Treasures are buried in secret, but they rarely stay that way. In fact, the longer a treasure is buried, the more people tell stories. These legends may seem overblown, but treasure hunters should not dismiss them. These source materials are valuable. Here are a few tips to leverage old lore, local legends, historical scripts, regional stories and more.
1. Look for details. When you are looking at source materials, pay attention to the details. Things that indicate direction or distance may be quite literal. Look for any mention of major landmarks. It is useful to have a copy of the source material to carry with you while you search. This allows you to compare the words to the landscape for better understanding.
2. Think creatively. While some details are literal, other interpretations are figurative. When stories and legends are created about treasure, they often rely on embellishment. Therefore, apply as many meanings as possible. If the story talks about the heart of a forest, consider everything from the biggest tree to the largest rock. You never know which interpretation will pay off.
3. Find corroborating evidence. Not all sources are created equal. Stories and legends change over time as people retell them. Therefore, some meaning can be lost. In order to make sure you are getting the most out of any story or legend, reference other versions of the same tale. As you compare source materials, pay attention to the details that come up more than once. If something is consistent across multiple versions, then it is more likely to be true.
There is no way to know for sure if a source material is valid or not, but using these tips is still worthwhile. You can never be sure. One clue can be the key to finding your treasure.