On June 27, Rebel raiders under Lt. Col. Elijah White visited Hanover, a bustling railroad town in southwestern York County. They procured horses, food, liquor, supplies, and any thing else of interest, usually paying in worthless Confederate scrip. A number of merchants and shopkeepers had wisely taken their most valuable merchandise into hiding. However, some procrastinators were still in town when White’s men rode into the center square. Hanover jeweler William Boadenhamer, after a late start, was frantically leaving Hanover on theYork Road.. Gun-toting cavalrymen overtook his carriage about a mile from the town and stole a large box of retail goods. Resting in the shade of a tree near Samuel Mumma’s grist mill, the Rebels opened the chest and found to their delight that it contained nearly one hundred watches and jewelry. They distributed part of the loot among themselves, and, in nearby Jefferson, a soldier passed along a brooch to a little girl he encountered on the street. It is one of the few jewelry pieces known to have been recovered from the entire inventory Boadenhamer lost to the raiders. What happened to the rest?
In a 1906 letter, Elijah White informed former fellow cavalry officer John S. Mosby that, on his way to sacking the railroad depot at Hanover Junction, “Nothing occurred on the way of any consequence, except I captured a wagon load of jewelry. After supplying ourselves, we buried the balance.” For many years, eager treasure hunters have vainly sought White’s buried treasure, if, indeed, he had truly ordered the bulk of an entire jewelry store’s inventory to be stuck in the ground somewhere in the vicinity of Mumma’s old mill along meandering Oil Creek.
By the way, it’s private property today, so don’t trespass with those metal detectors!!!