Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Trip to Utah Territory

Back in the 1850's the US government commission General Johnston to lead an army of about 3000 men to Utah to monitor the Mormons. It is a piece of US history that even I know very little about. It has however been a part of history that I have had the pleasure to search out and find relics. My good friend Jame aka PB on most forums and YouTube has done extensive research on Johnston's army and has aloud me to join him on some of his hunts. This past weekend was one of those opportunities.

I  met James at 6:30am and we were metal detecting by 7:45am. It was cold and windy but we went after it pulling find after find out of the ground. It is amazing to hold a piece of history that is over 160 years old in your hand. The thought that right under feet just a couple inches are rare glimpses of the past. It was so much fun to go out there and find such relics. Here are my finds!

First are the Eagle buttons from the military uniforms. I found a total of 14 eagle buttons. These are by far my favorite thing to find!

 I found 4 general service buttone, 1 Eagle A for artillery unit, and a total of 9 Eagle I's for Infantry unit. The bottom left 4 buttons are made from pewter and are older then the others. They were made in the 1820's 
 Found several bullets from the time. The 3 .69 cal that were all over 12" deep.
 Civil war spencer bullets
 A couple of shoulder scale pieces and some random mystery items

 Plenty of cool old glass
 This was my find of the day! I dug down and found some trash but then I noticed this guys in the hole. It is for sure my oldest find of the trip!

In total we were out there for ten hours. James found even more stuff then me but it was a good time! If you would like to see the live hunt, here is the link Happy Hunting!!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

9/25 Saturday Hunt with Jason Yields Silver and One Token Far From Home

My buddy Jason, a fellow Idahoan came down to Provo to metal detect last Saturday. I had three houses line up for us. The first house was a 1929 home with a small front yard, the second was a 1890 home that had been previously metal detected, and the third was a 1919 home with a good size yard. Here are all three!!! Thanks again to the owners for allowing us to come metal detect!

The 1929 house didn't a ton of finds. I found 3 wheat pennies from 1925, 1927, and 1940 all in the same hole. In the tree strip I found a Utah Tax Token and pretty much just the general clad. Jason had found a couple of wheat pennies as well. Also Jason found a silver CTR ring in a tree strip just down the street prior to getting to the house. After that we focused on the 1890 home and once again it was a few wheat pennies followed by some clad.

The final stop of the day was the 1919 home. After talking with the owner we got started. The first old find was another Utah Tax Token followed by a wheat and then FINALLY a 1946 Silver Rosie. I was on the board and the day was looking promising.

The next signal was a general 12:34 on the machine so I was thinking penny but when I pulled the plug I imediately realized it was too large to be a penny. I cleaned off as best as I could and could make out Missouri. I thought that it could not be a Missouri Tax Token but it sure was! That coin had travel. They were minted in 1935. My grandma Meme who still lives in Missouri told me she remember having to carry them around in order to buy things. The also go my the name Mill. Needless to say I was thrilled.

In total, I found 1 silver rosie, 8 wheat pennies, 3 tax tokens, and $3.15 in clad. Some of the relics included bullets, necklaces and an old shirt cuff. Great day!!!

3 Tax Tokens from Utah and Missouri
 Here are my relic finds for the day!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

1900 Home Pays Out Grand Slam

I know it's been over a month since my last post. I have been traveling for work but I have been able to get out a number of times. Instead of going back, I am going to start with the most recent. Saturday I met Ben at a house he got permission to hunt. The house was built in 1900 and had been metal detected a couple of times. Ben started off killing it with wheat after wheat. I knew quickly the house had not been hit very hard. I went really slow getting every signal. I used two tone ferrous setting since there was alot of iron. Two tone ferrous is a setting used to pick out conductive or non-ferrous metals from the ground. This picture explains it! I was able to find this small penny surrounded by all these iron nails.

I started finding a few nickels and thought to myself that there are going to be some buffalo and V nickels here. Shortly after that Ben found a buffalo followed by a V nickel. Since we usually find the same stuff, I was quietly confident I would find some too. Shortly after that I found a buffalo and then on my next pass, a V nickel. Also had a 6 wheat penny drop which is the most I have ever found in one hole and a 2 tax token drop as well!

I can barely make out 13 on the date making it a 1913-S. I looked it up and it is a type 2 so in good condition it could be worth $229. It probably wouldn't get that grade so I would say it's worth no more then $40.
 When I pulled my V nickel from the ground, Ben couldn't believe it. Ben's V nickel was 1902, mine was 1899.
 6 wheat pennies in one hole! One of the pennies is a steal penny that is all corroded.
 Tax token drop!!! Love these token.

 At the end of the day, I was passing over an area where Ben had pass. I was hoping for one more good find when I got another nickel signal. I immediately thought to myself, could it be another V nickel? It wasn't deep but I pulled back the plug and found a very smooth nickel size object. I knew it was old but when I started cleaning it off, I noticed a shield!!! I couldn't believe it, I had found my first shield nickel. When I got home I discovered it was a 1867!!! My oldest coin to date. You can't get much older then this in Utah, the town I was in had been established in 1850, just 17 years prior. You can see the lines of shield in the picture which made me shout for joy!

Here's a picture of the house back in the day! Thanks again to the nice family that let us search for history
Some of finds freshly pulled from the earth!!!
 Cleaned up looking nice after many years in the dirt!

Here are my relic finds from the day! I found some costume jewelry, bullets, buttons, harmonica reed, and a key to a organ.
 My beautiful grand slam!!! In one day, in one yard I found every type of nickel ever produced!!!
 Backside view

Also special thanks to this guy for helping me dig!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

8/7 1908 Home Produces V nickel

I haven't been out much lately due to some other hobbies and my back. I feel like I'm getting old fast. Last week I only metal detected once but it was at a 1908 house that I got permission to detect. Stewart the homeowner explained some of the history of the house and that the original homeowner was in charge of BYU music department back in the day. The front yard was really small so it was pretty easy to cover everything in a couple of hours. The house is currently being rented and it was a good opportunity for me to talk metal detecting with renters.

Based off of what I was finding, the yard had been re-landscaped back in 50's. I started finding a few wheat pennies from the 40's and mostly just clad. I moved to the other side of the lawn and finally got a decent signal about 6". It turned out to be a 1947 Silver Rosie!!! Following that I started hitting wheat after wheat. Then I got a solid nickel signal and I was really hoping for a Buffalo nickel so when I dug down 7" and found the nickel I was sure it was a buffalo. To my surprise, I saw a big V on the backside and I was so stoked. I waited till I got home to check the date, 1902!!! That is my 2nd V nickel of the year and my 2nd of all time.

First all the clad. Total coin count was 53 coins from the front yard
 Two chucky cheese tokes and a 1987 Korean coin.
 House relics! I love the little hockey goalie.
 The old stuff!!! all wheat pennies were from 40's minus one from 1916. 1947 Rosie and 1902 V nickel!!!
 First time seeing that beautiful V
 The V nickel cleaned up pretty good!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

7/31 Pioneer Day Finds

On Pioneer day, Ben and I got out to a house in Springville that was built in 1900. Ben had sent me a picture of the house and told me to get permission. He thinks because I am in sales it's a walk in the park for me. I did some research and track down the owner and got permission. Ben beat me down to the house and decided to take the side where the weeds weren't such a problem. I think he was kicking himself after the hunt. Check out the finds!!!

The house had 3" weeds everywhere which made it very hard to get close to the ground. I had go real slow and work my way around them.
 Ben took the side that had the grass. He came away with some good finds as well! Ben's Blog
 The day started out slow but picked up quickly. Found 2 1946 Rosie very close to each other.
 The third silver of the day was a 1945 Merc!!!
 Total finds were 3 silvers, 7 wheat pennies and 1 Utah Tax Token
 Other relics include bullets, jewelry and buttons. Also a pin the says "Made from Beaver"
 Large relics included the biggest spoon I have ever found and a ring to tie up your horse.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

7/10 Johnston's Army Relics

One of the biggest things I love about metal detecting is the chance to find history and understand it. I watch a lot of forums and videos on relics being found back east from the civil war era and just marvel at the interesting pieces they find. I have always wanted to find something from the civil war because of how important that time is in our history. I must admit that I don't know a lot about my own history and especailly the history of Utah outside the stories of the pioneers. This last week I got a chance to dig history that effects every person here in Utah and their heritage. If you have pioneer history in Utah then this effects you as well.

Last week I joined by buddy James as we chased after Johnson's army. Back in 1850's Johnson's army was commissioned to come west to monitor the Mormon population. This encounter was also known as the Utah War and predates the civil war. There has been a number of camps found through Utah and it was a privilege to go with James who is extremely knowledgeable about it.  We metal detected for 7 hours in the hot sun. I drank 5 gatorades and 6 half liter bottles of water. It was so amazing to pull 160 year old history from the ground and especially since it was from our US arm forces. Here are the finds!!!

First the buttons! I found 5 eagle buttons worn by US military back in the 1850's. I found a number of pewter buttons as well.
 Here is a close up of the Eagle buttons. You can see on some of them they have a shield which means general service and some have an I which stands for infantry. The coolest button in my opinion is the US great coat button!!! I always wanted something that had US on it!
 The bullets!!! I found a couple of 69 cal bullets, 44 cal, round balls and pistol bullets from the era
 These three are from the late 1800's
 Some of the other relics I found. It was amazing to see this history come back to the surface.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

7/9 Week Of 4th Of July Is The Week Of Wheat Pennies

Over the past week I have been hunting a number of houses from the 40's. Wheat pennies are a good sign that the ground has not been metal detected. When I find a bunch of wheat pennies, I'm going to find some silver coins. Unfortunately that was not the case for this last week. It started with a small home next to a house I used to rent. I only found 4 wheat pennies from the 40's there, no silver. I got word from a my buddy Mike that 5 houses were going to be demolished to make way for a parking lot for a church. Ben and I decided to hit the houses. Between the two of us we have pulled out close to 50 wheat pennies. Last night was the first night either of us came away with silver. I found a 1958 rosie and a 1945 war nickel. Ben found a 1954 rosie. Here are some pics from last weeks hunts.

Anthony and his family lives right next to my buddy Zeke. I went over there last week and found a couple good items. I found 9 wheat pennies and a couple pieces of junk jewelry.

I found 29 wheat pennies, 2 silvers, and 1 buffalo from the 5 houses that are being demolished. Everything was just a couple inches down. Ben found 20+ as well. We were both shocked we didn't find as many silver coins in those yards.
 Last night's hunt was the first for silver. 38 wheat pennies for the week is not bad!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Buffalo, Buffalo, and More Buffalo

Went back to my buddy Zeke's place before he finished moving out. His house produced some good finds last year including a beautiful gold ring. I was digging every iffy signal I could find and I came away with some good stuff. Last year I was always on the look out for buffalo nickels since I hadn't ever found one. I came away with all but 2 buffalo nickels last year. I started detecting around and before I knew it, I had a real iffy signal that was bouncing all over the place. I cut the plug and at the bottom was a beautiful buffalo nickel. I always check the plug and sure enough there was another one. Both from 1916! Made a couple other finds and ended the day with a third buffalo nickel from 1919.

First time finding multiply buffalo nickels in one hole.

 During the hunt I was visited by this little guy. I thought he was one of the coolest cats I have ever seen.

 One of my favorite coins! Found only 2 last year and now have 9 for this year!
 Other side
 Old finds of the short hunt were the 3 buffalo nickels and 1929 wheat penny. Also managed a small coin from Spain.