Is there something more exciting than a captured message from the 19. Century who is not deciphered until today?
Yes, that’s what there are: two folded news from the 19. Century, which are not only uneven, but on top of that the hiding place of a valuable treasure could reveal.
This is the case with the so-called beale-ciphering the case, which has been pulling closure experts (cryptologists) and treasure experts in about 120 years. It is one of the most famous cryptological councils overhead. Just a pity that there is legitimate doubts about the existence of the alleged treasure.
Everything we know about the beale-cipher is in a book that was published in 1885 by an american publisher called james ward. If one believes the report contained therein, then the history of the advisable messages in 1817 took its beginning, as a group of 30 buffeljagers in a gorge in new mexico opened their night camp. The men just wanted to take dinner as one of them discovered a yellowish glossy material in a rocky column. No doubt: it was gold.
The treasure of the buffeljager
In view of this fund, the men ended the buffel hunt and searched in the gorge on the valuable precious metal. After 18 months, the 30 jagery had enough gold and plenty of silver found to allow all of them a life in prosperity. Some of the men – including a certain thomas beale now on their way home to virginia. This meant a journey from the wild west in civilization at that time. While beale spent winter in the washington hotel in lynchburg (virginia) after departure of his companions, he hid the gold treasure in a safe place nearby. While his stay, beale met the director of washington hotel. This hover robert morriss and was obviously a trustworthy person. Morriss should play an important role in the course of history.
This book from the year 1885 is the only known source to the beale-cipher. Probably the story paid therein is freely invented.
In the spring of 1821 beade returned to new mexico to his colleagues. These had continued successfully gold and silver in the meantime. The next 18 months also proved to be productive. Towards the end of 1823 beade traveled to lynchburg again to deposit another cargo in his hiding place. In addition to gold and silver, a few jewels came to the beads of easier transport for the valuable metals.
At his second visit to lynchburg, beale also wore a locked box with himself, which he had to move to the trustworthy hotel director morriss to the custody. After beales departure, morriss received a letter from st. 1823. Louis. In it beade asked the hotel director to keep the box by carefully. If no one was picked up within ten years, morriss should break it and follow the instructions listed therein. These instructions, beale wrote, were partially captured and only love with a secret formation, which should send a friend of beale after the end of the ten-year deadline to morriss. Morriss did, as his earlier hotel guest had applied, and hood the most advisable box over the years as his eyeball.
But nobody ever came to pick up the box. In june 1834, the ten years had just passed. Now morriss waited for a letter with the contested secret formation, but one of them never met. So the duty-conscious hotel director fell for another eleven years before he spent the mysterious box in 1845. He found them three casual messages as well as a writing of beads addressed to him. In this, this explained the story with the hidden treasure and demanded morriss to decelerate the three news. The first should reveal the situation of the treasure, the second of its content. The third message should contain a list of 30 people (or their owned) a share of treasure condition. Morriss should be around the salvage and distribution of the wealth of lizards, for which beale beale has a sorrowful platform of the treasure.
The three locked messages passed from numbers separated by commas. In the first stood 520 numbers, which were between 1 and 2906, in the second were 763 numbers (between 1 and 1.005) and in the third 617 (between 1 and 975). The complete messages are also available online. Since morris had never received the benowed secret information, he could not decline the three news. He tried to crack the code. He did not succeed. In 1862 – at the age of 84 – he finally introduced a friend whose identity is not handed over. This friend managed to decipher the second of the three beale-cipher. The key to the US independence.
(1) DEREN (2) Worder (3) Hattete (4) Dhe (5) Vend of the end (6) Ofurnace (7) wIE (8) Disen (9) SATZ (10) Ducharted (11) uND (12) mIT (13) DEN (14) Anfang letters (15) eine (16) Tabslle, (17) wIE (18) DIE (19) fold ends (20) aset:
After numbering of the entire independence clarification, he received a table that mapped some numbers to each letter. When closing, he adopted one of the associated numbers for each letter of the text. This method is belonging to the family of so-called homophonic closure processes. These are characterized by the fact that there can be multiple secret text characters for a letter, with frequent letters having more equivalents than rare. If one sets a homophone closure process properly, then each secret letter is often the same, which prevents a dechipment by the numbers of letters. The second message had (translated in german) the following wording:
I have in the district of bedford, about four miles of buford’s (at lynchburg), in a ditch or a hollow the under the following objects six fub under the surface. These objects in common are common to the parties whose names are given in (message) number three. The first cargo, which was deposited in november 1819, consisted of 1.014 pounds of gold and 3.812 pounds of silver. The second cargo comes from december 1820 and consisted of 1.907 pounds of gold and 1.288 pounds of silver as well as jewels in st. Louis were exchanged to facilitate transport, and the 13.000 dollars are worth. The above objects are securely packed in iron fabric with ice caps. The hollow is roughly covered with stone lines, and the faub rest on solid stone and are covered with such. Message number 1 describes the exact location of the hollow, which can be found easily.
BEALES friend also tried to loose the other two cipher, but that did not succeed. Thus he finally wrote the said book in which he paid the entire history of the beale treasure and thus held the three locked messages as well as writing to morriss for the subtworld. In 1885 he asked the publisher james ward to unopolit this font. His name ignoring morriss’ unknown friend, not to be bursting of treasure treasures.
How to imagine easily, the publication of the beale font rushes on coarse interest. Cryptologists and those who held themselves dazzled on the faded news and searched for solution paths. Several people made the search for the beale treasure for their life task. For 1.325 kilograms of gold, 2.313 kilograms of silver as well as jewels in unknown amount they took pretty much every effort. The total value of the treasure was allowed to lie at about 25 million euros – the value of the media rights is not counted.
To date, treasurer with metal detectors are traveling in and around lynchburg, and in numerous places there are traces of excavations. Some particularly triest beale fanatics also blewed punches in the ground or busted graber in the cemetery. No wonder that the inhabitants of lynchburg are not particularly good to talk about the golden visitors.
So the thing with the beale-cipher also sounds – with certain probability you are not more than a joke. The numerous evidence does not allow any other conclusion. A gross weak point is, for example, the source. Everything we know about the treasure and its hiding place comes from the book published by WARD from 1885. None of the crucial points of history is confirmed by a second source.
Although there were popular paying documents in 19. Century indeed americans who ply thomas beade. But no one likes to identify themselves as the person you are looking for. The identity of the other buffeljager is unknown, as well as the place where the manner should be stabbed on gold. After all, there was the hotel director morriss really, but no historian has found an indication of the mysterious box in his environment. When the beale font was published, morris was long dead. Also no one who should have been his friend, who was published in 1885 the publisher published the report on the treasure. So everything belongs to a cleverly constructed story, which is designed so that the essential contents can not be checked.
For a joke also speaks the beale story itself. It is credible that goldschurtforts can be transported the yornthears for years of work over thousands of kilometers in a hiding? Why did not you split the gold with each other to disconnect? Why has nobody picked up the box at morriss? Why did every one of the 30 men have taken his secret to the grave? It is also unclear how beale has transported the treasure. If one believes the second beale message, then the gold and silver had to have weighed about 3.6 tons together – who wanted such a cargo on thousands of kilometers by the wild west?
Linguistic analyzes also have doubts. The texts beales contain the words "stampede", "appliance" and "improvise", who will first emerge last year later in other documents from virginia. However, a different argument is a different argument: linguistics have discovered numerous similarities between the BEALES writing style and the anonymous author’s. It could certainly be that both texts come from the same author.
Also, the news itself give ratsel. Why are there three of them, although one satisfied? Why did the author used different closure procedures? If one goes out of a joke, then all this would be insistent: the second, determined message announces the content and the approximately the alleged treasure known and thus awakens curiosity. The two other parts, which may only contain nonsense, are thus all the more exciting.
With a krypto historian also come quickly. The homophone process used for the closure of the second message pays the best, which the cryptology in the early 19. Century to offer. Even if the sealant did not apply it properly, a question arises: could have a buffeljager around the year 1820 such cryptological expertise? As a reminder: the methods used in the secession war used in the secession war were large part significantly worse. In any case, beale had to have acted a pretty educated buffeljager, because the texts written by him do not point to a short village school career.
If one goes out of the year 1885, then the thing becomes clearly plausible. In the decades before, the cryptology in the towing of the ever-popular expectant telegraph had a significant leap forward. Last but not least, by the separation war, kryptological knowledge was now significantly further widespread. For an american with appropriate education and interest in cryptology, a homophone casting at this time was certainly no witches mill more.
However, these are all only indexes, but no hard evidence. But they are also available. Historians have figured out that morris took the washington hotel only in 1823 – at this time beade had already handed the box according to the BEAL-scripture already. Morriss has been in his life memories perhaps with the annual numbers? Possible, but why is the dating of the letter right with its information? Somebody has mistaken? Everything very unlikely.
The following proof is the following proof of the hoax theory: in the beale font, the independence declaration is printed, which delivers the key for the second message. However, there are a few errors. Surprisingly, the reproachment only provides the correct result with this wrong version. Had beale and the anonymous author due to a coincidence the same faulty transcript of independence recognition? Unlikely, because this wrong version does not appear anywhere else. So it is already a certain MAB at reality remote necessary if you still want to believe in the beale treasure.
And what does the cryptology say?
Even if the beads sweetheart is likely to be an invention, the two remaining messages could certainly have a content. Cryptological examinations do not lack. As a very significant beale-cipher expert, the computer science professor carl hammer applies. He was the first to analyzed the three slipped messages with a computer. He could not loose her, but he found interesting details out.
So hammer fell up that the author had not used the homophone cipher for the second message not really properly. Instead of paying attention to the same frequency of numbers, preferred the sealer each numbered numbers, which gave up edits. In addition, the cap contained some errors. It can therefore be amed that the author of the beale-cipher was not really caring.
Statistical analyzes suggest that the first and third news are closed on a similar way. However, the letter distribution is not as flat as with the second, already determined. It could be that these two are word codes. This means that every number for a particular word is. The key is a kind of word book in this case. Word codes are at least since the renaissance time, and they were partly very popular. The frequency of the respective numbers as well as some other observations fit very well. However, why should the author of BEAL-CIPLD have made the muhe to develop a code book when it’s easier. Or has it just used an existing code book that has been lost in the meantime?
And what should be at all in the two locked messages? The location of the alleged treasure certainly not. Some incorrigible hope, it is another treasure – for example one of the commodized from the secession war. Another template provides the fact that james ward was masonic. Should he spare some conspiratorys with the two locked texts? Unfortunately, this is all speculation. Much more likely is that the deciphering results in a text that enters the joke. Or thus obtain a text that gives up new ratsel, and thus re-ignore the interest?
Maybe the two unpose messages are in reality of non-reflective data mull. If this is not the case, then this is difficult to prove. In 1980, the US computer scientist james gillogly published an investigation that the nonsense hypothesis 1. Gillogly tried to decelerate the first message in the same way as the second. This idea was not new, and so nothing makes sense out. For his surprise, gillogly die in the result on the letter sequence abfdefghiijklmnohpp. Under the inclusion of two mistakes made when the second message is taken, it became abcdefghiijklmnoppopp. This episode has such a rough similarity with the alphabet that it can hardly be a coincidence. There are therefore two options: on the one hand, a further reproduction could lead to clear text; on the other hand it could be nonense. Gillogly brings some arguments that strong the SCHABERNACK THEORY.
Is edgar allan poe of true authors of beale history? This seems possible, but remains speculation.
Finally, the question remains who stuck behind the beale-schabernback. Highly likely ward ward about the dizziness. Whether he was the author, or if someone has prepared him, seems more departal. But among hobby historians, it is a widespread confidence to bring some celebrities into play in such traps. In the case of beale-cipes, the prominent suspicious edgar allan poe is called. The well-known US writer should have written the beale font in the eyes of some hobby researchers. Even if it is – as mostly in these cases – there are no historical traces, you have to pay the representatives of this thesis some useful arguments. Poe was passionate for cryptology. An invented story for a gold treasure would certainly have to be trusted, especially since the background history has literary character. Also stylistic analyzes show some parallels between the beale font and poes work. But all this has no evidence. Kryptologically interested slit ears with literary talent certainly gave many, and wild-west stories have liked to read. Therefore, as a conclusion remains: we will not know so quickly who was the true author.
The article was taken from the author’s just published book: klaus schmeh: codeknacker against codemacher. The fascinating history of the shutter. W3L verlag, 2007
Klaus schmeh is computer scientist with specialty cryptography and a part-time journalist. He is a member of the company for the scientific examination of paraj sciences (GWUP) and their regional group rhein-ruhr. His personal homepage.