In the late 1800s, General Samson Jonas Morgan made a shrewd decision whose consequences would affect the future family tree for generations. He invested his army retirement funds in railroads. General Sam was not disappointed in the stunning return on his money. There seemed to be no choice but to become filthy rich.
To the delighted approval of his wife, Hannah, and three sons, he bought several acres of prime property near town and built a fine estate. Sam had definite ideas about the landscaping, hence the hundreds of cedar trees planted around the perimeter of his opulent domain.
He wanted the aromatic saplings spaced at exact intervals, rather like soldiers lined up for inspection, or even standing guard. Their imposing presence was strangely comforting to him. He was in the middle of the weekly scrutiny of his beloved wood sentinels the day he keeled over dead. None of the heartless evergreens even noticed.
Two of the Morgan boys followed in their fatherís footsteps and joined the Army. The youngest, Andrew, later nicknamed Flash, was exempt from any doughboy activities. By the time World War I ended in 1918, he was an only son.
Hannah up and died of a burst appendix without ever hearing the bad news. Thatís how she missed the arrival of one small, innocent looking trunk. A scribbled note from the now deceased brothers was stuck on the inside.
ď Andy Boy, we are about to embark on a dangerous military mission and must make immediate arrangements for the contents within. Keep it safe.Ē
Andrew Morgan, sole owner of the Generalís palatial manor, was certainly perplexed. After careful consideration he made a wise decision. It must be buried. He was extremely wealthy, but he also knew life was unpredictable. This treasure would be his insurance.
Andrew married Miss Julia Louette Simpson, lately of Atlanta. She had golden red hair and piercing blue eyes. Morgan Manor was the perfect place to showcase her delicate charm and impeccable social graces.
Drew, as she called her adoring husband, became fascinated with photography. On a lark, he decided to go into the postcard business; not the plain kind the post office had begun selling way back in 1873, but unique ones with a personís picture on one side. He set up a little studio near the train depot. More money followed.
Andrew gave Julia a little silver frame in which she put their own three by five photograph taken by their son Charlie. The pleasing black and white image of husband and wife sat on the mantle in the cozy library. It stayed there for decades.
By 1985, Charlie and his sickly spouse had died and their two spoiled girls, Abigail and Anna, lived in Morgan Manor. Most of their time was spent roaring through the family fortune like a destructive tornado. Drew was sorry he had given them cart blanche with the checkbook. They didnít have a lick of sense and even less concern for Grandpa and Grandma.
Heaven knows Andrew and Julia tried to instill some knowledge of Godís word but Charlieís pitiful progeny had no interest in eternal things, claiming to be agnostics, as if they even knew what that meant. In a quest for more money, the silly creatures decided to sell all the cedar trees to a big furniture manufacturer.
Drew was horrified to think of Morgan Manor without his fatherís cherished timber. Now seemed a good time to exhume the buried treasure.
Years ago he had carefully recorded the location of the almost forgotten trunk, but the foolish young women had no clue. Anyway, they were fighting like mad dogs.
The library was filled with ugly screams and breaking glass. Their fed-up grandfather intended to put a stop to the absurd melee just as the old silver frame came flying through the door. In one of those amazing perfect moments, Flash Morgan caught it.
After he sent them packing he changed the will and cancelled the illegal deal to sell the family trees. For a while, he gazed tenderly at the postcard picture of two people in love, then slipped it out of the frame and read the back.
Psalm 104:16, then 7 paces right of #3 - Dig.
Flash Morgan and his bride of sixty-five years enjoyed a lovely trip. There are none so blind as those who cannot see, but they sent scripture postcards to Abby and Anna anyway. Maybe this time the poor girls would get the message.
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