When my friend told me he got a couple metal detecting permissions in an historic town in New York state, I was excited at the possibilities. The excitement grew when he informed me of the two properties: one built in the mid-1800s and was up the hill from the Hudson River, and the other built around 1790 and overlooked the Hudson. Game on!
My two friends and I started our day at the mid-1800s house. Set beautifully on a hill leading down to the Hudson River, it offered about an acre of land for us to search. The ground was saturated with metal, old and new; ferrous and non-ferrous. My Deus seemed to handle it with no problem, calling out to me good tones worth investigating. After a few pieces of scrap copper, I got a solid, repeatable high tone. Digging through the ground was challenging as it was chock full of rocks; and of course, when on a private lawn, I aim to be as precise as possible with my plugs. I retrieved what I thought was solid silver fork, since it had such a nice luster to it. However, it turned out to be just plated. But I was on the board with a decent find.
The plated theme continued to the next target, and I pulled out a gold-plated ring. It’s pretty corroded but at one point in history was probably quite nice.
The direction I was swinging led me to a very junky, but productive little area. By little, I mean about 15 square feet. While this may sound miniscule, I probably spent an hour retrieving solid signals amongst the irony chatter. The first good find in this area was a Fatty Indian Head penny. My Deus gave a perfect signal for it even though it was nestled next to a rusty nail, which came out of the same hole.
I also got on the board with some silver in the form of a 1945 Mercury dime which is in great shape.
The finds continued to come. I found an old spoon, a flat button, a pocket knife and about a dozen memorial pennies. The memorial pennies were daunting, but I persevered. I’m glad I did because in this junky area I found a beautiful dandy button with a GILT back mark. After the dandy, button I found a smaller flat button with a lot of the gilt left on it. I’m always happy when the gilt survives.
Sometimes we find things that we simply have no clue as to what they are. Facebook groups and forums are often very helpful. This item, however, I’m stuck. It looks to me as if it might be part of a canteen or other small vessel. If any readers have thoughts, I’d love to hear them in the comments below!
Perhaps my most intriguing find from this property was a very old, hand-forged spike, which was broken just above the tip. While I can’t say with one-hundred-percent certainty, there’s a chance it was used on a ship and then re purposed for a land-based structure. Being so close to the Hudson River, and the history that has sailed up and down its shorelines, imagining where it came from keeps the treasure hunter spirit alive in me.
We packed up not too long after I found the spike, and headed over to the 1790s house. The three of us in no way scoured this property, so I’m hoping to have the opportunity to return to see what else I can find. As for the 1790 house – that will be a story for another time!
If you’d like to watch the video from this outing, check out my video!