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Story Alleges a Dad Found a Buried Chain After Landscaping His Yard and Instantly Regretted It. Here’s the Truth

Claim:

A father named Liam Ward followed a buried chain and found a hidden treasure trove in his backyard.

Rating:

Rating: False

Context:

While this story was nothing but fiction, Snopes was able to find the origins of the photo of the chain, including details about what was found after it was pulled out of the ground.

 

In late 2023 and early 2024, Facebook users promoted a story with the caption, “Dad Finds Buried Chain After Landscaping Yard, He Instantly Regrets It.” The posts all showed an interesting picture of a person with a green shovel appearing to try to figure out why a chain was buried underground.

Snopes looked for answers regarding both the story and the origins of the photo.

‘Dad Finds Buried Chain’

On March 31, 2024, the Abandoned Things Facebook page shared a post with the caption about a father finding a buried chain and then instantly regretting it. The same photo and caption was also shared in dozens of other Facebook posts.

https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=pfbid02L4eXQLfJEQ52i6Z7w2oP6Ddm836sx1suUnHKwJDzWpjBMTZp6aXKszEEyByrjQnVl&id=61553463234439&__cft__[0]=AZWS_qeuk0FgpRrV_EI2iQgtyWoT_5Njng0FSgb7rpEeuLQf4te-ghnaGXXTHdI2funabSagdjhvvKHPnOBozbaIkcDr-P_YLUaQN_Bip3LBvCa_m_oifsY25roBhyK-LszOdDVIqqklAzAbCmZcCiC1mtNOG7_02dTYS16SbWhiByZTQ0wfurNkprqiS-stEdQ&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R

A comment under the post featured a link to the xnews6.com website containing the following article:

Dad Finds Buried Chain After Landscaping Yard, He Instantly Regrets It

Liam Ward has uncovered a hidden treasure trove beneath his seemingly ordinary backyard. What started as the discovery of a mysterious buried chain has transformed into a significant archaeological find, revealing a network of underground tunnels and hidden chambers dating back to the prohibition era.

Liam Ward, a homeowner known for his curiosity, found the chain one Saturday morning and, driven by intrigue, decided to pull on it. Little did he know that this act would set off a chain of events leading to the revelation of a hidden world beneath his property.

As the chain resisted removal, Ward delved into the history of the area. His research uncovered stories of disused mines, rumors of buried pirate treasure, and tales of tunnels used during prohibition to smuggle alcohol. His investigations led him to a 1920s newspaper article detailing the notorious gangster Vincent “the snake” Moretti, who was said to have hidden a stash of jewelry and money before disappearing.

Fueled by the possibility of unearthing a piece of history, Ward enlisted the help of local historians and treasure hunters. Together, they formed a team armed with metal detectors and historical knowledge, gathering at Ward’s property. The metal detectors quickly signaled the presence of hidden objects.

Excavation revealed a cache of wooden crates marked with Moretti’s signature, containing prohibition-era alcohol untouched for decades. The team continued their exploration, discovering hidden chambers with valuable antiques and documents shedding light on the town’s secret history.

Recognizing the historical significance of the find, the town decided to preserve the tunnels and chambers as a museum. Ward and his family, appreciative of the town’s history, moved to a nearby house offered by the mayor to facilitate preservation efforts.

Ward’s backyard discovery has become a symbol of the town’s resilience and the enduring allure of the past. The museum has drawn visitors from across the country, turning Ward into a local hero and inspiring him to pursue a career in archaeology. His passion for history now benefits enthusiasts and scholars alike.

What began as a mysterious chain buried in a backyard has transformed [Town Name]’s history. Liam Ward’s inadvertent discovery has not only enriched the town’s historical narrative but has also opened a window into a bygone era, captivating the imaginations of residents and visitors alike. The archaeological treasure trove beneath Ward’s property stands as a testament to the enduring power of history to captivate and inspire.

However, this story was nothing but fiction. A Google search found no record of anyone named Liam Ward following a buried chain to a hidden treasure trove in his backyard. Further, the story did not name the town where these events supposedly occurred. In fact, the final paragraph included the words “[Town Name]’s history.” Someone apparently forgot to fill in the brackets before publishing the article.

This story told a kind of tale known as glurge — a sentimental or heart-rending story undermining its own inspirational message by distorting or ignoring the facts.

The Photo’s Origins

The picture of the person with the green shovel and the chain coming out of the ground was originally shot in Alabama in 2019. It was a still frame from a video captured by the Exploring Alabama YouTube channel.

According to one of the videos, a bulldozer was used to pull the 13-foot (4-meter) chain out of the ground. The people involved found the chain was attached to an old 6-foot (1.8-meter) piece of railroad track. They also located several decades-old old bottles, including two for Lucky Tiger hair tonic.

The same moment that appeared in the posts and articles above with the chain in the ground can be seen at the 2:16 mark in this video:

The chain is pulled up at the 4:36 mark in this other video:

In other words, the videos from Alabama may have involved a father but the real story of the chain involved nothing about landscaping in someone’s backyard or discovering a hidden treasure trove, nor did anyone express any regret, as the false story claimed.

Sources:

“Exploring Alabama.” YouTube,