National Treasure: Book of Secrets

Question: Why does the president ask Ben to look for the page 47 of the book for him if he, as president, has access to the entire book?

Chosen answer: He asks him to investigate what's on page 47, not to just read the page.

Grumpy Scot

Question: Why was the playfair cipher on the missing page invisible? Thomas Gates wrote it in normal ink.


Chosen answer: Thomas Gates didn't write it in normal ink. He wrote in pencil. The cipher wasn't written on that page, it was written on the facing page and minute bits "transferred" onto the page with the names.

shortdanzr Premium member

Question: How does finding the treasure clear Thomas Gates of plotting Lincoln's death?


Chosen answer: Because it verifies the story that the Gates family has passed down, that the pages were burned to protect the city of gold's location, not to hide his name as a plotter.


Question: Just curious what was on page 47 that the President asked Ben Gates to help him with. Was it finding the City of Gold?

Chosen answer: It is never explained what was on the page. It was just a cliffhanger to set up for a 3rd movie, I think.

Question: What did Ben Gates know about Mitch Wilkinson that made him know that Mitch "NEEDED" to find the City of Gold?

Chosen answer: It wasn't that Mitch knew anything about him, just that like himself family history was very important to him. Mitch needed to find the city of gold to redeem his family name in that it was his family that was traterious in the past not Ben's.


Question: Why was Thomas Gates' name on that page?

Chosen answer: Gates' name was added by Wilkinson to get Ben to do all the work in finding the treasure (as that would prove Thomas's innocence).


Question: In the legend of Cibola, the ship landed in Florida. Why did they show him the City of Gold in South Dakota? In those days for an entire group of people to travel that far (on foot) would have been deadly.


Chosen answer: You (or the movie) have your legends confused. Cibola was supposed to be somewhere north of New Spain (now Mexico). The Spanish conquistadors explored much of the southwest looking for it. Coronado travelled from central Mexico all the way to the northwest of Kansas and back (without dying!) looking for Cibola and Quivera.


Question: Why does Ben need to find the city of gold to beat the kidnap charge? The President's story of "We got trapped and he saved my life" would work just as well without the discovery.

Chosen answer: I've wondered that myself. It is a rather obvious plot hole, but it appears that the writers thought it added to the story's "suspense" by having Ben eluding the federal authorities while racing to find the treasure.

raywest Premium member

Question: At the end of the film there are a bunch of people in the lost city of gold. If the devices were busted up and didn't work any longer, how did they get the water out? Also, if there's not really a way in any more, how did they all get in?

Chosen answer: You can see the hoses and pumps that were used to pump the water out. Now that the location is known, even though the entrance was blocked, they could gain entrance by drilling/blasting/tunneling/etc.

Phixius Premium member

Question: How, exactly, would one decode a playfair cipher?

Brad Premium member

Chosen answer: Best explained here: