanish treasure" was created by the natives during the revolt. They threw the gold along with everything else Spanish back into the holes and covered them. They did not carve poodles or mark the spot. They wanted to hide it forever. Any lost Spanish mines known to the natives were hidden and any markings erased after they drove the Spanish back into what is now Mexico.

The Jesuits and the Franciscans made stashes. They collected tithings from all the subjects and hid it until it could be taken to the church in Chihuahua City. It was usually stashed under the floor of the church (i.e. Gran Quivira) until a wagon driven by a priest and guarded by soldiers took it to Chihuahua City. A few caches may have been lost. Still, no poodles.

When a Spanish officer located a deposit he would backtrack using landmarks and waypoints just like any other trained officer of the day. There would be no need for anything more elaborate than the standard navigational techniques that got them across the ocean. By 1600 the Spanish had sailed to every corner of the globe and found mines on every continent. Reason would state that they marked their way in the Bradshaws just like they marked their way in every other area of the globe.

They almost conquered the world and we know a whole lot about what they did and how they did it. The carved poodle outcrop story just does not fit with any of it.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Bedrock Bob
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The Spanish kept excellent records. Mining without paying the vig to the crown was punishable by death. There are very good records of the few New Mexico mines.

A good place to find those Spanish records is HERE.

Now go find any evidence of Spanish explorers in the Bradshaws.

You won't find them because it never happened. The closest the Spanish ever came to the Bradshaws was the area around the upper Agua Fria when they were looking for the route to the Bill Williams and the Colorado River. Mining by missionaries or by Indians directed by Spanish did not occur in Arizona north of the Gila River.

Try looking through this historical synopsis of the history of Arizona for any indication of Spanish traveling in the Bradshaws much less mining in the Bradshaws. Here is a quote from the official Arizona historian.
 

Quote

 

The data we have, which has been collected by Bancroft and others, is incomplete, but enough is known to justify the assertion that the Gila Valley of Arizona was not covered with prosperous Spanish missions and settlements that were abandoned on account of Apache raids. Under the Jesuit rule, only two missions, those of Bac and Guevavi, were established. The rest were rancherias de visita, which received a precarious protection by Tubac.

The Arizona missions were never more than two, and they were never prosperous. So, also, the rich mines and prosperous haciendas, with which the country is pictured as having been dotted, are purely imaginary, resting only on vague traditions of the Planchas de Plata excitement, and on the well-known mineral wealth of later times. The Jesuits, of course—though the contrary is often alleged—worked no mines, nor is there any evidence that in Jesuit times there were any mining operations in Arizona beyond an occasional prospecting raid; and even later, down to the end of the century, such operations were on a small scale, confined to the vicinity of the presidios.’’ This remark may also be applied to agricultural operations, which were often abandoned, and more often plundered by the savages.

Tucson has been regarded as a more or less prosperous town from a very early date; some writers dating its foundation in the sixteenth century, but as a matter of fact it was not heard of, even as an Indian rancheria, until the middle of the eighteenth century, and it was not a Spanish settlement until the presidio was moved there in later years.

The expulsion of the Jesuits was caused primarily by the revolt of the Pimas in 1750, and after this revolt was put down by the Spanish arms, there rose a quarrel between the Jesuits and the civil authorities, each charging the other with being the cause of this revolt, which resulted in the expulsion of the Jesuits in 1767, when all mission property belonging to the Jesuits, was confiscated by the Spanish Government

 

The Spanish did mine the copper deposit at Santa Rita. The records of the workings and product of that mine were well recorded but of course Santa Rita is above the Mimbres valley in New Mexico hundreds of miles from the Bradshaws. We are still mining copper at Santa Rita (Chino mine).

I'm fond of facts. Facts and truth are inseparable friends. Speculation and imagination are very useful human traits and pursued with integrity they can lead to new facts to support the truth. Speculate as you wish but when speculations are contradicted by the facts that speculation is better characterized as fantasy. Fantasy does have it's place in human experience but I've never found a useful outcome when fantasy is mixed with mining. Perhaps your experience is different than mine?

 

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Thanks Clay. At some point we must acknowledge reality. Fantasy is just fine as long as it does not conflict with well known history. When it does someone MUST call it out for what it is. 

Now we have a conundrum... if the Spanish did not carve that poodle then who did? Aliens? :rolleyes:

 

Edited by Bedrock Bob
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Mining partner in 1978-80 was involved in gold mining in Mexico. He was going to pay the help $5.00 per hour. He was informed that if he paid them more than $3.00 per day, he was going to jail. He pulled out, his other two partners stayed and went broke.

Am friends with an Western Apache family and many Mexican families along the western Gila River. It's religion that keeps them poor.

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Gentlemen,  . . .  Really?  Methinks Thou Do Protest Too Much! I merely tried to present the author's material and to render my opinon that his descriptions and correlations made sense to me, based on the information in his writings, and on my observation of the rock formations themselves. That's all.  Any statements  I made were supported by the book. I never said it was gospel and I wasn't trying to convince anyone of an exclusive viewpoint or disuade opposing opinions. My intention was to simply point out that figures similar to the ones in Kenworthy's book do exist and where they were located if anyone wanted to check it out for themselves. Plus, the area is excellent gold country as many are aware.  
In the deserts and mountains of the Southwest, there have been numerous documented reports of sightings of rock formations that appear to have been deliberately modified to resemble the shape of animate objects. Up to the time of the Kenworthy publication, I hadn't read anything that purported to explain the reason for their existence. I haven't seen anything in the historical records that explains, acknowledges, or even refers to these objects in any manner either. Maybe it's there somewhere, I just haven't seen it.
In regards to fantasy and mining etc. (from my experience), I have found that I am like most friendly easy going sort of folks who tend to enjoy a bit of fantasy mixed with their mining. When out there swinging a coil, or digging a good sounding target, or pursuing their dream in whatever fashion that makes people happy, it's only natural and kind of fun to engage in a little bit of fantasy about finding gold.

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