With the release of the Disney motion picture “National Treasure: Book of Secrets,” the idea that America may be home to hidden treasure is capturing the imagination of audiences everywhere. Are there really national treasures linked to great American figures? Could the
Beale Papers, which until now have been a 19th century legend, indicate one such mystery? One
investigative author says yes.
The Beale Papers are three encrypted ciphertexts that have long been thought to point to a treasure in Virginia. The story goes, in 1820, Thomas Jefferson Beale left an innkeeper the encrypted documents telling where he had buried a treasure worth $30 million. Beale was never heard from again, and the mystery was left unanswered. Some have called the story a hoax, but author Kenneth Andrew Bauman provides evidence supporting a case for the mysterious Beale Papers