“Joaquin’s Gold” is a western adventure set in 19th Century California. Its main character is Joaquin Murrieta, the famous bandit. It’s based on Central California legends and is set in Pinnacles National Park. I wrote it for my 8th grade students thirty years ago and have rewritten it many times since. Beryl Belsky kindly published the story on her Writer’s Drawer website, but the link is no longer available
I’ve made both the story’s text and a common core short story unit for “Joaquin” available on the TPT site:
Joaquin has become one of my favorite characters. I’ve written eight stories for him and for California long before freeways. I hope to make them all available for teachers in the next few years!