Carl J. Clausen


"The probability is that the treasure will never be recovered," states the Charleston Daily Courier, reporting in 1857 the accidental loss of a sizeable United States army payroll in a Florida east coast inlet. The Third Seminole War, which officially started with the not entirely unprovoked attack by the Indians on a government survey party near Fort Myers in late December 1855, was in its seventeenth month when Major Jeremiah Yellot Dashiell of the army paymaster corps arrived off the Indian River Inlet on the east coast of Florida on May 1, 1857. Entrusted to Dashiell was a leather pouch containing $23,000 in gold which had been withdrawn a few days earlier from the subtreasury in Charleston, South Carolina. The money was intended for disbursement to federal troops in the major’s pay district which encompassed the Indian River area.