Man Digs 40-Meter-Deep Hole in His Kitchen After Dreaming He Would Strike Gold

A Brazilian man tragically lost his life by plunging down a deep shaft he had dug in his kitchen after dreaming that there was gold buried deep under his house.

71-year-old João Pimenta da Silva’s dream of enrichment ended as a nightmare that claimed his life. His lifeless body was found at the bottom of an exceptionally deep well he and his neighbors had dug under his kitchen in Ipatinga, a municipality in Brazil’s Minas Gerais state. The man had reportedly dreamt that there was gold deep under his home, and that all he had to do was dig to get to it. He even told his neighbor about his dream and even though he was laughed at in the beginning, da Silva was actually able to convince the man to assist him with the digging. Unfortunately, the treasure hunt ended in disaster when the 71-year-old plunged to his death while trying to exit the 40-meter-deep hole.

According to Antônio Costa, the neighbor who helped João Pimenta da Silva dig, the old man was trying to get rid of the water and mud at the bottom of the shaft when he fell to his death. They had lowered a pump into the hole and managed to remove several buckets of water, but da Silva wanted to go down into the hole to check something for himself. As Costa was lowering him into the well, the would-be treasure hunter asked him to pull him back up, but as he started to ascend, João somehow slipped from the swing-like device, and his arm became entangled in the swing’s rope.

“I tried to hold him, alone, there was no way to ask for help,” Costa told the police. “But if I kept holding on, he would have dragged me down as well. I only heard the noise as he hit the bottom.”

Firefighters called to the scene found João Pimenta da Silva dead at the bottom of the deep well. He exhibited polytrauma, open fractures on both legs, a hip fracture, lacerations of the abdomen, widespread abrasions, and no signs of life.

After examining the deep shaft in João Pimenta da Silva’s kitchen, investigators were shocked by how the old man had managed to dig a well “so deep with a stable structure that borders on perfection”. Neighbors claimed that the pensioner had experience digging wells, but considering the extreme depth – the equivalent of a 13-story building – he would have needed advanced equipment to carry out such a dig. Meanwhile, all they found in his home were rudimentary digging tools.


There are still many unanswered questions about João Pimenta da Silva death and the hole that caused it, but since the man’s family didn’t even know about his treasure hunt, they will probably remain unanswered.

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