Polish police on Monday blocked off a wooded area near where a group of treasure hunters believe an alleged Nazi gold train rests. The city of Walbrzych and its surrounding wooded hills are experiencing a gold rush after two men, a Pole and a German, recently informed authorities through their lawyers that they have found a Nazi train with armaments and valuables that reportedly went missing in the spring of 1945.
It is believed to have been spotted by radar in an underground tunnel. Since World War II, people with metal detectors are combing the area its still-used railway tracks. The site rests between the 38th and 40th miles of the tracks that wind from Walbrzych to Wroclaw. Governor Tomasz Smolarz said that police, city and railway guards have now blocked treasure hunters to prevent any accidents with trains on the tracks. Smolarz has requested the military to examine the site with earth-penetrating equipment. Local authorities reported that previous reports of a find have only resulted in rusty pieces of metal. A man taking a selfie on the tracks reportedly narrowly missed being hit.
The gold rush surged after deputy Culture Minister Piotr Zuchowski reportedly said that ground-penetrating devices appeared to show the contours of a train in an underground passage. The thought of the treasures inside has drawn people from as far away as Japan in the hope of finding their own piece of history – despite deputy minister of culture Piotr Zuchowski appealing to them to ‘immediately stop their searching for their own safety.”
A few hectares (acres) of land are now being secured. People have been barred from the woods” “Half of Walbrzych’s residents and other people are going treasure hunting or just for walks to see the site. We are worried for their security. People walking down the tracks can’t escape “a train that emerges from behind the rocks at 70 kph (43 mph).”
The process of searching for the exact location of the train is expected to take weeks. According to the deputy culture minister, a man who claimed to have helped load the gold train said on his deathbed that the vehicle was laced with explosives as a security measure.
Tadeusz Slowikowski is one of the key men who are searching for the Nazi loot and has explained how he first heard about the train and its dark and dangerous history. Slowikowski said: ‘I became aware of the tunnel after saving a German man named Schulz from being attacked by two men. As gratitude for saving him, he told me about the tunnel.’ The story Schulz told him was one of murder, fear and secrets, beginning in the dying days of the Second World War when another German man, then working on the railways, found the tunnel’s entrance. ‘A few Germans carried on living in the area after the war and this one had been working on the railways when he came across the entrance to the tunnel,’ Slowikowski explained.
But the elderly German man eventually plucked up the courage to tell Schulz what he had seen on his deathbed – and this was the information now passed onto Slowikowski. It was enough to pique Slowikowski’s interest in the train, which local legend says is filled with Nazi gold, stolen from the Jews they sent to their deaths in their millions.
In the four decades since, Slowikowski, who is widely recognised in Poland as being one of the leading experts on the missing train, has studied maps and data from the area. Poring over a yellowing, dog-eared map from 1928, he outlined the route from Wroclaw to Walbrzych which clearly shows a siding going into the hillside. Slowikowski said he was given permission in 2003 to begin exploring the area.