Spanish Mexican colony silver 1/2 real found in GA!

Mike and I started fairly early (around 8:30am) and headed towards Bartow county GA. I live in Forsyth County GA and Mike lives in Dawson county GA, so Mike came to my house to start the journey. After loading the car and giving my wife and daughter hugs and kisses we were on our way. We’ve both done good in Bartow county and we were hoping for some more success this afternoon.

The 1st stop was met with a firm no. We’ve asked a few times and the owner always made excuses, but he finally just said no way. You win some and you loose some, so we cut our losses and moved on. The 2nd home we stopped at was a little bit scary. When I opened my car door, a very large german shepard dog came immediately up and was barking loudly and showing his massive teeth. I was afraid to put my arm out and close my door! He finally backed away and I quickly closed my car door and looked at Mike and said, “I’m too scared to get out!”. We didn’t think getting hurt was worth the trouble, so we moved on.

Our third stop was a familiar hunting ground for Mike. I was only on the site two times prior, but I found a large axe head and a few civil era round balls on those two previous hunts. Mike had hit the jackpot on previous hunts on this site with dozens of civil war era round balls, a silver dime from the 1950s or 1960s and a Barber silver half dollar among his finds. So we both knew it was a good site and hopefully our luck wouldn’t run out.

Mike started the hunt in the back of the house in the woods. I started in their back yard, but after a few minutes I was getting pretty bite up from mosquitos, so I went looking for Mike. When I found him my mouth dropped open, his face was completely tore up from insects bites! Mike informed me that he had some deet back in the car, so we both returned to the car to apply some bug spray. We both didn’t find anything interesting in the back of the property, so we both headed to the front where all the previous good stuff was found.

Almost immediately while hunting the front, Mike calls me over and says, “I think I found something good”. I walk over and he shows a thin grey disk. It’s very smooth and I don’t see much detail, but Mike keeps insisting it’s a great find. Here’s what it looked like:

The find did look like silver to me, but it was so thin! We both continued on with the hunt and remained on the site another 3.5-4 hours. Unfortunately neither Mike or I found much of anything to write home about the remainder of the hunt. So when we got home, we started to look at his “good” find more closely.

All we could see was a pillar and part of coat of arms on one side and what looked like part of a neck on the reverse. Not much to go on, but eventually mike said he thought it was a 1772-1789 Carlos III 1/2 real minted in Mexico for Spain. However, we needed more evidence, so we took out a small scale and measured the coins weight. It weighed 1.41 grams which correlated great with the 1772-1789 Carlos III 1/2 real weight of 1.42 grams. But we needed one more piece of evidence to be sure, so we took out a pair of calipers and measured the coin’s diameter. I couldn’t find the correct batteries, but I the calipers had a scale on it and coin was clearly 17mm. It was official, Mike had found a 1772-1789 Carlos III 1/2 real in North Georgia! When we figured it out, we were practically jumping up and down!!!!

Small spanish silver coin (front) found in North Georgia (uncleaned)
Small spanish silver coin (back) found in North Georgia (uncleaned)

When Mike left my house, we were both estatic! What a wonderful find, but when Mike got home he decided to clean the coin.

1810 Spanish Mexican 1/2 Real found in Bartow County GA (front and cleaned)
Front and back of 1810 Spanish 1/2 Real minted in Mexico found in Bartow County GA

Our initial analysis turned out to be incorrect and there as another Spanish/Mexican 1/2 real that had both the pillars/crest on the back and a similar front. After cleaning, Mike determined he had actually found a 1810 Spanish silver 1/2 real minted in Mexico. The coin was found around 4-5 inches deep with a Minelab Equinox 800. This was a truly great day to come home after finding a coin with so much history. I wish that coin could talk! There’s no way to know who lost it or how many people had used it but since the coin is so worn, it went through quite a few hands before ending up in a field in North Georgia. Good luck out there and I hope you find treasure too! Don’t give up, treasure is out there ready to be found!

2019 Finds Log

When I started metal detecting in 2019 Tim created a find logs for our best finds. I thought it would be fun to post the logs, so I just removed the location and upped the list. We didn’t do that great in 2019, but I was mostly just going to school yards.

DateDetectoristMachineFind
3/16/2019MikeEquinox 800Wheatie date unknown
3/23/2019Dad6000/di ProWheatie date unknown
3/30/2019TimGTI 2500Ox knob, Model T nut & antique copper bracelet
4/14/2019TimGTI 25001954 Silver dime and 1955 Wheatie
5/21/2019MikeEquinox 800silver ring
5/19/2019TimGTI 25001961 Silver Dime
5/19/2019MikeEquinox 8002 wheat cents, dates unknown
5/25/2019TimGTI 25001945 1 anna coin, two wheaties, 4 leaf clover
5/26/2019TimGTI 25001953 Silver Dime very rough condition
5/31/2019MikeEquinox 800Silver Ring
6/2/2019MikeEquinox 800Silver Ring with Topaz stone
6/2/2019DadEagle II SLMen’s silver ring with missing stone
6/4/2019TimGTI 25001945 Mercury dime & 1946, 1953, 1945 & 1938 Wheaties
7/14/2019MikeEquinox 800Silver ring
8/3/2019MikeEquinox 800Isle of man steam packet company button
11-AugMikeEquinox 8008 Wheet Cents
8/11/2019TimGTI 25003 Wheat Cents
16-AugTimGTI 25001 silver dime
9/2/2019TimGTI 2500Apex logo & buckle
9/5/2019TimGTI 25001957-D wheatie
9/7/2019TimGTI 25001950 wheatie & 1948 silver dime
9/8/2019TimGTI 25001945 wheatie & 1969 matchbox “mercedes coach” car
9/9/2019MikeAce1945 Walking Liberty silver half dollar!
9/9/2019TimGTI 2500silver woman’s ring
9/14/2019TimGTI 2500silver man’s ring
9/21/2819mikeEquinox 8001934 wheatie, silver pendant
9/21/2819TimGTI 2500wheatie no date, civil war era smooth Enfield mini ball
10/4/2019mikeEquinox 8001947 and 1956 wheaties
10/4/2019TimGTI 25001954 wheatie bent, crossed rifles infantry fob, pocket knife and merry Widows tin
10/12/2019mikeEquinox 800three wheaties, WB padlock and pocket knife
10/12/2019TimGTI 25001956 wheatie
20-OctMikeEquinox 800Sterling Silver Ring
11/2/2019MikeEquinox 800silver cross, civil war era bullet fragment
11/2/2019TimGTI 2500two wheaties, men’s silver ring
12/4/2019TimGTI 2500buffalo nickel, toy civil war soldiers
12/28/2019MikeEquinox 800wheatie
12/31/2019DadAT Max1937 mercury dime
12/31/2019TimGTI 2500two wheatie 1950s
12/31/2019DadAT Maxtwo wheaties
12/31/2019TimGTI 2500Three wheatie 1950s
12/31/2019TimGTI 2500Three wheaties 1944, 1956 and unknown dates

BONE 28, 2021 – Day 5

All things must come to an end and today was the last day of BONE 28 natural hunts. Steve from Long Island was kind enough to give Tim and I a ride this morning because our rental car wouldn’t start last night and we had to get it towed. When we got to the fields for sign-in, we met up with Jim. He was very lucky and yesterday, on day 4, found an awesome militia button!

Jim B’s Awesome Militia Button

There were two large fields available to hunt today on day 5. The first area was a grassy knoll whereas the 2nd was an alfalfa field that had huge clumps of of grass that made it very difficult to detect.

Alfalfa Field – BONE 28 Natural Hunt Saturday April 24, 2021.

I started on the grassy knoll, where I found a round ball and a prize token. The prize was a Minelab backpack! I didn’t stay on the grass that long though and ventured off to the alfalfa field. Around half past noon, I found my first good target. It had a 26 target ID on my Equinox 800 showing at a depth of max bars. Tim scanned it with his GTI 2500 but didn’t pick up the signal. I started digging a big hole and scanned again. The ID went up to 30! The sweet sound and high number had us thinking silver and we were right! It is marked sterling with a hallmark of IHD or IMD and appears to be a suspender adjustment loop.

It was a great feeling to find silver and about 5 feet away I was surprised to have another nice little tone. This one was reading as an 11 on the Nox; It was a nice little button that still had the shank fully attached.

Mike’s Equinox 800 finds – BONE 28 Day 5 – April 24, 2021.

I detected until 5pm today with only a short break for lunch but I didn’t dig up anything else worth mentioning. I met a guy named Dean out in the field and he had a spectacular day! He was showing me about 5 or 6 buttons he had dug and not one but two draped large cents – plus a barber dime. The BONE 28 event was a success if you ask me and I had a blast! There are talks of a fall 2021 BONE mini 2 day hunt and I’m seriously contemplating heading back to attend.

One of Dean’s draped bust large cents

BONE 28, 2021 -Days 3 & 4

Wow, BONE is such a cool event. Tim and I haven’t been unearthing excellent targets but we have been meeting great people who have been. Jim from TX was one of the those folks; on Day 3 he dug up a Vermont Copper!

Jim’s Vermont Copper

Tim hasn’t been too lucky at this event. On day 3 Tim’s best find was 1834’s – 1913 Mallory Wheeler padlock. He also found a cool set of old pliers. I was able to dig up an old flat button.

Mallory Wheeler Padlock found by Tim using a Garrett GTI 2500
BONE 28, Day 3 – Mike’s finds using an Equinox 800 include a buckle and flat button

Since the fields weren’t being too fruitful we decided to leave an hour early and go door knocking across the Connecticut river in Vermont. At our first stop we gained permission from a very nice lady at an old house but the owner’s weren’t sure how old exactly. She thought it was 100 years old, though it looked older. About 5 minutes after we started hunting, I was startled by a super nice gentlemen that had rolled up in his motorized wheelchair. He followed me around the huge property vicariously metal detecting through me as we both discovered each target. Tim found quite a bit of clad. I didn’t find any coins but did get a cool bell.

Old bell about 4″ tall found door knocking in Vermont

Since the finds weren’t all that great after about an hour we decided to try our luck at one more spot. While the next location was the site of an old wealthy estate, it had been picked over numerous times before us and we didn’t get any thing great from this stop. That didn’t stop us from having a blast though – I’d love to go back to Vermont to give it another go sometime.

On Day 4 of BONE 28 there were several fields available to hunt. Tim and I began the day at a field off Wentworth Rd. My best finds here were a Tombac button and two pocket knives. After an hour or two at this first field, Tim and I went to another field also off Wentworth Rd, where I found yet another flat button and a newer pocket knife. This flat button, however, had some of the gold gilt still on the back side.

Pocket Knife, pocket knife blade and Tombac Button – BONE 28, Day 4
BONE 28, 2021 – Day 4 Mike’s flat gold gilded flat button

We then ate lunch and tried another new corn field that was available to us. It didn’t seem all that great so we decided to again go door knocking, but this time in NH. We gained permission at an 1840’s mansion but it must have been hunted out because we struck out here. Either way, it was a great 4th day and we can’t wait for day 5!

BONE 28 – day 2

Great 2nd day attending bone 28 in Keene NH! It rained almost all day, but that didn’t stop us from hitting the fields all day.

Not a lot of good finds from Mike and I, but others found some great finds.

Mike’s button found with a Equinox 800
Tim’s finds for day 2 using a Garrett GTI 2500

BONE 28 – 2021, Day 1

For the last 28 years, George Streeter has been sponsoring a metal detecting hunt called BONE, Best of New England or Best of North Eastern. He has a small metal detecting and gold prospecting store near Keene New Hampshire. This year, BONE 28, has a total of 5 natural hunts and one seeded hunt.

Tim and I signed up for the event around October 2020 and we were super excited to get here and start digging. The first location is a farm of roughly 183 acres. Today the weather was nice starting off at 36F but quickly warming into the low 60’s. We rendezvoused at the location about 7:30am for a 8 O’clock start. Unfortunately, we weren’t released for hunting until closer to 9am after a 8:30am raffle.

The farm crop is corn and the field we were in had old stalks which made swinging a pain. The signals were far and few between. After about a 30 or 40 mintues, I think i dug my first target -just trash though. Some where about 1 – 1.5 hours into the hunt I got a 17 tone on my MineLab Equinox 800. OH- coin size, but no, not a coin. It was a nice flat button with a design in the center.

Within another 30 minutes I again was digging up another 17 tone, and it too was a flat button. Shortly after or before I also dug up an old thimble and a neat relic.

We detected until 5pm but unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get any other nice finds. Tim had a lousy day all together and ended up not making the board today. We did ask around, and there were reports of some old coins, some large cents including a pretty early one circa 1808 -1811. We were close to a detectorist Brian who found a really nice button, possibly a revolutionary war button. I wish I had taken a picture, it was really nice. I had a blast and can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Civil War Relics & Old Coins

Last weekend was so great, I had to go back for more! My brother couldn’t make it but I invited my dad to come out with me and we headed west to a town with roots in the 1830’s. We got there just in time too. I didn’t want to leave too early because I don’t like knocking on doors early in the morning. When we arrived the home owner was on her way out, but luckily gave us the go ahead to stay and detect.

It’s a great place to hunt because the area is large, there is no interference, very little trash, and lots of old treasure. It was about40 minutes in before I had my first good target – a smashed MiniĆ© ball. about 30 minutes later I found a musket ball and about 1 minute after that another.

Another 15 minutes or so when by and I hear a faint signal that read 21 on the Equinox but the tone was hampered with what sounded like trash one direction and OK but not that great in the opposite direction. It sounded just like the first two musket balls, so I called my dad over so he could swing over it with his AT Max. He too agreed that it didn’t sound that great but I told him I think it is another musket ball, so I let him dig it and keep it, it was his first musket ball for the day!

We continued on and the next thing I know I’m digging up another musket ball. Shortly later my dad says, hey I got another one too. Moments later I hear, Mike, and I see my dad waving me over. He’s sitting on the ground with a huge smile on his face. He found what appears to be shrapnel from an exploded canon ball! How cool is that?

Then things slowed down for a while, but we continued on and it was worth it. My dad found a 3rd musket ball and I got a 1902 V Nickel. By this time my dad was getting tired so he went back to the car to sit down.

I kept at it though for about another 30 minutes. I was closer to the road and there was more junk in the ground. But then I hear this loud strong 34 or 35 VDI signal sketching from my Minelab Nox head phones. It was reading to be at about the same depth as the other good finds, but I thought to myself, there’s no way its going to be anything good. I was wrong; it was a 1901 Barber half dollar!

I detected for another 15 minutes or so but I knew my dad was waiting in the car for me so I figured I’d save the rest of the field for next time and we packed up for the day.

Garret AT Max finds included 4 Musket Balls & Exploded Cannon Ball Fragment- US Civil War Era
MineLab Equinox 800 finds: 4 Musket balls, 1 MiniƩ ball, 1902 V Nickel and a 1901 Barber Half Dollar

Amazing first hunt of 2021

Wow, what a great day! Mike and I went out metal detecting and the good finds just kept coming!

We started near Mike’s house and I scored a magnificent BPOE badge which stands for benevolent protective order of elks. I also found a wheatie and a 1965 silver half dollar!

Antique BPOE (Benevolent Protective Order of Elks) badge/shield, 1964 Silver half dollar and a wheat penny — found using a Garrett GTI 2500

We headed further north and our first stop was a local church. We had previously obtained permission to detect this site from the grounds keeper but we had missed a small section on the other side of the church so we decided to give it a try. Mike and I found a few clad coins and I scored a 1965 Bahrain 100 fils (roughly 27 cents) coin. What a obscure find! It rang up as a nickel on my GTI 2500. Another example of why it’s important to dig the nickel signals!

By this time, Mike was pretty discouraged because my finds were pretty good and all he had were some clad coins. However, I kept telling him, “you’re going to beat me by the end of the day, I just feel it!”. Sure enough, our next stop Mike scored a 1916 Barber dime in excellent condition! He hit a homerun, what a beautiful coin and a extremely hard to find coin!

However, Mike and I weren’t done yet. After lunch we headed back to the same site where he had found the Barber dime and I found a 1907 V-nickel! It was my first v-nickel in Georgia, I had found them in Michigan, but not down south so I was thrilled. As amazing as Mike’s Barber dime was though, he out did himself and scored a silver 1899 Barber quarter!!!! Mike just hit a grand slam (using the baseball analogy again)! Mike also found a cool buffalo nickel (no date) and four wheaties, but finding two barber coins in the same day was outstanding!

1899 Barber quarter, 1916 barber dime, buffalo nickel (no date) and 4 wheaties found using a Minelab Equinox 800

One more stop and Mike found some more clad and a few more wheaties. No more silver on the last stop, but we were riding the clouds and you can’t win them all. I found a few old pocket knives and couples of bullets shells at the last site. Here are my finds for the fantastic day!

1907 V-nickel, 1964 silver half dollar, 1965 Bahrain 100fils coin, antique BPOE shield and numerous clad and relics found using a Garrett GTI 2500

During the last week of 2020 I found a gold ring and now its the first week of 2021 and I’ve already scored a v-nickel and silver half dollar! Mike’s first week of 2021 and he’s already got two, count them two, Barber coins and his first silver quarter. How many detectorists can say their first silver quarter was a Barber from the 19th century, simply amazing! Welcome to 2021…it looks like it’s going to be a fantastic year!!!

Mike’s find from the amazing day in North GA included a 1899 Barber silver quarter, a 1916 silver barber dime (excellent condition), a buffalo nickel (undated) and numerous “wheat” pennies — All found with a Minelab Equinox 800

Silver & Gold found!

My wife called me around 3:30 and told me that she would be running late and would be home later than usual. I thought to myself, “yes! That will give me a couple of hours to go metal detecting!”. I’ve been itching to head back to the 1906 farm house site. During my last visit I pulled out a couple more pennies from the 1940s and 1950s, so I knew there could be more! It’s getting tougher to find the good stuff, but you can’t give up on a productive site until it’s completely worked out!

Arriving at the farm, I knocked on the door and I was greeted by a nurse. She said the owner was sleeping and asked me who I was. I told her the owner normally gives me permission to go metal detecting in her yard. She said, “just a minute, let me check with her”. The owner was confined to her bed, she had recently taken a fall. I asked if I could speak briefly with her and took off my shoes and went inside to go talk to her. The owner is always very sweet and immediately wished me luck and I was off running!

My first good find of the day was a “war” nickel. I was working in all-metal mode and the target rang up as a nickel, but when I saw it, it just looked strange! I immediately, thought, silver “war” nickel and checked the date — 1945.

I was digging every single target that didn’t fall in the “iron” range, so that included a few larger iron relics and even a couple of nails fooled my detectors discrimination. I continued to work the field and out popped a 1942 “wheatie”. Not a spectacular find, but with the silver “war” nickel and the wheat penny, I was encouraged there might be additional good finds waiting to happen.

I worked the yard from around 4:00pm until dusk which since it’s winter was 5:45. I got another pull-tab signal about 3 feet from the large tree in the front yard and I thought to myself, “another pulltab :(“. I cut the plug and in the bottom of the plug I saw gold! It was a beautiful two tone gold band. My wife thinks it might be a wedding band, but I’m not sure. It’s around a size 5.5 or 6 and fits my pinkie perfectly. It’s a beautiful ring, but unfortunately it’s not marked. I’ll have to take it to a jewelry store or pawn shop to have it tested, but it sure looked shiny and new in the Georgia dirt!

I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but I think the saying still goes, “Dig everything and a site is never worked out!!!”. It’s not often you find both silver and gold when you go metal detecting, but when you do, it sure feels great! Good luck and I hope to see you all in the field getting your own silver and gold!

Metal detecting finds using a Garrett GTI 2500 in all-metal mode — large iron spanner wrench, part of plow blade, 1942 “wheatie”, 1945 silver war nickel and a two-tone gold ring!
Gold ring, 1945 silver “war” nickel, 1942 penny and assorted relics found metal detecting using a Garrett GTI 2500

Awesome Day!

Tim and I were excited for another day of detecting. We rendezvoused at my house at 7am and were at the first field by 8. Tim had yet to visit the latest producing honey hole and he was due to find some silver. The air was brisk this morning and our hands were freezing. But we quickly warmed up when Tim uncovered his first Mercury dime for the day!

Shortly after his lucky find, laying directly on the surface, I found a pretty buffalo nickel. The weather went from mid 30’s to high 50’s very quickly and we found ourselves taking off our jackets as we continued to search the field. We both found some wheat cents and clad before we decided it was late enough in the morning to go knock on doors to get new permissions.

There was a home I had been eyeing about two blocks away from 1890. Unfortunately, we were denied access to the property by the land owner. We went back in the opposite direction where, only a block or so from the field, was a home from 1935. Tim and I were greeted by a kind elderly man, which after some explaining of what metal detecting is exactly, were granted permission to give it a go in his gigantic yard. Thrilled, Tim and I geared up and headed in opposite directions.

Moments later, on the side of the house, I was smiling when I dug a nice wheatie, but then I hear “Oh, Mike!”. I look over my shoulder and in the front yard Tim’s first target was a 1934 Washington quarter. We knew we were in for treat. It was very exciting, target after target I was finding old wheat cents. There must have been 7 or 8 when, BAM, I score my first silver for the day, a shinny Merc only inches deep.

An hour or two later, Tim and I find ourselves both searching the back yard. I had skimmed through it earlier, before I jealously entered Tim’s front yard turf after hearing he had found his 3rd piece of silver, a 2nd Mercury dime. As we swung in the back, Tim asked if I’m ready to get some lunch, to which I replied with his favorite line to me, “15 more minutes”. About 5 minutes from then, Tim glees with excitement, “Mike, I got another one”. It was a 1946 Roosevelt. That 15 minutes became about 45 after I then dug up my 2nd mercury dime for the day.

Tim and I thanked the old man and asked if we could come knocking on his door again. He said that would be fine, but was befuddled as to why after we showed him our great finds. Tim and I filled up on some great lunch before heading to the next location. It was the neighbors house. We were able to get permission from the neighbor before we left for lunch when he had spotted us detecting while he went to get his mail and sparked up a conversation when he curiously asked us what we were doing.

His house was new, built in 1978 I believe. But he told us that before it was built, there were a couple older homes on the lot that were tore down. He further explained that on his other neighbors yard, there used to be a mortuary. He said that he was good friends with that neighbor, who was currently out of town, but that it would be OK for us to head in that lot too as he knew he wouldn’t’ mind.

Tim and I were lethargic from lunch, but still excited to hit this lot becuase we had done so well at the house next door. Around 40 minutes into the hunt, I got a nice 32 signal on my Equinox 800. I dug up the barrel of an old cap gun. But wait, a cap gun usually doesn’t ring up in the 30’s. I check the hole and sure enough, that nice 32 signal still toned away. I continued to dig and found a beautiful sterling silver winged Saint Christopher ‘be my guide” emblem.

Getting tired, I headed towards Tim to see if he had found anything. He did! It was a buffalo nickel. We then headed to the mortuary lot, where we didn’t last but another 20 minutes before calling it a day. We knocked at the door and told the owner our thanks.

Tim’s Garret GTI 2500 finds of the day included a 1934 Washington quarter, 1936 & 1944 Mercury Dimes, 1946 Silver Roosevelt dime, an undated buffalo nickel, and 10 wheat cents.
Mike’s Equinox 800 finds include a 1942 Mercury dime and 1941 Mercury dime, St Christopher “Be My Guide” Stick Pin for car visor circa 1940, buffalo nickel and 15 wheat cents.