The Associated Press
ALEXANDRIA — A conversation 34 years ago convinced Morton Hurston Jr. there is buried treasure in Central Louisiana, and he thinks he’s found it. One thing stands in the way of him finding out for sure: government permission.
Under the yellow clay soil of the Kisatchie National Forest, Hurston said he believes, is all manner of World War II equipment — tanks, halftrack vehicles, trucks, jeeps and even P-40 fighter planes packed in their original shipping crates.
Hurston, of Baton Rouge, calls this a virtual gold mine of a time capsule, a potential source of exhibits for museums and other military displays. The P-40s, packed in corrosion preventative, might be in mint condition.
“There are only six P-40s flying in the world,” he said. “This could be a very significant historic site.”
Hurston believes the equipment was buried in 1943 at Camp Claiborne, an Army facility north of Forest Hill in Rapides Parish used during World War II, mostly for basic training and artillery practice. Camp Claiborne closed in 1948 and, except for signs on La. 112, little of it remains today....