Recently for gold treasure buffs in general, and the residents of Wroclaw, Poland in particular, there has been exciting gold news! In the world of gold treasure hunting the existence of the mythical ghost train full of Nazi gold is perhaps the equivalent of finding proof that aliens exist.
The lore goes like this; during World War II Hitler and the third Reich invaded Poland and apparently near the small city of Wroclaw, Poland built an amazingly large labyrinth of train tunnels and many ran under a mammoth mountain. The Nazi complex was called “Riese” which roughly translates to the word “giant”. Though the complex was never completed, an extensive network of tunnels exist to this day.
Not only because the Nazis were well known to be voracious thieves of fine art as well as jewels, gold and silver bars and coins, as well as silver bullion, but because the Nazis kept impeccable records of their thefts and growing inventory, we know for certain that a strong focus was put on plundering any territories captured for their rare and precious items, and Hitler certainly understood that an empire’s power was bolstered by the empire’s wealth, and gold is wealth. So, knowing that the Nazi regime seeked out and hoarded gold, and that the Riese, which was supposed to be a secret installation but is in fact known to exist, it is entirely conceivable that the German military was hoarding gold under this Polish mountain when the war came to an end, and those that knew of the existence of a gold horde were either killed or died without divulging the secret.
As reported in an article for the Smithsonian, as written by Danny Lewis and published August 24th of 2015, the existence of the train is compared to a game of “telephone” or “he said, he said”. As the story goes and the lore deepens, a Polish miner was told by some German miners that they saw a secret train being wheeled into a secret tunnel in the Nazi installation under the Owl Mountain range.
If that is the case, then I would imagine that since that day there have been people looking for the mythical gold train full of Nazi gold. After all, if it is enough gold that you have to haul it with a train the value, then and now, would be astronomical. In fact just a rough calculation multiplying the price of today’s gold times the reported 300 some odd tons that may be on the Nazi ghost train would have a value of billions of dollars.
What brings this story to light is the fact that apparently two Polish men have approached a law firm, and attorneys from this law firm have approached the Polish government on behalf of the men to state that they have found the lost Nazi ghost train full of gold.
In return for divulging the location of the lost gold train, the two men want to reportedly share “10% of the trains value”. From the Smithsonian article it is unclear whether the two men are requesting 10% of the treasure, or whether they are requesting to be paid 10% of the appraised value of the train and its contents in a worthless fiat currency.
If I were one of the two men the two men, I would certainly be happy to acquire 15 tons of gold, even if I was sore about giving up 90% of my find. Speaking of which, I recently wrote what I thought was an interesting article about finding gold treasure and the taxes associated finding gold treasure, and you can read that article here.
Were Lewis’ article gets even more interesting, is when he states that local authorities have notified Polish fire departments, Polish military, and Polish law enforcement and have them on standby. The common word on the street is that if this train does exist, and it is loaded down with Nazi plunder including jewels and 300 tons of the precious metal gold, there is a very strong likelihood that the train was not left “undefended”.
Speculations exist as to whether the train may be booby-trapped with explosives including mines which would be some 70 years plus old, or other types of dangers. Regardless of any aging and possibly unstable mines, the presence of methane gas which builds up in mine shafts and is highly explosive as well as suffocating, is a certainty.
What is not a certainty, however, according to Lewis’ article is that there even is gold on the Nazi train. If in fact the two men did find the mythical Nazi train, which was reported to have possibly been an armored train, it could very well have contents that are more valuable than gold. What could be more valuable than gold? In theory and practice, for something to be more valuable than gold, it would either have to be rarer than gold and/or more in demand than gold.
In this case, we know that the Nazis had scientists that were arguably the best in the world and they were working feverishly at developing new technology, and they were good at it. History and science buffs would be aware that the Nazis and the Americans were in a race to develop nuclear power and atomic warfare. Only by further developing captured German technologies, and by employing their scientists, was America able to develop a working atomic bomb, and thus follow the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan.
A little deeper pondering, starts developing some interesting questions. What would have to be on a train to make it work searching for and then risking life and limb to retrieve? Some people would consider antique furniture a suitable award for such an endeavor, although I think those people are few and far between.
I would suppose a train full of rare art would appeal to a larger number, and while jewels are definitely of value the train wouldn’t be necessary to haul a horde of diamonds, but 300 tons of gold and now you have a serious amount of wealth requiring a serious amount of power to transport it. But, if you were trying to retrieve lost Nazi technology and you were trying to keep this quiet, about the only way you could mobilize military, police and fire professionals to a defunct top-secret Nazi installation would be to tell the public that you were there to recover gold.
You could try to tell everyone that you were trying to recover lost to Deutsche Bank receipts, or old hundred thousand Deutschemark notes, but nobody would believe that you are willing to blow yourself and everybody else up for paper.
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