Why there's a statue of a woman digging holes in the Netherlands
The treasure of Louis of Nassau
Written by me,
2018, Dec 21
Difficulty rating: Has not been found for over 400 years and it’s guarded by a devil. So… medium?
In a small Dutch hamlet, Mook, there's a statue. The bronze statue shows a woman, digging in the earth with a shovel. The woman nicknamed "Kiste Trui" is considered a local legend.
Her story starts in the spring of 1574, more than a century before Trui was born. The Dutch Louis and Henry of Nassau were moving their army of mercenaries north. Following the flow of the river Meuse. As they neared the town of Mook, the Nassau brothers ran into the Spanish armies. The battle, referred to as the battle of Mookerheide, started in favor of the Dutch. But the Spanish troops were soon joined by reinforcements turning the tables. Many soldiers tried to flee, but got stuck in the marshlands and drowned. Both Louis and Henry were never seen again and thought to have perished at the battle.
The bloodbath spawned many legends. The locals talked about seeing lights hovering over the marshlands. The spirits of the soldiers who died now haunted the area. Another legend was that of the war chest of the Nassau brothers. Consisting of the spoils of war. The iron chest was said to have been buried shortly before the battle near Mook started.
For over a century nobody dared look for the treasure. If the haunted marshland didn't stop you, the stories that the treasure was guarded by the devil certainly would.
"Kiste Trui" wasn't deterred. Enthralled by the stories she took her shovel into the marshlands every day, digging for the lost treasure. Her mania for the treasure drove her insane. She never found the iron chest. Later a chapel was built to free the spirits haunting the marshlands and a bronze statue was erected honoring "Kiste Trui" and her endless search.
If you were to look for this treasure, know that many before you have tried, and failed. For what it's worth, it is said to have been buried near a barn in a town called Riethorst.