Growing up, Maria’s grandfather enjoyed telling outrageous bedtime stories. Making wild claims about his father’s dealings with pirates and discovering buried treasure, there seemed to be no end to his exciting tales. They always took the stories with a grain of salt – because pirates weren’t around anymore…right?
He even claimed that his father had actually found the buried treasure of Jose Gaspar, the Spanish pirate who vowed to take revenge on Spain. They assumed grandpa was making things up to impress the kids and never actually expected to find proof of his outlandish claims.
Maria was with her brother, Mike, cleaning out her grandparents’ attic when she discovered a worn looking box. When she opened it up, she couldn’t believe what she saw. She told Mike right away!
Inside of the box was a severed human hand with an 18th century ring still attached. There were coins displayed underneath, which experts think are Spanish and Portuguese. There was a photography of their grandfather’s father at his wedding (Eve and Ernesto Lopez), and a blueprint of Tampa, Florida from the 1920’s.They may never find out the story behind this strange and ghastly family secret, but the experts at a local antique shop claimed it was gruesome and authentic.
Either my great-grandfather made the best, most elaborate pirate hoax ever and never shared it with anyone or he really did find some treasure on the Hillsborough River,” Maria said.
Maybe their great-grandparents really were pirates. Unfortunately, that fact will remain a mystery! At least they have this awesome family heirloom to pass down for generations!
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