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Courtesy photo “Historian and longtime White Sands Missile Range public affairs official Jim Eckles”

Victorio Peak: one hundred tons of gold or one hundred tall talesa

By contributing writer MICHAEL WILSON

Taos County Historical Society hosts author Jim Eckles Saturday, June 3.

Whatever happened to that 100 tons of gold and other treasure hidden in Victorio Peak on White Sands Missile Range? Was there really more gold in Victorio Peak than in Fort Knox? Did vice-president Johnson fly a helicopter to the site and sneak off with the booty? A tale of buried gold, coated with conspiracy, is something made for Hollywood, especially considering the treasure’s very existence is in question.

Historian and longtime White Sands Missile Range public affairs official Jim Eckles is set to provide a gold mine worth of information about Victorio Peak as the Taos County Historical Society’s June speaker. He will relate some of the peak’s history and answer these and other questions about the legendary lucre of Victorio Peak Saturday, June 3, 2 pm, in the Kit Carson Electric Coop boardroom, 118 Alta Vista Road, in Taos.

Eckles worked in the Public Affairs Office at White Sands from 1977 to 2007. He just missed the gold search in early 1977 when Dan Rather was there for “60 Minutes,” but was there for the multi-year effort in the 1990s. He has been inside the peak, kicked rocks up and down its exterior, and listened to a multitude of stories and anecdotes about it. He says it was an interesting break from the typical bureaucratic work he faced piloting his desk in Public Affairs. Eckles has also written extensively about the missile range and the Trinity Site. He has two books out on those topics and frequently lectures about them

Questions or further information? Call Michael Wilson at (612) 743-6546.