July 16, 2024

Doubtful Canyon Stagecoach Loot

Between $28,000 and $30,000 (much more in today’s dollars!) of company assets in Gold as well as likely other valuables in the strong box.

A stagecoach ambush in Doubtful Canyon one mile West of Steins Station on the New Mexico-Arizona state line.

Penfield, Thomas. A Guide to Treasure in New Mexico

STORY: In 1861, a group of Texans, among them John Giddings of the Butterfield Stage Overland Stage Line, were taking company assets West to the California office. They stayed overnight at Stein’s Station, and headed the next morning into the aptly-name Doubtful Canyon, where they were ambushed and slain. The massacre site is only about 1 mile West of Stein’s Station, and their bodies were found two days later by other travellers.

Stein’s Station (not to be confused with the Steins ghost town right off of the Interstate) itself is private land controlled by a local rancher. To the West are public lands, but access is only by rough dirt road from the Arizona side near San Simon or other unmarked roads from the South and North. There is also Wilderness land in the area, but not in the canyon bottom where the trail is.

As with other historical trails and passes, other ambushes may have taken place over the years, so keep your eyes open for other possibilities.

This treasure story general area is shown on the map page.



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