Climax’s barrel full of gold

Published 7:35 pm Tuesday, February 2, 2010

There’s an interesting story going around in Climax, about a barrel supposedly full of gold.

The story is true, although not perhaps as mysterious and exciting as some might be led to believe, according to Climax Police Chief Joel Jenkins.

About three weeks ago, Chief Jenkins—who is also a reserve Sheriff’s deputy—was contacted about a 50-gallon drum that had been kept in the back of a 1977 Ford pickup truck.

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It’s that drum, or what once may have been inside it, which has people all abuzz.

According to Jenkins, the old truck formerly belonged to the late Frank Paul “Two Shadows” Bloom, of Decatur County, who died in 2009 at the age of 53.

It seems that Bloom, who was an avid coin collector, may have filled the drum with a large number of gold and silver coins, along with some important personal papers, for safekeeping.

When Bloom died, he left the old truck—with the drum in its cargo bed—to a friend who took possession of it. It sat unused in the friend’s yard until they decided to sell it to another party. Only then were the contents of the drum uncovered.

Although there are some questions about the size and value of Bloom’s original collection, Jenkins said he is in possession of a box full of valuable silver coins.

The police chief said he is currently consulting a local judge to determine if the recovered coins can be legally returned to Bloom’s surviving mother.

Climax correspondent Jean Ann Ouzts contributed to this story.