WEIRD NEWS

Old Hand Found In Florida Attic With Coins And Treasure Map

04/29/2015 01:52 pm ET

If you've ever cleaned out a grandparent's attic, you know that you might find some weird things up there. One Florida family recently discovered that this can include a hand.

Mike Lopez told NBC affiliate WFLA that his sister was cleaning out their grandparents' attic when she found a wooden box with a wedding photo of their great-grandparents, a Tampa-area map, some coins and what appears to be a human hand all arranged inside.

hand attic found

The map bears the word "Gaspar," and Lopez told WFLA he thinks it may be connected to the legend of a late-18th and early-19th century Florida pirate José Gaspar, who was also known as "Gasparilla." There is even an annual festival in his honor.

Despite Gaspar's place in Tampa-area culture and folklore, there is no proof he was real, and the myth may have originated with a railroad company advertisement in the late 1800s, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

"Well, that certainly is a hand," Tampa Bay History Center Curator Rodney Kite-Powell says in footage from the news station. Kite-Powell said the treasure map is likely a blueprint from the 1920s or 1930s, and the coins look too thin to be authentic Spanish treasure, or even very old.

"I just don't know what to make of it aside from the fact that it's probably not José Gaspar's hand," he said.

While the hand appears to be real, experts who have seen it are still uncertain. "The jury is still out," WFLA reporter Jeff Patterson says in the video above.

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