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Thread: (TL;DR) Amazing weekend with great finds and great company!

  1. #1
    Senior Member Isaac's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Herndon Virginia

    (TL;DR) Amazing weekend with great finds and great company!

    My friend Luke (pacivilwarluke) and his neighbor and childhood friend Mark came down this weekend to do some metal detecting! Luke comes down quite a bit, but this was Mark's first time tagging along, and we were all really excited. It was a long month for me, so it helped to get my mind off of some things.

    They came down Friday night and we were off detecting Saturday morning. I had the first site planned out for a while, it was in the perfect spot to find Civil War relics. I was so hopeful that we could at least get a few bullets and a couple buttons here, since it was in the middle of everything. Unfortunately for us, there was next to nothing there, I think we were beaten out many years ago by previous relic hunters.

    We ended up promptly heading to our next site which was across the street from a known Civil War hospital site. As expected, this was hunted pretty well too. We were about to leave after 30 minutes when Mark calls us and shows us a dropped Williams Regulation bullet he found atop a slight knoll near the road. This was also his first Civil War bullet! We quickly slowed down and started hitting deep stuff other guys missed. Not much was found, but it was enough to keep us going for about an hour. Luke got three musket balls, his first Williams Cleaner and a Williams cleaner base, I got a pulled and rammed Williams Cleaner and a poncho grommet, and Mark got a brass tip from a bayonet scabbard tip.

    After that, we got lunch and headed to the next site which was where I had the triple large cent day last month, I was saving it for them because I knew there was more there. All I can say about this site is it was very active in the colonial days. We park and almost immediately after Luke turns his detector, he runs over a complete OPEN WORK knee buckle frame, probably ca.1750. He was so excited, since it was his first one, and I was too, because I just knew this was going to continue to be extremely productive. I got an early brass horse tack buckle and then decided it would be a good idea to knock the next lot over, since I knew there was a 1750s homesite there. They demolished it in the 1970s and there's a house built about 10 years ago further back from where the 1750s house was. The owner was very hesitant to let me on the property, but I coaxed him into letting us try the bottom half of his property, which, luckily for us, was where I knew the most relics would probably be.

    We get into the lot and it started off quite slow. About 10 minutes in, I got a very small cuff button at less than an inch deep. I told them to help me clear this lot out and we started finding more stuff. I found a nice small late-colonial "Mickey mouse" lock. As it started to fizzle out, Luke began to chase the iron signals. He got on an iron stirrup (his first stirrup) and a piece of an early iron fireplace backing.

    Mark decided to move on across the modern driveway leading to the new house to a sliver of ground between that driveway and the fence of the next door property. He yells to us "I think I've got a copper!" I confirmed it and congratulated him. It was a very toasted, dateless Matron Head large cent, but that doesn't matter. It was his first large copper! 2 minutes later, he yells again, "I got a (expletive) Seated!" At this point I'm thinking, "are you (expletive) kidding me?!" Luke and I run over to see it for ourselves and sure enough, it was a gorgeous 1837 Seated dime. That's not all though, Luke was in the midst of digging a hole when Mark yelled "Seated". In that hole was an early one-piece convex Artillery button from the 1820s in beautiful condition! Another bucket lister for Luke!

    Things started to slow down after that, I began hitting near where Mark got the Seated dime and notice the incredible amount of bricks that are in the holes we are digging over here. I came to the conclusion there was a structure here, and when they moved the driveway over, they plowed up the foundation and scattered it around this area. There was also deep aluminum cans amidst the goodies. Luke strolls on over and, of course, instantly pulls up another coin, another toasted and date-less Matron Head large cent. At this point I was itching to find a coin of my own. It didn't last too long, however, because I pulled out an 1829 Matron Head large cent in pretty nice shape about 5 minutes later. After that, no more period coins surfaced, but I picked up a 1962 rosie, a spill consisting of a 1936 buffalo, a 1943 war nickel and a 1947 nickel, a silver ring from the 20th century and a beautiful 1840s patriotic suspender clip. Just before we left, I obtained permission across the street where my previous research noted a couple other promising areas for the next morning.

    Overall, Luke and Mark kicked my butt on Saturday. But, luckily for me, Sunday made up for it! It was so much fun for all of us and we were so excited for the next morning.

    Sunday morning we woke up a little later, still fairly exhausted from yesterday, but very hopeful. We drove to the new site I obtained permission for the day before and I immediately got my first target, a fired .69 cal. Minniť Ball, not what I was expecting but certainly welcome. The next few targets were pieces of surface trash, which makes sense considering this is also a modern house. I got another deep(er) signal, this time reading like a wheat penny. I got to the signal and saw a green disk a bit larger than a wheat penny from about 5" or so. When I wiped it off and saw "LIARD", I already knew I had a 1650s French Liard in my hands. The obverse was completely slick, and the reverse was almost slick, but luckily for me, the "B" mint mark in between the three fleur-de-lis told me it dates between 1655-1658, making this my oldest coin by about 40 years. Luke was next to me when making this find, and I think he was more excited than I was!

    I walk three or so steps forward and get another deep(er) signal, this one reading like total crap. On the MXT all pro, it was a really crummy +0/+2/+4 at about 3" deep. Despite it being a repulsive VDI, it was not on the surface, so I went for it. Luke was right next to me and when we saw it entangled in thin plant roots, we both thought it was just another pull tab for a split second before realizing IT WAS NOT. I wiped the band and it was clearly thin, OLD gold. I wiped the inside of the band to see if there was any markings or inscriptions, and I found the initials A.F. and A.V.M. on the inside in typical 18th century font. It's also very "buttery" colored so it's probably made up of a high karat gold. This leads me to believe this is in fact an 18th century gold wedding band. I ran to the car and put these two finds in, while trying to contain my excitement. I've been wanting colonial gold jewelry for a long time, it was near the top of my bucket list, and I finally found one!

    Luke and I started swinging again and we pulled out buttons, fancy shoe buckle pieces, and other relics. I got a nice musket thumb plate -
    my first one of those - it was a few yards away from the gold ring. Luke got a well-circulated 1785 Connecticut copper in this area as well, an uncommon find for Virginia. It seems as across the street had mostly early 1800s stuff, where as this site has mostly mid-late 1700s stuff. Mark was in the back of the property, keeping to himself, until he walked back to the front where we were, with a find in his hand. Luke and I just began to salivate as he held a late 1700s watch winder in front of our faces. With a little bit of research we figured the text to be German, and it translated to "The Three Omens" with a depiction of 3 children around a fountain(?). This piece may be unique, and we were certainly envious of it.

    When the front area started to dry up, we headed to the back where Mark found the watch winder. We immediately started getting more targets, mostly from the 18th century. Buttons, buckle pieces, and furniture pieces started flying out of the ground. Mark got a nice 1803 Draped Bust large cent back here, and Luke got a small piece colonial silver with a four-petaled flower on it, of which we don't know the exact origin. I mopped up the buttons, finding about a dozen back here. As I was swinging on my way back to the front where Mark and Luke were wandering, I got a nice clean +81/+83 signal about 3" deep and found myself a beautiful 1771 King George III half penny.

    At this point we only had about an hour of swinging time left, and I wanted to hit the area Luke found his knee buckle one last time. I got a scratchy large high tone at about 6" expecting a can, since I found many in this area. It turned out to be my first sterling silver match safe! I was pretty close to the 1750s house site which was torn down, and I attributed it to the families initials who lived there! I'm guessing it dates to the late 1800s. However, it was missing the top, and I was hopeful that they would be nearby. In the next 15 minutes, I found the other pieces about 6' away. That was amazing in itself! Luke got a beautiful colonial bit boss with gilding here also! After that, we had to leave, but not without a pouch full of treasures for all three of us.

    It was an amazing experience to be able to hunt a productive site with good friends! Hunting it by myself wouldn't be nearly as fun and I am glad they were able to come down here and find stuff! It's truly a blessing to be able to do this and to have friends who share the same passions as myself! Thanks for reading everyone, and happy hunting!

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by del; 01-31-2017 at 05:18 PM.
    I <3 colonial relics!

  2. #2
    Administrator del's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Wow , you guys had an insane hunt !!That old dainty gold band is awesome Isaac and the fact it has markings makes it only more special and personal of an item ! I hope you can figure out the initials and come back and tell us who it belonged to or also who made it . Great stuff !
    XP Deus Ws5 , DFX ,TDI sl -

    Click here to view my finds album

  3. #3
    Global Moderator aloldstuff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    western mass
    Great post, fantastic finds. As much as the relics get me excited, that 1837 no star seated dime....WOW. Your last picture could be made into a postcard, absolute eye appeal. I would write more about this hunt but I have to go and wipe the drool off of my mouth

    V3i- Prism IV- Pro Pointer
    2020 GOAL: Any Flowing Hair coin

    TOTAL 100 YEAR OLD COINS - -280
    Silver: 11

    Oldest U.S. Copper - 1795 Liberty Cap
    Oldest U.S. Silver - 1829 Capped Bust Dime extra large 10C
    Click here to view my album

  4. #4
    Elite Member Digger_O'Dell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    near Milwaukee Wi.
    All I can say is...HOLY COW! That's an amazing hunt! That gold band looks almost identical to one I found late last year, but yours has nicer color (plus initials of course!). Those coppers are awesome, and the seated is amazing! The watch winder is a real keeper for sure. But in my opinion the gem of the weekend is that match safe, it's just an incredible find in my book! I would suggest looking into getting it repaired and restored , it's an amazing piece of history!
    If you want info of who to get a quote from for silver restoration work, PM me and I'll get you the info for probably the best conservation guy in the country.
    Minelab: CTX 3030, GPX 4800, X-Terra 705. Whites TDI SL.

    2017 -Silver 28 Bling 18 Gold 2
    2018 Silver 8 Bling 1 Gold 1
    2019 Silver 7 Silver bling 2
    2020/21 Nothing worth mentioning

    Best finds: 28 silver dime spill, 1800s Dutch customs seal.
    Oldest/best coin: 1837 Upper Canada large cent
    Oldest find: 1800 Sailors Luck token
    You Tube: Rediscovering America

  5. #5
    Veteran Member Bucknut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    SE Michigan
    Dude what an amazing bunch of finds! I LOVE that 1837 dime!
    Detectors I use: Minelab Equinox 800 x2
    2021 Season Totals:
    Clad: $72.33
    Indians: 33
    Wheaties: 203
    Silver: 69
    Silver jewelry: 8
    Gold jewelry: 3
    Favorite 2021 find: Indian Trade ring spill

  6. #6
    Lol, you got another one of these posts with many pics and a lot of words.. worthy of me. Grats on the ring, Liard, LC, and dime. The rest is just icing.
    Future goals: Capped bust coin, Flowing hair LC, Classic head LC, VT copper, MA copper, Pistareen, Two-cent pc, SLQ, GW inaugural button, Excelsior button, Civil war token, and a gold ring.

  7. #7
    WOW! That is an amazing group of finds. Congrats!
    Oldest coin: 1199-1216 King John hammered (x3) / Oldest US coin: 1786-1788 NJ Copper (x4)
    Best relics: Medieval lead seal matrix (1200s) / 1789 George Washington Inaugural Button (x2)
    Personal website:

  8. #8
    Elite Member Digger Don's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Northern Illinois
    I would love to comment on each find, because they are all cool. But I don't have enough time. LOL.
    So on a great hunt and ALL the cool finds.

    Great Job Isaac !!
    Oldest Coin: 1699 William III Halfpenny
    Life Time 873

    21 Don & Al combined
    Silver 50
    Indian 24, Large cent 2, Two cent 1, Trime 1, Rosie 11, Merc 18, Barber Dime 5, seated dime 1, Buff 5, ,War nik 1, V nik 4,Shield nik 1,Wash Qtr 4, Barber Qtr 3,Kennedy 1, Walker 1, Franklin 1,Barber half 2, com. half 1, Slvr Ring 4
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