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Pinkerton Puzzle

A cache by dgauss Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 08/16/2009
2 out of 5
2.5 out of 5

Size: Size:   small (small)

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Geocache Description:

A puzzle cache in Rice County Wilderness Park.

"Who are those guys?" is the oft-quoted question from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, in the movie bearing their names, regarding their relentless pursuers. The pursuers were none other than the Pinkerton agents.

Founded in 1850 as a private forerunner to the FBI the Pinkerton Detective Agency had many successes besides driving the Hole-in-the-Wall gang members out of the country. They detected an early plot to assassinate Pres. Lincoln, infiltrated the Molly Maquires, and broke up the Reno Gang.

They were least successful in their pursuit of the James-Younger Gang. In March of 1874, one of their agents got caught snooping around the James farm near Kearney, Missouri , was kidnapped and hauled across the Missouri river, shot and killed. A few days later, John and Jim Younger got the drop on two more agents and made them give up their gunbelts. One of the agents used his backup piece, a derringer, to shoot John in the throat. The Youngers shot back. By the time the smoke cleared only Jim Younger survived. In 1875, the Pinkertons led an illegal, nocturnal raid on the James farm in which the house was fire-bombed killing Frank and Jesse's younger half-brother and shattering their mother's right hand so badly it had to be amputated. The raid backfired in that afterwords the James brothers, who were not in the house, received much public sympathy and aid. An inquest was held, but the clock ran out before enough evidence could be gathered to prosecute the agency.

Later, several messages were found which clearly implicate the Pinkertons. These telegrams were encoded using the scheme revealed in the following correspondence from Allen Pinkerton to a new operative:

"...I send you a form of 'cypher' telegraphing which I sometimes use, and which I may telegraph to you. I will also suppose the following to be a telegram, you will observe how I will write it out.

weather rainy and probably snow
we shall get all our
trees in order and likely
to save every one of
them from winters storms our
horses and mules are in
splendid condition they will get
along the sheep are good

The following is the form the message passes over the wires.

good get in our of likely our snow weather we trees to them horses splendid along are will are storms one and all probably rainy shall in save from and condition the sheep they mules winters every order get and


Then he goes on to explain some of the code words, such as chicken for Jesse James, and how the plaintext array was transformed into the coded message. But you can figure that out.

The posted coordinates will take you to the parking lot in the park. From there the message below, which was encoded using essentially the same method as illustrated above, will direct you to the cache.

log four up hollow between one seven two up trail four nine hundred sign two east pass eight one log hill foot sign to points twenty way through post post trail to for eight eight then steps branch post stop nine on thirty high stump feet left and half three at at follow feet degrees

Additional Hints (No hints available.)