The Great Gold Swindle of Lubec, Maine

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In 1897, a stranger named Reverend Prescott Jernegan arrived in Lubec and made a bold claim: he could extract gold from seawater. To do so, he used so-called accumulators of electrically charged rods in iron pots. Fooling many, he actually hid the gold beneath a wharf in the Bay of Fundy during the night. He and his accomplice, Charles Fisher, preached with fervent enthusiasm as they built their factory and encouraged inspections, which reversed doubters to greedy high-stakes investors. Hundreds of laborers accelerated factory expansion until July 1897, when Jernegan and Fisher fled. Although residents of Lubec attempted civil and criminal action, both men relocated, and fantasies of gold wealth flowed away. Relive the excitement, disappointment and anger of turn-of-the-century Mainers in this collection of accounts about the Lubec gold hoax.
ISBN: 9781626190085
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Maine
Images: 35
Pages: 208
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Ronald Pesha has served 11 years as president of the Lubec Historical Society. He is a retired broadcast professor at SUNY Adirondack, and author of Remembering Lubec.
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