1 Cent Token and Silver

Back to a site I hadn’t been to in a while, but it often gives up the goods, tho like most, it is thinning as well.  It did give up a pair of dimes, and this odd token, a 1 cent coupon for a food store in Philly. It dates from the 50s or 60s, and rang up like a silver dime (tho I believe it is base metal).

Who goes to the trouble of creating a token for 1 cent?

This is only the second vintage token I’ve ever found (I don’t count Chuck-E-Cheese and modern transit tokens).  The other was the Baltimore one from just the other day.

Farewell Silver

Today was the farewell hunt for my recent private property site, it had given up 8 silvers, a pair of buffs, a crotal bell,  two compacts, and a token, but nothing really old, despite being over 200 years old.

There was still plenty of area to hit, but I had been coming up empty, so I decided to farewell it, at least for a while.  Usually I get a silver on farewell day, but it wasn’t giving it up.  I spent alot of time in the woods, where I had reason to believe that there was activity in the past, and I even discovered the stone ring of an old garden, but all I found was one wheatie.  Whoever had been here before was good.

After no silvers, and about an hour and a half left before having to get to work, I drove by my recent honeyhole which had one unpromising section left, and I noticed that the grass had just been mowed, so I set up shop there, and pulled just one coin in over an hour of hunting, but fortunately it was a 61D rosie.

Any silver is good, especially at the end of a long, frustrating day.

Silver Yesterday, 3-Ringer Today

Yesterday I went back to the site I hit a random silver on 4/17, which I had given up for dead.  A long hunt gave up a pair of silver coins.  I was lucky, as the grass had just been mowed as I arrived, and both coins were on the edge of detectability. One wonders what I could find if I had just one more inch of depth.

Today I was skunked on silver at the same site, but pulled a 3-ringer.  This site is no where near civil war activity, so go figure.

I hate writing skunked entries, so I’m glad I found the 3-ringer to give me something interesting to post.  I did find quite a few wheaties today; it seems the dimes were just out of range (remember, the wheaties are a bit bigger, and will have the halo the dimes won’t, so they are just a little easier).

I’m in a bit of a slump, no mega silver days, no big or spectacular silvers, but you have to just keep soldiering on thru it. The 3-ringer is a cool thing to find and talk about (especially in this area), but there is no substitute for that rush of seeing the shiny in the hole.

Relics Today

Got out to Saturday’s site again today, and did not pull a single silver coin in a long day of hunting. Another very long silver streak (in my home terrain), down the tubes (I don’t track how long they are anymore; I know I’ll never get to 52 again).

I did pull some old relics tho, a couple of compacts, and an old token for a furniture store in Baltimore.  The token is from the 1920s, as near as I can determine.  I’ve never pulled a compact before, and today I pulled two.  Visions of caches of old silver coins contained therein where dashed — one had junk, the other was empty, but appears to have a silver backing to the mirror.

Silver Hunt With My Wife

Got out with my wife today to the recent private property site, which gives it up, but you have to work for it.  First target was what I call a 35-50 silver, deep and iffy, and hard to tell from iron, but turned out to be a modern silver quarter.

My wife had to leave, but I decided to stay on, and I got another dime.  Its always fun to hunt with company; I wish it would happen more often.

Well, had high hopes for this site, but the only real old thing it has given up was a crotal bell.  Its also given up 8 modern silvers and a couple of buffalo nickels.  I’ll give it another hunt or two.

Frustrating Hunt at my Newbie Site

On 2/22, I wrote about a hunt at my newbie site, the idea being go back to your newbie site and see what you can get when you have more skill under your belt, and I got 3 silvers on that day in 5 hours, in a site I figured was pretty thin.

I went to my newbie site, rather than some other recent sites, cause the ground is really rock hard around here, and the silvers at this site are not deep, they are in trash, so the rock hard, dry ground is less of a factor.

I started pounding the area I found the three silvers at last time, and, in 2.5 hours, dug just two coins of any kind (a wheatie and a nickel).  Unbelievable. How could a site be so dead?  I mean, this is a modern site, people are here all the time.

2.5 hours is alot of patience, but I gave up and went to a different section.  I just wanted to dig some clad cause my arm gets sore if I dig nothing for so long.

I started digging clad, then started digging deep clad, which is a good sign, as deep clad often indicates deep silver (cause it ain’t been hunted as hard in the old days).

Well, I didn’t find any deep silver, but I did find a shallow rosie in the trash in this area to keep a long silver streak alive (well, not counting that New England day, which I guess should count).

Well, now I have at least a new small section of this site to hunt someday, but rain is coming, so I may get back to other sites where the stuff is really deep.

Two Silvers Today

Today it was a choice between the site that gave up the random silver yesterday, and the older site which gave up 3 the other day.  Tough choice, but the latter site is very difficult to hunt, and gives it up grudgingly.

Today it gave up a pair of silvers, a 44 merc, and a 41 quarter.

Random Silver

Those who know me know I tend to be rather meticulous, and only go to sites where I think there is a reasonable probability of pulling silver, but I had business in a town with a site that had given up 16 silvers last year (including a walker and a barber quarter), but I had given up on it after a few unsuccessful hunts since.

But, I had to be there, and researched a few other places, none of which panned out, so I went to this site, even tho I only had an hour, and managed to pull a rosie rather quickly, in the rock hard dirt (is it ever gonna rain?).  Mark this site down for another visit.

Three Silvers Today

Back to yesterday’s site, hoping for a big, old fish; instead pulled a 3 spot of modern silver, as well as a buffalo nickel.  I get the feeling this site has been picked over by an expert (with or without permission).

All three silvers were hard — deep and on their side.  The war nickel was 10 inches, and on its side.  There is nothing shallow here, and no clad.  Maybe the site hasn’t been used since the 50s or 60s (I do know that is the last time it was in scheduled use, tho such use, I was hoping, would go back much farther than that), but you would expect to at least find some clad.

Given that the modern silver is just on the edge of detectability, I’m betting, unfortunately, that the older silver (if any) has sunk out of range.

New Promising Site

I’ve been scoping a site that just looks awesome for weeks now, but it is on private property, and I’ve never had the time to make a go of getting permission, with so much else going on.

But with farewell, farewell on my last goto site, I finally got up the nerve to go for the permission, and got a yes.  This is the perfect site for right about now, given that the dirt is starting to get rock hard (it hasn’t rained in months, it seems), and this site is low-lying, with wet ground.

The site dates back to the early 1800s, but a three hour hunt netted just a rosie and a buffalo nickel (not shown), as well as a crotal bell.  That’s certainly constructive, and the good news is that I have permission to hunt it when I please.

As for crotal bells, some people are gaga over them, I’m not one of those people.  I dug almost a foot for the thing.  Yeah, they are old, and cool, but give me silver anytime. Today’s hunt did keep a silver streak alive, tho.

Farewell, Farewell

I don’t think I’ve written about this before on this blog (tho I have on AD), but one of my rituals is a farewell hunt when I think a honeyhole site is played out.  I like to go to a local restaurant, spend the clad I’ve found for lunch (well, of course I use a credit card, but cover it with the clad), have a couple beers, and do a final hunt on the site.  I’ve been bashed for my farewell ritual, but its what I do, cause its fun, and it is sort of like a travel experience, and always leaves me with fonder memories of the honeyhole.

The restaurant meal was lousy, but the site’s final section (other than the section I gave up for dead yesterday), gave up the goods.  First target was a rosie, and it is always special to get silver on the farewell hunt.  But the next target was a dateless SLQ, followed by a walker.  Unbelievable.

But that wasn’t the end of it, I pulled 2 more dimes, and another walker, for my second ever 2 silver half day (both at this site), and my 8th silver half of the year (and it is only April, tho I don’t expect to pull any more this year).  5 of the silver halfs have been pulled from this site (a barber, 3 walkers, and a benjie).

This was a very fine farewell hunt, and marks my 40th silver from this site.

Last Two Hunts

After pulling 11 silvers on Monday, I was obviously anxious to continue milking this honeyhole.  There wasn’t much real estate I hadn’t yet covered, and there were basically 2 sections left to cover.  Over yesterday and today, I covered the section I felt was most likely to give up the goods, but it was not to be, just a 45S merc yesterday, and a 45 quarter today (neither shown).  I didn’t cover this zone completely, but wrote the rest of it off as dead, as it was further and further from previous hot zones and historical features.

Both kept a long local silver streak alive (not counting that day in New England), and any silver is good, but these slow days are the patience required to get the killer days.

11 Silvers Today

Itching to get back to my honeyhole, which is slowly turning into a monster site, I managed to pull 11 silver coins today. This marks my 2nd double of the year, and 12th in my career.  Its weird how sometimes you just hit a hot zone, and can do no wrong.

Roadtrip Silver

Had some business in New England this past weekend, and had some ulterior motives as well, one of which was to visit each site where I found silver during my blowout year last year, and have a local restaurant meal near the site.

Next stop on the tour was a very large park in CT, where I found a couple of mercs and a very old silver thimble last year.  The targets are few and far between at this site, but like many sites, patience is often rewarded, and I dug my first 2 reale Spanish silver, dated 1777.  This is my second oldest silver coin, and it is quite a treat. Yeah its worn, but we’ll take it.

On Sunday, I met up with a couple of folks from the American Detectorist forum at some sites near Ashburnham, MA, but I was skunked.  These sorts of old field sites are generally all or nothing (contrast with my steady bulk silver approach), and I generally end up with nothing.  But, it was great to be invited to these sites, and the company was great. There is always the possibility of an awesome score at these sites.  The Sunday hunt broke another nice silver streak, but I’m not sure if I should count the break or not.

Back to My Shrine

Went back to my favorite site, to the excavated section, which gave up 8 yesterday, but the targets were much thinner today.  Finished off the sections I was unable to complete yesterday, and I dug 3 silver coins over a very long day of hunting.  All were very shallow.

The last was a beautiful barber dime, just one inch deep, which surprisingly, rang up as a 12-44 on the E-Trac.  Its my first barber at this site, after 138 total silvers, and I think a fitting end to the site.  All things must past.  Farewell, Farewell.  (Until they excavate some other section, of course!). (Of course, I’ve already done two farewell hunts here, and it still seems to give it up.  This time, I do think it is really over, but of course I’ll be back someday).

Dropped an Eightspot Today

Had business near the location of my best all time site, a site that, prior to today, had surrendered 127 silvers (previously written about in this story).

I thought the site was pretty much finished off, (save for the stray few that I will eventually round up), but every time I drive by, I check it out (I mean, who wouldn’t; its a shrine for me), and low and behold, they had scraped some dirt off!  I always have my machine handy (chance favors the ready mind), and I was able to get some detecting time in, and was able to pull 8 silver coins.

These coins were all shallow, being in the excavated zone.  None deeper than an inch or two.  How cool is it to get a signal, and look down, and see the rim of a silver quarter sticking out of the dirt?  Unbelieveable.

135 silvers from this site now.  I know where I’ll be tomorrow.

Double Big Silver Story

Note: this is being simultaneously posted on American Detectorist (its one of my “stories”), so if you’ve read it there, its the same here.

Told my wife this morning that I was gonna go out and dig a 200 year old coin, and that is exactly what I did.  Of course, I had some inside information, as a couple of years ago I discovered an unmapped 1700s homesite where I pulled 13 coppers from a 90×90 grid, and while I gridded the area hard at the time, I’ve become a much better detectorist in the past two years, and figured I might have missed one — so I figured I’d give it another go now that I was a bit better with the E-Trac, and sure enough I did miss one.

But, it was a pyrrhic victory of sorts, as 3 hours of gridding netted only one, which, due to the abusive low pH of the Chester County soil, realistically must be scored as a smoothie

Yes, I can see a bust, and yes, it is either a George II or III (the bust is facing right, but I can’t remember which is which).  The cool thing, tho, is that it is actually made of copper (air tests as 12-46 on the E-Trac), so it is a British import, not a contemporary domestic base metal counterfeit, so we take small wins where we get them   Still worth melt value, and just as ugly.

Well, enough whining about low pH and Chester County coppers (I’ve found 51 now, and all 51 have been abused to melt value by the local condition of acidic soil); it was time to move on to what I do best, and that is bulk modern silvers (too bad most of the old silvers around here are in the old parks, which around here are under the purview of the Fairmount Park Commission, which has decreed detecting illegal), at a different site that gave up an ’94S barber half, and has always given up at least one silver per hunt, but takes a bit of patience to work.

And patience was needed, as the first 7 coins where wheaties   I don’t believe in universal constants, but if I did, one of them would be my golden ratio of 2.5 wheats to one silver.  This has never failed me, and when it has been out of whack, it has always come in.  So, I kept going at it  and eventually I got that sort of 2/3 silver rosie. Are you kidding me?

I decided right then and there that it was counting as a full silver, and not only that, I decided that if I found the other part of it (which I extra carefully gridded for), it was gonna count as a full silver as well, ’cause, you know what, silver coins are hard to find, and had I found the small half first, I certainly would have counted it as a silver, wouldn’t you?

But, I didn’t find the small half, and not only that, I didn’t find much else for quite some time (I mean, a really long time, like shoulder sore E-Trac time (as much as I love the E-Trac, aside from the fact that the pinpointing is more or less useless, the thing is not balanced well for long periods without diggable targets — I have two tendinitises directly caused by the thing, but we love it anyway).  But, press on I did, and eventually I got a beautiful 10-47 on the E-Trac, which turned out to be a walker.  This is the second time in recent memory where a silver Q signal turned out to to be a walker, but, as you can see (and this is why I shot the reverse pic), it is ferrous stained, and no doubt ferrous in the hole was affecting the signal.  Just a word to the wise (but of course you would dig it, but who knows what the competitions’ machines were saying on this one?).

The next signal didn’t have that problem, and it was the best dig me I’m silver signal I can remember hearing in quite some time.   It turned out to be my first ever Franklin half, and my 6th silver half dollar of the year.  It also makes a career five pack on big silver (seated half, barber half, walker, franklin, ’64 kennedy), and I am quite excited about that  Alls I need is one of those really hard to get old ones for the six pack, and that is what I’m gonna do someday.

So that’s that, two big silvers in one day in a first for me.  I was ready to call it a day, but, as always, I finished out the rank of the grid, and hit a pair of dimes in the same hole  How sweet is that?  It was, outside of digging one junk target, 4 silver targets in a row (2 halfs then the 2 dimes in the same hole).  But, that doesn’t account for the hour after hour of dead.  Sometimes it just works out that way.  If you know the site is a winner, just press on, even if it feels like a loser for longer than you’d like.

Well, its been quite a long time since I’ve written one of my stories (probably be just as long before the next one).  Hopefully its all good.   Hopefully Dixie Rebel will have the appropriate response.

Two Quarters in the Same Hole

Back to the honeyhole that gave up a barber half earlier in the year, and I pulled two quarters from the same hole.  How sweet is that?  It is so much fun to hear that sweet sound of silver; even more fun to hear it again when rescanning the hole.

These were the only keepers of a long hunt, however.

Four Silvers Today

Back to the weekend only site, working the areas of lower grass, and pulled 4 silver coins.  Its nice to feel somewhat back in the saddle, but this site needs to be tabled ’til more accommodating lawn management policies are enacted by the powers that be.

You know, I’m temped to start a lawn care business.  I mow, I detect.  It wouldn’t even be close to being either profitable or rational (and, as an economist, I can’t suffer either of these), but damn it would be fun!  Imagine having complete control of situation, jacking the blade housing down to the lowest level, then detecting while the competition is losing two inches due to detector-unfriendly lawn management policies.