Saturday, February 15, 2020

Finding an Unexpected Cache

  A few weeks ago, I met up with my father to spend a few hours detecting. We started out at the local fair grounds, which dates back to the early 1900's. After a few hours, we had a pocket full of clad and a 1937 Buffalo Nickel. We decided to leave and go check out an old house that was torn down in the early 90's.

  The home originally sat between the highway and a canyon. To our disappointment, most of the original dirt and foundation had been washed into the canyon over the years. We weren't expecting to find much and after swinging the detectors for awhile we had found a lot of trash and no coins. We decided to call it quits and while walking back to the vehicle, something lying on top of the dirt had caught my eye.

  After getting a closer look, it appeared several silver coins layed on top of the dirt. Instantly, I had assumed that we had just stumbled onto an old cache of silver. Upon closer inspection, the coins were clad. A 2018 penny, a quarter, and a couple nickels layed right on the surface. We picked them up and ran our coils over the area and instantly knew there were more coins. We began digging, often picking out several coins at a time. With every handful of dirt we ran over our coils, we would find coins. We pondered on several questions as we dug. Why were there newer coins at an early 1900's site, how did they get there, and how many would we find? We dug for around an hour before our detectors finally fell silent.

  After laying out and sorting through all of the coins, we had found a total of 371 coins, 213 pennies, 41 nickels, 72 dimes, 42 quarters, 2 wheat pennies, and 1 rolled penny. Now as much as I'd like to have found that many silver dollars, finding that many coins is a good day of detecting. As for how all those coins got there, the only explanation we could think of was someone had a jar full of coins in their vehicle and had wrecked off the highway, spilling all of the coins onto the ground.

  Finding this random cache of coins is a good lesson for any treasure hunter. Lost treasure is still out there. Sometimes there isn't a map or story with directions or clues. Who knows how much treasure, whether lost or forgotten, is just waiting for someone to stumble upon it?

Get out there and go find it!

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Possible new projects

After several years away from the treasure hunting community I've decided to launch new projects. The passing of a number of my treasure hunting partners within a very short time period took much of the joy out of the hobby for me. This is why I stepped away for the last few years.

My son has taken an interest in metal detecting and treasure hunting so we are considering expanding into YouTube videos. With my decades of experience and his youthful exuberance it should make for interesting viewing.

This will be an excellent opportunity if any equipment manufacturers would like to sponsor us or have us do equipment reviews. With well over a million views here on the blog we will bring a vast audience to all of our media outreach. Feel free to contact me with any questions or suggestions.

Monday, January 13, 2020

A new treasure lead

Finding treasure leads with today's technology is an easy process. Posted above is an example of what just a few minutes searching free newspaper sources can provide. I used a website that provides free access to many old Oklahoma newspapers. Using "buried treasure" as my keyword search hundreds of newspapers with articles about buried treasure appeared. This website highlights the articles making them easy to find.

While the above article provides little information it does provide enough to find the search area. I simply googled Romulus Oklahoma and clicked on the map that appeared. It was easy enough to find opossum creek and the spot where another creek came together. This area is circled in red on the above map.

This is an active lead for a treasure hunter to follow up on. There are online sources to find names of the land owners to get permission before searching the area east of where these two creeks come together.

Good luck and good hunting

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

I'm alive and well

     It's hard to believe three years have gone by since I last posted a story. After the passing of three of my treasure hunting partners I decided to step back from the world of treasure hunting and pursue a few other areas of interest.

     The time away has allowed me to reexamine the way I hunt and start with a fresh perspective on projects I had shelved. I've found that the break has allowed me to see details I had overlooked in the past.

     I have spent a considerable amount of time researching to find out who J Frank Dalton really was and I'm 95% sure I have solved the mystery. Only DNA testing can prove 100% if I'm correct, but through countless hours of genealogical research and searching census records I've been able to get a fairly good idea of his life.

     I plan on posting new stories and information as time permits. As the weather cools you might even find me out in the field searching for those hidden caches of gold and silver. Don't look for me to be on tv much as I've decided that's not my gig.

Good luck and good hunting



Sunday, April 12, 2015

Tommy "TJ" Johnson

2014 was a tough year. With the passing of my partner Ray early in the year and with the loss of TJ last August. TJ was a man of integrity. He never had a bad word to say about anyone.

Last week family and friends said a final farewell as his ashes were scattered across the hills he loved to hike.

I first met him as him as he sat in front of his camper reading Oklahoma Treasures and Treasure Tales with his dog Harley at his side. I knew at that moment we would become friends.

Over the years we hiked many trails and chased numerous treasures. TJ was part mountain goat. For a guy in his 70's he was tough to stay up with. He loved being outdoors and always wanted to see what was over the next hill.

His stories of searching for treasure in decades past were always entertaining. The call of treasure took him to many states and digging for Spanish treasure nearly took his life. It's through him I learned the dangers of pack rats and the hantavirus.

TJ came by treasure hunting naturally. His dad found the Amarillo Starlight. It is the largest diamond found at Crater of Diamonds since it became a state park.

His spirit will travel with me as I continue the hunt. He will be missed but lives on in the memories of those who knew him.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Interpreting Signs and Symbols

I'm often asked if there's a good book for interpreting the meanings of treasure symbols. While there are countless books on the market that claim to show such things most are just recycled from other books. The authors may have never seen the signs used in the field to verify their authenticity. I was once told there's more money to be made writing about treasure than there is hunting for it. I believe this holds true. If someone is trying to sell you a book about treasure signs then the odds are they're not finding treasure themselves.

There isn't a book that I can recommend as the single source for sign reading but there are a few books that will go a long way in helping you learn to read the signs for yourself. I highly recommend The Rocks Begin to Speak by Lavan Martineau. While this book covers how to read Native American pictographs the same process can be used for treasure signs. Especially when dealing with stacked or grouped symbols. Many of the Native symbols have been incorporated by other groups to be used as treasure symbols.

A safe bet would be that 99% of the treasure signs you come across are giving you one of three things. #1 is direction of travel. #2 the topography that you need to look for. #3 the layout of the treasure site. This is fairly universal among all groups. In our area you will often find symbols from the Spanish/Mexican and 19th century outlaws in the same area. What is a good area for one group is often good for others even if separated by a century or more in time.

I have spent countless hours researching and working in the field to understand what the signs and symbols are conveying. Hundreds of people over the years have sent pictures of symbols requesting help interpreting them. The majority of them I've been able to help with. My main effort is to help people to help themselves. You learn far more having to work out what a sign means on your own, with just a little guidance, than you ever will just being given the answer.

There will be a naysayer or two at my abilities to read signs but that is to be expected when you have so many armchair experts and book hustlers. Feel free to contact me for help. Unlike many others I'm not interested in knowing where your site is or charge a fee for help.

Good luck and good hunting!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The feds are lurking in the shadows

As Big Brother grows and encroaches upon our everyday lives we hear more and more about the federal government spying on US citizens. The NSA spying scandal is but one example.

From my personal experience big brother spent three years watching my internet posts on this blog, treasure forums, and facebook.

You can rest assured that they're trolling the internet pretending to be treasure hunters intent on entrapping someone in some sort of sting operation.

This is nothing new as I've read stories from decades ago warning about who to trust when it comes to treasure hunting partners.

Today though, they may start with innocent enough emails asking simple questions. In time these questions become more intrusive or leading.

One example is them pretending to be an arrowhead hunter asking if you've heard of anyone finding artifacts on federal property or know of such sites to find points. To this my reply is it is illegal to search for artifacts on federal property.

They might even show up at a treasure hunter get together pretending to be another treasure hunter hoping to find something incriminating against those in attendance.

It's possible they offer to trade guns for a good hunting spot. Nothing like getting firearms involved for potential future prosecution.

While this might seem a bit conspiratorial all this and much more is happening. That's why I prefer to keep things legal and shy away from anything shady.

So if something seems odd or fishy about someone contacting you, trust your instincts and leave them well enough alone.

Good luck and good hunting!