Scrapbook Twenty-six…



Forrest says:

This thing is 9″ tall, and I acquired it from an old Spanish family whose heritage has been traced back to Spanish land grant times in New Mexico. Does anyone have an opinion about it?

Below is an image of just the painting. If you click on it and open it full size you should be able to get a pretty good view of that painting.


202 thoughts on “Scrapbook Twenty-six…

    • Looks to me like scene is depicting hell….colors, tones and strokes look like fire.

    • The picture appears to me to be a mother holding a perfume bottle (or shampoo) over her daughter’s head and a water bottle over her son’s head as they are bathing in a tub. My guess is that the object is a votive offering from the mother wishing her children to have a nice rest (given by sleep) after her children’s long day of playing.

      Latin to English:
      doma = votive offering
      eis = these
      requiem = repose

    • Hi Forrest,

      Call me crazy…please do actually if I am not making sense…but I am stuck on the Dona Ana land grant thing. Even the picture looks to me like an offering of fertile ground. I realize Dona Eis Requiem means grant unto them…but absent the beginning “Jesus” or “O’ Lord”… I am still thinking land, granted, Dona Ana, Elephant Butte Resevoir, the land grant disputes, and finally, on March 16, 1901, the last bit of the Dona Ana land grant is made smaller when ceded to Luna county…coincidence?? maybe… That dam is definitely warm waters halting…even to the point of truth or consequences….I am thinking, that your posted artifact has more to do with the above than resting someone(s) eternal peace….am I paddling up the proverbial wrong creek?

      • If you want Forrest to see this you should post it on his blog. He only comes over here occasionally. Is your place North of Santa Fe? Is it in the Rocky Mountains? Is it above 5,000 feet altitude?

  1. Imho, it is a head piece from maybe an alter of some type. A translation of the Latin inscription says: “Give them peace”. Latin was and still is used in some church’s. .

  2. was it part of a wooden grave marker? It is asking to give them peace. It looks like fire is surrounding the people. I would expect this to be catholic and perhaps the people are in purgatory waiting to be released and enter heaven. It is like the bultos statues that the spanish people carved for their churches so I think it would be at least a hundred years old. The woman above the others is naked so I don’t think she represents the virgin mary. I could be wrong. I’m just guessing, I have no expertise here.

    • My thoughts also that the painting is about Purgatory where the dead go to be purified by fire before entering heaven. I wonder if it would be a grave marker though as it looks to be in wonderful condition for such an old piece.

      Beautiful find Forrest!

    • I suppose it wouldn’t be on a grave marker unless it was being touched up all the time. The writing in latin is not much faded. When my husband passed away 6 years ago, his brother posted a letter on the wood cross that was made for him at his gravesite in Rivera. A year later, the writing was much faded and within a few years, you could not see anything at all on the paper.

  3. It’s beautiful! I’ve only been home a few days and I miss NM already! Extraordinary beauty

  4. The Golden Quest
    By Debbie DeMalou
    (Dedicated to Forrest Fenn and his Dlsclples)

    As I traverse,
    This land of mine,
    And search,
    Its sandy shores,

    Or climb up to,
    The mountain peaks,
    And search,
    Its rocky gorge,

    The river’s edge,
    And its foam,
    The warmth of air,
    Beneath the Sun,

    With hues of blue,
    And cloudy skies,
    I contemplate,
    The Traven hive.

    I have been traveling,
    Up and down,
    And through,
    The brown of wood,

    My quest of gold,
    And fame goes on,
    In daze of thought,
    And dreams of good.

    Perhaps today,
    My quest will end,
    And I will find,
    The blazon trove.

    Perhaps today,
    My quest will end,
    And I will hear,
    Of rivals bold.

    Perhaps today,
    Life’s journeys done,
    With trumped up sounds
    And glowing Sun.

  5. It looks like the 3 Sisters 🙂 I pass them everyday while driving and have been meaning to capture them in photograph for my wall. Oh, up by Los Alamos 🙂 lol

  6. The painting appears to be a representation of Matthew 19:14, “Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” Exact wording varies with the version of the text. Sermon on the Mount.This one’s KJV.

    It’s a favorite choice in a lot of stained glass, etc.

    • The old homes in New Mexico used to almost all have a patron saint hanging on the wall or sitting on a surface acting as a miniature shrine. The inscription on back makes it tempting to consider the possibility this was one, but even though I haven’t seen that precise representation, my gut feel tells me this is M 19:14.

      Patron saints tended to get turned around facing the wall when they didn’t perform their designated function, and the inscription suggests this one was intended to be viewed from the back side, as well as the front.

      However, the staple for hanging it or keeping upright on a hook definitely suggests it would usually be inscription-side to the wall, unless it was suspended in an archway, window, or doorway.

      • There used to be another fastener of some sort on the bottom back, now broken off, but the mark it left is still apparent. The patina on most of the surface except the centers front and back would lead me to think it was exposed to weather for a longish while, but the centers kept cleaned. Maybe less so, the back.

        Notice how the bottom-back ridge looks more deteriorated than the rest of the rim. I’m inclined to think vinegar was used to clean the center surface and drips or the rag sagged over the lower rim giving it more of a dose than the rest got.

  7. Watch KOB tomorrow at 10:00am for a 30 minute program about the chase. Channel 4 in SF. It’s an NBC station. I’m guessing it will be on, but as we found out last time…they only put the link up at about that time.

  8. Wow…the blog popped up and i was taking a second to eat and relax…i told the wifee no my brain hurts…she said your not gonna look it up… I sad no…again…again…ok it looks like spanish clonial art but only for a minute. Dona Eis Requiem looks to be rest in peace…when I look at the pic i see two choices…one bathing/relaxin…the other im horrified to think what might be happening…

  9. Requiem also mean grant unto them…not necessarily the end something…if it came from the land grant era, perhaps something relating to that…just initial thoughts….

    • Looking forward to reading your further thoughts and observations about it annemariely. I hope you’ll share them. J

  10. Looks like a baptism, and they are standing in water with catails and water grasses. The arms stretched out overtop the little ones head like a blessing. Beautiful peaceful picture!

  11. I remember from testing my daughter for a recent history test that women were able to receive land grants 🙂 So I searched “women and land grants and came up with the passage below. Again, just a quick search, but found the following which is interesting:

    The Doña Ana Bend Colony and its land grant has played a leading role in the history of the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico. Doña Ana, the initial settlement on the grant and the oldest permanent settlement in the valley was founded in 1843, upon the ancient Doña Ana paraje. After its establishment, Doña Ana afforded the only protection for travelers passing over that dangerous stretch of the Camino Real lying between El Paso del Norte and Socorro, New Mexico. It undoubtedly took great courage for the original colonists to move to that isolated and unprotected settlement located in the heart of the hostile Indian Country. However, through their sacrifices, a nucleus was formed which ultimately led to the settlement and development of the entire valley.

  12. For anyone done working on Forrest’s little painting….I’m trying to find out where warm water’s halt…feel free to email me directly at tyblossom at aol dot com *smile*

    • Stephanie: Down at the Mimbres Apache homeground there’s a warm spring runs between a crack in the rocks … the only easy way of getting to the backside. Geronimo, Nana, Victorio and Mangas all walked where you place your feet as you wade through. On the other side the warm waters halt.

      Don’t know whether a person can still get in there, though. It’s on private land and was accessible several years while the ranch was up for sale. There’s ruins of an 1860s70s army compound on the springs side, through the crack’s ruins predating the Apach, plus a few camp rock, etc, left by the Mimbres.

      If you’re determined enough you can hold a magnet up to your compass and turn it so’s that’s north of Santa Fe. Might be above 5000 feet.

      • annemariely: It’s offered as an example. Actually located northeast of Monticello, NM, no river involved.

      • Dang Old Jules…I love your ingenuity with the magnet. Where have you been all my Thrill of the Chase treasure hunting life? Can you imagine the places I could have made work with that trick?

    • Stephanie must be heading out there. She appears impatient with any comment not related to “warm waters”.
      Try the Tea Room at the at the Ghost Ranch…warm waters halt there..
      You don’t have to thank me…

      • I’m just sitting here(where?) waiting for an invite from Forrest to taste that Pimiento Cheese Sandwich so I can hopefully change my mind about it. Stephanie

      • oops…didn’t mean to send that last blank post. So I found warm waters halting already? I better look at my notes of places I discounted(it’s pages and pages long).

  13. To witness, to
    enter this
    essence, this
    silence, this
    blue color
    of sky, wreaths
    of smoke, bodies
    of children blue
    in their nets
    of veins: a lorry
    draws up at the pit
    under the blue sky where
    wreaths rise. These
    are the children’s bodies, this
    our earth. Blue. A lorry
    draws up at the pit
    where children smolder The sky
    deepens into blue, its
    meditation, a blue
    flame, the children
    smolder.Lord of blue,
    blue chest and blue brain,
    a lorry of murdered children
    draws up at the pit. This
    happened, this
    happens, Your
    sign, children
    flaming in their rags, children
    of bone-smolder, scroll

    by william heyen, crazy horse in stillness

  14. Pie Jesu Domine,
    Dona eis requiem. (×2)

    Pious Lord Jesus,
    Give them rest.

    Pie Jesu Domine,
    Dona eis requiem sempiternam.

    Pious Lord Jesus,
    Give them everlasting rest.

    Pie is the vocative of the word pius (“pious”, “dutiful to one’s parent or God”).[2] Requiem is the accusative of requiēs (“rest”), sometimes mistranslated as “peace”, although that would be pacem, as in Dona nobis pacem (“Give us peace”).

    The Andrew Lloyd Webber version combines the text of the Pie Jesu with that of the version of the Agnus Dei formerly appointed to be used at Requiem Masses:

    Pie Jesu, (×4)
    Qui tollis peccata mundi,
    Dona eis requiem… (×2)

    Pious Jesus,
    Who takes on the sins of the world,
    Give them rest…

    Agnus Dei, (×4)
    Qui tollis peccata mundi,
    Dona eis requiem, (×2)
    Sempiternam (×2)

    Lamb of God,
    Who takes on the sins of the world,
    Give them rest,

      • no problem Jules. What do you think about the two young women buried out back of Mammoth Hotel along the terraces? someone said forrest said, “no place for old biddies”, well most people, when they think of old biddies, picture 2 sisters in their eighties who live together and own a bunch of cats! 😛 , There are two YOUNG women buried out there. Sorry to talk about death , but what if forest was bummed when he was going to italics(die) with his treasure and actually dug his own grave and the treasure is under a slate or 9tombstone) “here lies Forrest’s treasure!” LOL LOL LOL

      • Kym: Forrest has tromped around in country and ruins where coming across skulls, skeletons, etc, doesn’t raise an eyebrow. Maybe it’s the treasure site, but I doubt he gets bummed out by such things.

        Once I was working a vertical walled arroyo on Gobblers Knob with an old friend, now deceased. He was behind me… I came across a part of a skeleton and skull sticking out of the arroyo wall. I looked it over without touching it, then worked on down the canyone. Mel, my amigo, stoppeded and I didn’t pay any mind to what he was doing. Later, on the way back to town he reached across the seat into the back and brought out the skull.

        “You stole Oola’s skull!” Thoroughly weed me off. “Get it the hell out of this truck!”

        Oola, of course, was Alley Oop’s lady friend. He hid it under a juniper and we went back a week later and returned it to Gobbler’s Knob.

        Mel never intended to take Oola’s skull. He just wanted to get somewhere he could sit down and examine the way something crushed in one side of it. Forgot he had it.

        Those folks out there had a hellacious civil war back well before the Europeans arrived. Half the ruins in that part of New Mexico have skeletons, charred when the other side killed them and burned their houses down around them. Burned corn still on the cobs.

        Likely Forrest has seen as much of that as I have.


    • My grandmother said a prayer every day which she told me released a soul from purgatory every time you said it. I was reminded of her when looking at this painting. Not knowing the prayer, I looked it up and found this.

      Eternal Father,
      I offer Thee the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus,
      in union with the Masses said throughout the world today,
      for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory,
      for sinners everywhere,
      for sinners in the Universal Church,
      those in my own home and within my family.


      I beieve I was remiss in calling the figure above the others a woman as it seems now to me that it is Jesus with his arms outstretched over the suffering. I hope that I am not being offensive by bringing up religion but the image invoked many thoughts of my youth and catholic upbringing.

    • Seems like Forrest has successfully diverted a lot of people’s attention. I’m sure he will be leaving many more pictures for everyone to research. More than likely, they wont lead to much of anything. The poem is all we need according to the man…

      • I don’t think he’s diverting on purpose. I think he’s just enjoying everyone’s comments on different things since he can’t go out and look for the treasure. Well, I mean I guess he can…but…..

      • slope66: Yep, likely as not everyone who reads here would have already found it from the poem if their attentions hadn’t been diverted by wossname, sandwiches, fishing lures, flashlights, etc.

        They’d have found it in Colorado, Wyoming, Jemez Springs, and Elephink Butte [nothing in the poem says ‘north’, Rocky Mountains, 5000 msl] or somewhere in California, Nevada, or North Korea.

  15. i would be of the opinion, that is a fine blaze going on in that there painting sir

    • Kym: Nope. Been to a lot of old townsites in the past, cabin ruins, poked into a number of mineshafts. Mostly I don’t care for mining camp ruins. If I’m going to find that box it’s not going to be in any mineshaft or mining camp ruin.

  16. It’s lovely. Seems to me a painting of the day of judgment. when God passes judgment and raises the righteous to join Him in heaven. But I’m rusty int religious studies.

    • Don’t abandon it on my account and sayso, Kym. I don’t know any more about the matter than you do. All I can tell you is my own worthless opinion, which, of course, isn’t worth much.

  17. Yes,very rusty. Just checked wiki and God raises the righteous dead to live eternally in a restored garden of paradise… in one version.

  18. there seems to be still KISS. Rabbit trails on the outsides and the Middle is the Way. The jars and bells pics he posted were three then there were two, the 2 on the outside.

    • Kym: Seems to me there’s a systematic way of organizing yourself to approach this. Naturally I’d figure so, because it’s the method I used for 20 years and change searching for the Lost Adams Diggings.

      I’d spend the winters holed up in Santa Fe poring over documents, maps, air photos, and truly hacking off my lady friend of the time, but deciding on a location. Chomp at the bit studying more, waiting for snowmelt so I could check it out. Then, usually too early, beat a trail out there and do a thorough recon of the area, trying to narrow things down, find something to lead me up a canyon instead of a dozen others. But check them all before I gave up the site.

      I can testify from experience it’s a great way not to find a lost gold mine.

  19. If my guess is correct, I would venture the nudity would be consistent with the old testament and the fact that Adam and Eve were naked in the garden until the devil tempted Eve? Don’t know.

  20. Interesting that we all know exactly what that thing is, and we ain’t any of us saying it.

  21. There is a painting very much like this, hanging in St Gabriel. The Church of St. Gabriel is the Orthodox counterpart to the Catholic Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth. According to Orthodox tradition, the Virgin Mary first received the news from Gabriel that she would bear the Savior while she was out fetching water.
    The picture is of Jesus standing between two cherubs angels, His arms above their heads in the same pose. What is so striking about that painting is the cherub faces are almost in the identical pose! The Cherubs have wings, and Jesus is dressed in the church artwork, which is different.

  22. IMO: One should gather information and draw no conclusions

    By having “context” (the family name for example) one can head towards the correct conclusion.

    Jules heard a wrought piece of iron was found at the Adam’s diggings?

    Old time treasure hunters would leave behind something to tell a fellow brother to move on…………..

    • Rick: I’m aware some folks recently claimed they’ve found it. Maybe that’s the source of your wrought-iron story. Like this one, hundreds of people have found it over the century-plus, several every decade. As far as I know none of them ever came out with any gold. Including this new lot claiming to have found it lately.

      Sounds familiar, eh?

      The noise behind the current, or recent claims is a man named Dick French. Wrote the other book about it, besides the ones Frank Dobie and I wrote about it. Dick and I used to hunt for it together back in the earlies. Today he’d be older and in a lot poorer health than Forrest.

      I doubt old Dick’s been climbing any mountains.

  23. Lucien Maxwell is in northern New Mexico where most people think the treasure is. At least the hunters that think it is New Mexico.

    • old Lucien sold a piece of land to a man back in the1870s whose surname is in the title of Mr. Fenn’s book. This ranch has remained in this man’s family through four generations I think and ending, sadly, on 08/14/12 when Miss Gretchen passed away. Imagine my excitement more than a year ago when I saw the ranch name for the first time on the fence on my chosen road to the treasure, or so I thought.

  24. The painting can be see about 5 minutes into Christine Amanpour’s TV special called”back to the beginning part 1″ if you freeze the frame, notice Jesus fingers, then look at Jesus fingers in the old Spanish piece, and notice the Cherebs faces in both paintings.
    Any chance the person who painted this was in Israel for a visit?

      • I have the app called ABC player for IPhone. I saw it on that. I hope you can find it, the clip is so quick, you have to hit pause to check out JC.

      • Stephanie, very early into the segment, the Orthodox Church where Gabriel tells Mary she is expecting. They pan through some very old artwork hanging in that church. Very similar pose as Forrest’s piece.
        But then my hubby tells me a lot of Catholic artwork depicts JC with Cherubs. Hubby is an art major, film producer, and author.
        One of the pieces of artwork in that church was in his book and film!
        We used the artwork of The dragon slayer in that church.

  25. IMO: Who will find this treasure? Comes down to who drew the right conclusion:)

    If your willing to draw conclusions to things that you know nothing about, then I don’t see how your conclusions can lead to success.

    I sure dam don’t know what this artifact above is about…………

  26. Jules:

    Really don’t know what it is:)

    Looks to be made out of wood? If so what kind of wood? Is it native to the New World or is it from the Old World?

    Was it carved by a wood carver and painted by a artist?

    What is it’s ownership history? We know the current owner is Forrest Fenn (we assume nothing) ?

    Apparently Forrest wants opinions ………………….if we he is willing to pay I’m willing to spend the next year writing a book on the darn thing:)

    • Forrest knows what it is, too, Rick. He don’t need no stinking book.

      Nice sidestepping job, amigo… all those things would be nice to know, and with the possible exception of the family name, almost certainly not helpful.

      As you are perfectly aware.

  27. Looks like it may have been attached to some sort of staff or rod? Something a priest may have carried in a funeral ceremony perhaps?

  28. Kan,
    but that web link says Mexican heritage, there is a difference in people that emigrated from Spain as opposed to Mexico. So did you find one from Spain?

    • Kym,
      well here is my very non professional opinion about that . a lot of the art work after 1520 , is more of a mesh of religious symbols and culture, than say either one of them were before the conquest . it was pretty common practice for the friars to try and destroy most of the religious icons from the Mexica period . it was however more difficult to destroy the ideals and beliefs instilled in the masses. perhaps what you see here is a Christianized version of a much older Pantheon of the natives . well may , like old jules said it does have a Mexican look about it . that link does say that the practice of painting the little figures on the wood was brought over with the Spanish conquistadors so who knows?

      • you will have to forgive me the spell checker got me the above post was suppose to say polytheistic not pantheon. LOL

      • Thanks Kan 🙂 I’ve learned so much from others like yourself, just reading everyone’s posts, since I started trying to decipher poem myself. lol

    • I was wrong. Kan was right. At San Jose de Gracia on the site Kan posted is what looks like one of those things on the top of the one on the right with Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Maybe it broke off someone’s homemade altar?

  29. Re: Painting – Looks like Christ is saving people from the fires of Hell. His hands appear to have a light coming from them, like illumination or something. The Latin words about rest or peace would add to the thought of this being a religious piece. Somewhat significant is that there appears to be a signature on it: “Luis” possibly or “Lius” as I cannot read it very well. It appears somewhat plain (no additional carvings in the wooden frame) but it is somewhat elaborate as it isn’t a simple square or oval. It looks as if it was attatched to something at the base in the rear – possibly a post of some type or part of a larger piece. That’s my take and I am not very experienced with this type of item at all.
    @Stephanie – yes, Where do Warm waters halt?

  30. Jules

    My latest theory: Forrest said it was hidden in the Rocky Mountains.

    Dal lives Washington. The Rocky Mountains are a part of this state. Forrest had a a painting of George Washington. Can’t stop myself from drawing conclusions:)

    If so then it’s possible Forrest hid it right on his property………….so while Dal runs out to Montana we head for his property:)

    • Rick: I dunno where it is. You’re probably right. If not there, then somewhere else.

  31. I think he doesn’t want people tramping all over his property, in Santa Fe, like the “nutcase” ringing his bell multiple times the other day….

  32. So tonight I was driving down the canyon road known as the Old Spanish Trail in Southern Utah and I noticed a newly placed solar powered lighted Cross at the side of the road. When I looked up at the road I noticed a grey translucent shape in front of me on the road. So I pressed on the brakes but ended going through this entity…Now this picture in this posting is from a mass for the dead and I have to endure the heebie jeebies until morning. Thanks FF and dal

  33. Maybe “nut” was playing ding dong ditch………….

    And maybe you should read the postings before drawing false conclusions:)

  34. it looks like TRC at bottom. Also, when the Spanish reconquest happened they taught the pueblo peoples to make adobe bricks for their architecture.
    so that piece can’t be made before the 1700’s and it’s more likely late 1800’s early 1900’s by my guess. NM Art Museum is where i got the info. can’t find anything else, looks homemade though not someone that made them all the time. I give up? What is it? 🙂

    • Kym: Poor old Diego de Vargas got himself lost in a time machine from 1595 until 1700, I reckons.

    • Hope the next one is a Nino de Atocha. I’d love to see all the things a Nino de Atocha can appear to be in the minds and consciousnessesses of everyone.

  35. Warm waters halt… at the rio chamita where it meets the little rio grande also. NM game and fish, the Browns like to hang out in slow moving warmer waters than say rainbows and cutthroats, and will bite better at night, hence the flashlight. 🙂 g’nite catch ya 2mrw.

    • Hi Kym: Reckon which one of the Pueblos own that piece of ground? As I recall it would either be San Juan, or San Jose Grant.

      • Really Jules, huh, then we can’t just go tromping around on others pueblos can we? so it has to be on land where we are not illegal or trespassing, unless….. we go at night? lol

      • I did see a vision of a tall native brave holding a spear down by the rio grande one night while driving back from Los Alamos. Maybe he knows it’s there. lol

  36. Have’nt seen these items.The Lady with children reminds me of a MichaelAngelo painting I once had With a women naked like yours with children or cherobs,it was beautiful.Did’nt realize what I had till the Army damage person told me.I purchased it on Base in Germany at the thrift store for 25.00.I staredc at it for some time,and was very drawn in by it.Ask how much they wanted it was all I had.Started to leave,then decided could’nt pass it up.We came home a few months later,and shipment got lost for six months.When we received it,it was damaged bad.Thought it just appeared old,frame and all.When the Army sent someone to access the damage we were told it was priceless Michaelangelo.I rolled it up and put it behind stuff on the shelf.A Lady started stoppping by asking to come in and tell me about God,I agreed.One day as I stepped out of the room,when I came back she was snooping around.Well later that day,wwhen my husband an I returned,our home had been broken into.It was safe,Denver Police never found anyone,and for some reason now I know why that lady never returned.Afew months later my husband an I broke up.When I reached to get my painting he distracted me with a kiss asking me to stay,and I went to Tx without it.I realized what I had done,but it was to late to go back.A few years later my ex husband told me he gave it to Denver Museum or University.My children never got to see it.Someone told me it was Mary Magdalene, maybe one day we’ll see it again.What are the chances of having such a special portrait.It had a newspaper with a storyb of Prague.Had a picture of German leaders stuck behind the painting. It was a golden frame wide and had many cracks in the frame,it was in pieces the domed glass broken.We were very lucky the picture made it.Is that Mary Magdalene.My ex family was from your area.When I found he had gotten rid of it,I was upset,but forgave.This Christmas our son and his family went to CO and he brought back photos I have’nt seen in 37 years.One of the photos has it in our room in Germany before it was destroyed.It’s in a distance,I hope someone can enhance the photo,so they can see it better,if so I’ll send you a copy.It is absolutely beautiful,maybe you’ll see it yourself whereever it is.Tried looking on line before at museum and university with no luck.Take Care

  37. I believe it’s an old jesus sacred heart house blessing art plaque. They have inscriptions on the back that typically have a message written on the back like this “Give them peace” as Chad said. Here’s one that’s very different, but shows the similar idea behind it.

    Here’s another version

    • Stephanie, having seen quite a few Sacred Heart images growing up, I still believe it to be about praying for perhaps a mother and 2 children to get into heaven from purgatory. Maybe Forrest is trying to tell us to look in the area of Purgatory, CO or along the old Spanish trail or ???? Lots of areas to investigate.

      Reminds me that Forrest paraphrased lyrics to an old song, changing it from “Fate deals you five cards in the cradle”, to ” Fate deals you four cards and a joker” and he seems to be a joker! :-D.

    • Noblondes: Snow still on the ground up between Taos and Santa Fe? I’d have thought that triangle of area between Taos – El Vado – Espanola would be fairly melted off by now except in the high altitudes.

  38. For Mr. Fenn…

    As mentioned Dona Eis Requiem is Latin for “give or grant them peace” used in Spanish Catholicism as a prayer for the dead.

    I also agree with Old Jules about the medallion being hung, perhaps at the entrance of a cemetery or mausoleum. He had an interesting comment about it being able to be turned around.

    One thought I had based on some research I had done was from the 1680 Pueblo Indian revolt for the years of mistreatment of the Governors. The attack was on the city of Sante Fe and outlying ranches. The Indians attacked everyone in their path and burned The Church of Assumption, but not before the faithful risked their life for the image of Our Lady. The Lady of Assumption, later known as La Conquistadora had conquered their hearts and soul and had been faithful to her. PERHAPS, this medallion is a piece of Mexican Religious Folk Art depicting this event. Below is a link of the full story.

    I have also included a link for Chronology of Folk Arts in New Mexico which also has some interesting facts.

    Nice piece Mr. Fenn, have fun researching

    • @Virginia,

      Bummer about your painting. I’ve always wanted a painting by one of the greats….and for $20, I could have afforded that one. 🙂 I’m always going into antique stores and flea markets, and still holdout that one day I’ll find “something”.

      Have you tried contacting the museum? I would think that with some planning up front and some email exchanges, they could arrange for you and your children to visit and see it. That’s assuming they haven’t misplaced it somewhere. You wouldn’t think that things like that happen, but I’m sure it does more so than one thinks. I think I read something of Forrest’s that mentioned things like this. I’ll have to find where I read it now. Anyone? Anyone? Bueler?

      Now, if I could just find my misplaced warm waters.

  39. Interesting, because I’ve been singing Pie Jesu the last couple of days, and these words are in that song. Quite the coincidence 🙂
    As everyone has said, the words translate to “rest in peace”.
    Though with the an ointments and flame, I too think about a religious mantel. My grandmothers sister died after birth, and her parents were told by the church they had to pay to have their baby prayed out of hell.
    This painting could be tied similarly. A piece placed where the family could pray their children out of hell.

    And on the topic of the treasure…I was planning on heading out this morning to my spot that I’ve been coveting for weeks, and the weather took a nasty turn for the worse. So no gold on St. Pattys day. *sigh*

    • @Megs

      You can pray your kids out of hell? I never realized. I wondered why my mother prayed so much when my brothers and I were teenagers! 🙂


  40. The painting done with water color it seems, looks like it may have been done some years later due to the lack of damage or aged appearance. Just a quick thought..

    • After looking closely at the piece, it almost seems as if the frame and the painting don’t go together, but what do I know! LOL – Forrest knows more about antiques than all of us put together. 🙂

    • Peter,

      I too was wondering about the apparent aging of the painting vs the frame. It’s so hard to tell from a picture though. I think it may be a moot point, as I do think Forrest likes to share neat things he has collected with all of us. Not everything he shares has to be a clue. However, one still has to wonder.


    • Nice work Kym. I think I’ll run up there and see if I can find the treasure.

      You reckon there’s still snow on the ground up there?

      Hmmm. Heron Lake. Heron Lake. Thanks a bunch.

      • Jules,
        Heron Lake doesn’t open til May 14th, you can link to the closure dates from that site for most NM lakes. 🙂 My vacation is in June, and we are going to Yeoolowstone area 🙂 we’ll savethe closer ones for weekend jaunts 🙂

      • Kim: Joining up with the FennWyomingists? Bummer. Ah well. Someday I’m going up to Heron Lake if I live long enough. But I figure I’m going to need to get that treasure out of the current spot and get it planted safely somewhere else before May. Otherwise I’ll have to stand in line for it.

        Which is to say, it’s not going to be able to be at Heron Lake, unless that’s where I decide to stash it.

        But anywhere below 5000 feet, south of Santa Fe ought to be okay.

        Massacre Canyon, down on the east slope of the Mimbres Divide’s my current preference. I’ve got a bee tree in mind if it’s still there. Leaned up against it backpacking out of there, so I know they’re protective of their turf. I know the box will be safe with them.

        Besides, I owe it to the memory of Victorio for what the taught the US Army about ambush in Massacre Canyon. He saved a lot of lives during WWII and Vietnam by teaching them in a way they wouldn’t soon forget.

        Doubt I’ll tell anyone about it though.

  41. I looked at Heron Lake for a bit. I also looked at Glacier National park. It has a definite warm water halt about it. I was reasoning that the railroad between east and west sides of the park could represent some heavy loads. “Take it in the canyon Down”.. I was thinking “IT” might have been a railroad not a river like the obvious. I was hoping to find a train that was named “something Canyon special” or similar, but no luck.

    The spot had potential, but I decided that it’s just too far for it to be practical to search, After researching, I did find myself wanting to go visit. It looks beautiful. It’s also on the continental divide for those that think that is a viable warm water starting point.


  42. Interesting painting. I know nothing about art. But when I first saw it my thought was it’s a painting of a mother who lost her children and is reaching out wishing she could save them. My 1st thought was she lost then in childbirth or to a miscarriage. But we all bring our own baggage and I can see where others would get flames. I have decided that I will write a poem on this. But I can’t write now because I have to go visit my MIL. What a sad thought that you would have pray young children out of hell. I do not believe that innocents need that. Perhaps we do when we are often prone to curse God for those losses before we embrace him again.

    I have more thoughts but no time for them now. I wish that this thread would stay on topic so I didn’t have to weed through to discover what others think Thank you for sharing. I enjoy trying to get vibes from things. Harder to do when you are looking at a photo than when you are standing somewhere like the St James hotel.

  43. Catholics do not believe you can pray anyone out of hell. 😀 The belief was that people who died who were not immediately condemned to hell, had to go to a “place of purification or temporary punishment” before they could enter heaven and you could help them get there faster by praying for them. Fire is supposed to purify them.

    The nuns really didn’t talk about it a lot though so I had to rely on Wikipedia. 🙂

    • This is true. Catholic belief is that people in hell are there for all etenity.Prayers will not help them. Only in purgatory can your suffering end when you have been delivered from it and enter heaven. The nuns painted purgatory to be very much like hell but with the afore mentioned difference.

      • Since I don’t believe that this old spanish family would adorn their walls or anything else with messages purely about suffering, I take this painting to be conveying a message of hope.

  44. Not familiar with the area, however, would the Petroglyph National Monument with the Three Sisters [Albuquerque Volcanoes] fit in here?

    • Eirene, i jumped on that train awhile back definately some very interesting scenery along the way not to mention an inspiring email from f himself to support the theory.

  45. My cat has been by my side throughout the chase, literally. I’ll have to buy her a gold bracelet if happen to stumble upon a bronze box.

    • My felines have declared you a good person Dazed. They’re just wondering wondering wondering when we’re heading out there figuring, thanks to you, they’re going to get gold bracelets.

  46. Dazed&Confused….from the photo’s I have looked at of the area it is definitely stunning scenery. Would love to visit someday. The area is supposed to be north of Sante Fe right? I guess that this would eliminate Petroglyph National Monument. I should look things up before typing. I keep thinking that the little man carving on the tree was some sort of clue as to the marker on the trail…thus pictograph or petroglyphs…or fire/blaze of some sort. It’s a good thing I am not a part of this hunt as it would drive me’s almost managed that now. 😉

  47. It’s a santo, something that sits or hangs on home altar to the memory of loved ones. “Dona eis requiem” means “let them rest” but the rest of requiem is the rest of death. I’d say it’s a representation and plea: Jesus blessing two people and lifting them above the flames of Hell. Perhaps they did something wrong and didn’t die in peace but the family surely hopes they rest in peace and probably prayed at least once a day on their behalf.

    • Kathy F. I think you are correct. Not that what I think carries any weight, or should carry any weight. But you have my strong vote if you want to run for political office. If I voted in political elections, which I don’t.

      In any case, whenever you post here now I’ll be watching, watching, watching what you say, because I know it will be the truth [as I see it] which sometimes turns out to rhyme with the truths pronounced by others, later.

      If that’s any consolation.

  48. Old Jules let your hairy partners know i’m heading out the first of April. It took some planning with the wife working and the kid in school, not to mention the fact that it’s still a bit frozen where i plan on going. I prefer to minimize the chances for any of us to get hurt, plus it’s less effort with snow and ice out of the equation.

  49. Dazed: I’ll pass that on to them. Do you know what the snow and ice situation is in the not-too-mountainish parts north of Santa Fe? I’d think there might be some on the north faces, but maybe it’s all melted.

    Good hunting to you, the wife and the felines.

  50. Hi, maybes it wais something left over from an early Spanish mission. They had Loy’s of these sorts of things in them. Might have been used in special mass for the dearly departed. Many early Spanish missions didn’t make it during the revolts.

  51. Jules, further north above the line it’s on the melt, temp wise they’ve been having some 40-50 degree days with cool nights. Needless to say the snows on the morphine drip, June should be prime time but my mind & heart refuses to wait that long.

    • Good morning Dazed: Thanks for the info. I’m in gut agreement with you as to chomping at the bit. I’m not so much interested in the snow conditions in the high mountains, nor above the Colorado line.

      What I’m hoping someone will answer me is more along the lines of, if I stood at the edge of the Rio Grande gorge near Taos, would I see snow down there inside the gorge?

      Or if I drove up to El Vado Reservoir and stood on the airstrip, turned around 360 degrees looking for snow at an elevation no higher than me, would I see any?

      Nobody’s answering that sort of question when I post it. I figure it’s because the folks who’ve been the area recently are terrified I’ll find the box if I know there’s no snow on the ground to keep me out of the area as long as possible.

      Or they’re afraid they’ll give the secret of the treasure away by providing an answer to the question.

      I don’t blame them.

      • Hi Old Jules, Taos Gorge: clear as a bell. El Vado: clear as a bell. Up to 10,000 ft, even on some north facing elevations, all around these areas: clear as a bell. And very unfortunate, too, because drought’s a-grippin’ us, and the spring winds will soon blow away all the remaining precious snow, and we just might burn to the ground again. How do I know this? Because I spend more time hiking than I do working. And not just scoutin’ for chests neither…Best go and look now.

      • Thanks Stephan. Preeeeeecisely the sort of information I hoped someone would give me. I’m obliged.

        Yeah, too bad about the drought. But it’s always drought in the high desert if it isn’t flooding, I reckons. Surely is a lot of country needing moisture. Folks who are getting it aren’t being at all grateful for it, either.

        Yeah, I think you’re right. Time I hunkered down and headed for the twilight zone.

        Gracias, J

  52. Jules good morning to you. I’m sure we’ve all debated on whether posting what we know on here i know i sure have. I posted a comment a couple days back about ppl opening opening up and joining forces, it sure looks to me like some have listened. Even if you’ve found the area he hid it, that doesn’t mean you’ll come out the mountains with the box. I sure like the spirit of some opening up and working together.

    • Dazed and Confused: It’s all about having fun, pondering a puzzle, getting into some places each of us wouldn’t have bothered to go otherwise.

      There’s nothing in that box worth the trouble it’s going to be for the person who finds it.

      My only reservation about your thought of a community effort is that there’ll be a better than good chance one of the sharers will head out there and pick it off, show a lot of surprise when he finds it’s gone, group-wise. Which is almost bound to happen.

      Or that a group of friends will find it, and because no formal agreement was detailed in advance because they never actually believed it would be there, end up in a cauldron of ill feeling between themselves over the contents.

      Nothing in that box is worth that, either.

  53. I couldn’t agree with you more. I thought about bringing my brother in on this but i know the type person he is and it would only drive a wedge even further in to a relationship that has been stained for many years. God knows i love him. I believe a small group could work if a binding agreement prior to going out was put in place. I know f doesn’t want it that way which is why i chose my route and the family is going with. Plus my family has a roof over their head,food in the pantry, and good health. What more could one want ?

    • Yes – Like I mentioned before in 2 previous posts – it seems to be about Purgatory! 😀 I read that article before, just never posted the link.

      • Purgatory Springs
        38 23 14 N
        101 37 36 W

        Downer. Chalk one up for the FennColoradoists.

        Sounds as though I’m about to make a trip this side of the Colorado Boundary without finding that box, hauling it down to the Mayar Baba Shrine in Columbus, NM, and starting to give hints about where to find it.

      • The ad at the top of the page leans tastefully in the direction of fly fishing and renting a high-dollar cabin

        History The name Purgatory stems from the Spanish Escalante Expedition during
        the 1700’s.

        Durango, home of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad (D&SNGRR) is
        located in the Animas River Valley and is surrounded by the San Juan Mountains
        in La Plata County, Colorado. The town was organized in September 1880 by the
        Denver and Rio Grande Railroad to serve the San Juan mining district. Durango is
        located at an elevation of 1988 meters (6523 feet). The city is named after
        Durango, Mexico. The word Durango originates from the Basque word “Urango”
        meaning “water town”.

      • I’m spang shot out of the saddle. Thinking hard on not going as far north as Santa Fe until opera season, blowing this entire thing off. I don’t recall ever leaving anything in Colorado I’d care to go back for, aside from the area around Mesa Verde, Cortez, etc.

        I do still need to tromp around Canyon City some more, try to find the ruins of the burned cafe the song Navajo Rug is written about.

  54. Work went easy on this mans old bones today. Old Jules now your speaking my language. I love that area. As a matter of fact the wifey reserved us a room for 3 days up there, looks like i’ll have to go shopping for a new fly rod.

    • Dazed: I hope you find it.

      I’m out of this parade. Got axes to grind and oxen to gore further south. The ones in the Santa Fe area can wait until summer. Need to get out to that Glorietta battlefield and see how many more houses they’ve built on top of it, get to the Veteran Cemetery in SF and tip my hat to a few folks. But I’m not sure at the moment whether there’s anything far north of Santa Fe that won’t wait to see whether I live long enough to find some other reason to go there.

  55. I have a short window to look. Our reservations are for Apr 5th-Apr 9th, lets see whats happens. I’ll document the trip and be sure to take lots of pictures.

  56. Dal, I have been looking this piece over and it seems to be a piece that is given to a family to celebrate the “Mass for the Dead” this is a celebration of the persons souls and in this case it would be 3 people. This would mean that tehy were sick and or died suddenly.

    • Michael-
      You should share your thoughts with Forrest. You can contact him over at his website…
      Doesn’t that look like fire under the faces to you? Someone pointed that out and I have to agree…looks like fire to me…
      Perhaps it is a piece that commemorates three folks who died during the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. A lot of Spaniards were killed by fire and arrows and any other way the indians could kill them in that revolt.

  57. There has been some great discussions regarding these pieces. Dal do you think this is an additional clue to the treasure or just a research exercise Forrest gave us?

    • In my opinion Forrest knows only what he told us. He is really hoping someone will dig up some verifiable additional information.

  58. The picture itself lends meaning to the interpretation of the words.To me it means “The mother mourns the souls of the dead”.That would be more of a spanish interpretation.

  59. To clarify further,” mourns” would be” blesses or receives” if the “mother” was interpreted as mother earth.

  60. The woman appears to be a mother, ample breasts, nursing of children. Back then these children could have been 2? I see only 2 children, maybe a boy and girl, twins? The background is blue, so are we to assume it is outside? Then it would make sends the brownish color below is dirt or mud? Sometimes reading into things muddies the waters! Look at it for what it is, a picture of a woman with 2 kids, the writing can be happy or sad. Where it was found is important but it may not have been its original resting place? That’s all I’m saying


  61. you know , no matter how kewl the piece is , the subliminal stuff hidden in the painting kinda creeps me out . what everyone keeps calling breasts or a female type of torso on the center figure , looks more like a demonic type of masculine face to me . just an observation. and as far as a clue from Forrest goes, i still would be of the opinion that there is a fine looking blaze in the painting.

  62. It appears to me to be a “In Memory” piece of art work…perhaps some monument to a deceased person…who also in my opinion whould have come from a family of financial means to have somethfing of this quality designed.

    Again, I claim no expertise in this area. Literally translated “Dona Est Requiem” is “Grant this Remembrance (memory for the deceased)”.

  63. Dal, where did you find this poem, and what do you know about the author? When was this written? Just curious. Thx! 🙂

  64. I wish I could see it well enough to figure out what it say across the bottom. It really looks to me like the blackish color is writing but unlike someone else I am not so sure of the letters. Depending upon how I look at it the view changes. But below the bold dark lettering I swear I can see a much finer signature that if very faint and I only noticed it when I zoomed way in trying to make out the other. It could be just a trick of the light or the electronic data. But I would love to see it under a microscope or with a lens zoomed in on that area.

  65. Dona Eis Requiem

    A searing pain, swells over her
    Like waves against the shore
    She gasps out in joy and agony.
    She’s been through this before.

    The pain washes strongly over her
    And slithers down her thighs
    she has no fear, She knows that life
    from all this pain will rise.

    Her mama comes to soothe her brow
    and her sister holds her hand.
    It’s a woman’s time – A woman’s bond
    The men don’t lend a hand.

    Through long hard hours, of day and night
    She toils to push them out
    But she’s growing weak, and her blood runs thick, and they all begin to doubt.

    10 miles he road to town and back
    And he almost killed his steed
    He brought the doctor home with him
    But he couldn’t save his seed.

    He held her close as the babies came
    Still as a river stone
    And he saw in the doctors weary eyes
    That they would not sleep alone.

    He buried them all on a rocky hill
    Where the sun would always shine
    He painted his grief writing “Grant Them Rest”
    to place upon their shrine.

    Now all who knew them have gone to dust.
    Where they rest no man can say.
    But the picture he painted so long ago
    Still shares his grief today.

    Patricia Gibson-Williams

    I hope you don’t mind that I shared this here. My humble attempt to share the feeling I got from your pictures. I would love to hear the true story. Or maybe I wouldn’t. Any way I look at the photos I see a sad ending. Or maybe not, because love lives forever. Sorry this hasn’t been edited yet so I hope there aren’t too many typos or rough spots that need smoothing. Thank you for sharing some of the treasures you didn’t hide.

      • Thank you! I’m pleased that you thought it was beautiful.

      • I so glad that I received such a nice comment on this. I was afraid that no one would like it.

        • Words can be so powerful they can cut like a knife and shine like the sun. We lost a twin at birth so every time i look at my son i have to wonder what could have been.

  66. I believe its a painting of a mountain. A map of some sort. Maybe of a valley. If you translate in our native language is reads “da le la pas” or “da nos la pas”.-give (them)us the path )- Ive seen a close variation of this an a cave wall in our search area. The Native used pictures to describe the landscape it was their way of making a map. If I can find the picture ill send it to dal and maybe he will be kind enough to post it.

  67. I believe it’s one of Fenn’s hints that the blaze is a grave marker, according to the Latin on the reverse, and the theme is a Spanish prayer to let the Poor Souls leave Purgatory (fire blazes).

    In my working theory, the blaze would be Helen Hunt Jackson’s grave marker. But also, Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun is part of the solution (clue 8), and perhaps Herbert Edwin Clarke’s “Ballad of the Haunted Glade” somewhere in Strawberry Fields (still working this out). How I am interpreting the underlying “burden” is that it seems to be a theme of dead people everywhere having wanted to be remembered after they’re gone, like what Fenn wants, or at least what he explains using Shakespeare’s As You Like It and the Seven Ages of Man.

  68. It appears to be a mass-produced all-purpose plain white plaster plaque, maybe 19th century. These plaques may have been sold as memorials that could be painted to suit the tastes of the surviving family. Other religious figures could have been added instead. They could have been a standard item available from the town undertaker or the parish priest.

    This particular plaque may illustrate the passing of a mother and two children. Perhaps they perished in an accident or plague. Did they die in a fire? They’re aren’t many of these plaques out there. I couldn’t find a single matching item in many google searches. This may mean it’s one-of-a-kind, perhaps characteristic of a single community or parish of old northern New Mexico. The practices of remote sects often evolved their own unique practices that differed a great deal from Roman dictates. This is still true.

    The painting itself may have been commissioned by the family or the father. It may have been painted by the priest himself who could have picked up art skills somewhere in his educational past. The priest likely knew these people and the family.

    Both sides are painted. Was it viewable from front and back? There is a wire loop embedded in the top of the plaque (in back), so it was meant to be hung in some fashion—from a front door or gate, perhaps. Did it hang from a wooden grave marker for a while? The paint itself does not seem faded so it may not have spent a great deal of time outdoors. It may have been part of an indoor or patio shrine, or maybe it hung somewhere inside the church. Whatever its true history, I’m sure it’s fascinating.

  69. Forgive me for saying so If I am wrong.
    But…only thing that came to mind was Rub -A – Dub Dub Three Men in a Tub!

    granted the figure in the middle could be an angel.. but I have no idea what the heck it really is!

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