relic recovery

A Shirtless Man and His Dog

  • August 17, 2015

We had a rough week. While my kids suffered through a nasty stomach bug, I suffered through the final days of Comm 101. The good news is, I survived the class--the same class I'd been putting off since I started working towards my Associates Degree in 2008. The topic of my speeches, you ask? Well, metal detecting, of course: So in the midst of completing my final assignments, I fell into the role of Dr. Mom--cuddling on the couch, watching a million-and-one episodes of Sesame Street, and cleaning partially digested...

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  • June 17, 2015

Even before I started metal detecting, I'd always had a weakness for old homes--the crumbling stone facades, the weathered brick, and paint-peeled clapboards. These properties--with their overgrown vegetation, collapsing outbuildings, and crooked shutters--possess some sort of decrepit beauty that I've always found to be both haunting and mesmerizing. I think sometimes we forget that these sad structures were once the pride of a family name, a booming industry, a community, or a righteous cause. Now, they stand in ruin and waste away to the tune of the passing decades... until someone like...

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A Little Lead Man

  • June 4, 2015

A few days after I graduated first grade, my parents uprooted our entire family and moved us out West. I traded clam chowdAH for barbecue, rolling waves for endless plains, and soda for pop. The cultural whiplash took awhile to recover from, but once I realized ya'll was essentially the same as youz-guys--I got along just fine. While living in Kansas, I remember going on lots of fields trips--this was back before schools had to worry about all that liability. Heck, all you needed was a signed permission slip and you could feed tigers at the zoo or take an inflatable raft down some wicked...

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Metal Detecting Basics

  • April 22, 2015

This is not my typical post. This is a compilation of tips and tricks I've learned about metal detecting... with a lot of help from my readers and my detecting family along the way. My goal in writing this post is to hep beginners and perhaps teach others a thing or two as well. - The Right Machine -  The right machine is important. Whether you're just starting out or looking to upgrade, you need a metal detector with the right features. I purchased my first (ACE 250)... and second (AT Pro) metal detector through Robert Wyatt at Quality Metal Detectors. Robert goes above and beyond. I encourage...

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Breaking Ground at the Wright House

  • March 16, 2015

A few weeks ago, I wrote a story about how I obtained permission for a house that was instrumental in leading over a thousand slaves to their freedom--The Wright House. This weekend, I had the opportunity to stand beside that very pile of rubble and contemplate everything that the home had stood for. I must admit, the whole experience was a bit surreal. I think that everyone has a different motive for digging and--as I've mentioned before--my motive is to recover that buried shred of history that can connect me to the past. Before I bought my metal...

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Dump Digging and Whatnot

  • March 3, 2015

Last Spring, my uncle came to me with a question: "Hey, are those old insulators worth anything?" To which I responded to the affirmative. He then proceeded to tell me that in the 1960s, he was responsible for taking down all the radial wave street lamps in nearby Mount Holly Springs, PA. Rather than throw them in the dumpster like most would, my uncle brought them home and piled them in his back woods for target practice. Now, fast forward to 2014. I find myself traipsing through his backyard, hauling these things out in a wheelbarrow and loading them into the back of my Subaru. These mammoth...

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My Motives for Metal Detecting

  • March 2, 2015

Despite what you would gather from reading my blog posts, I have only been metal detecting for a short while. Before that, you could find me scrounging around in old bottle dumps and hunting yard-sales for cheap treasures that struck my fancy. I am a treasure hunter at heart and I suppose that taking up a metal detector was just the next logical step. I look at metal detecting as my way of connecting with the past. I think everyone has a different motive for metal detecting. Some metal detect to keep busy, others to stay active, a handful to get rich, and the rest to discover something that...

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Finding Historical Properties

  • February 18, 2015

A lot of my permissions are discovered just by driving around. I will pick my son up from daycare and we will set off on our epic adventures. I call them adventures, but really we just drive around on unfamiliar roads looking for places that could produce historical relics. It might sounds silly, but we have a lot of fun. This is actually how I got permission for the 1765 mill property. (Pictured to the Right.) My other permissions are found on the internet. If I have a township that I am focusing on, I will Google "TOWN" history. I read up on what Wikipedia has to say, then I will typically...

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Common Sense in Finding Cents

  • February 17, 2015

Since starting in this wonderful hobby, I have become familiar with terms like pocket spill and coin shooting. The terms puzzled me at first, but eventually I caught on. Now, before you read on, I will warn you that I am writing this post from the perspective of newbie and in the interest of a newbie. (Please feel free to chime in on the comments if you have anything to add.) In the first month that I took up the hobby, I was fortunate enough to be invited to detect with someone whose skill level far outmatched mine--Micheal Sheesley. (Well, let's face it... I had only been detecting once...

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Permission Letter Templates

  • February 17, 2015

Wow. I never expected my letter to go over so well. Quite a few folks from various groups expressed an interest in recycling my letter to request permissions of their own. I can do you one better. I have drafted a template that you are welcome to cut and edit as you see fit. I am a strong advocate for asking permission rather than forgiveness in this hobby, so please feel free to reuse and recycle this letter as often or as sparingly as you would like. If you have a property in mind and do not know the owner, I would suggest calling your county with the address and getting the name of the person...

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