November 25, 2010

Larry Bateham
Larry Bateham, a.k.a Packrat....

I hope to add more of my articles to the website, courtesy of Western & Eastern Treasures. Today I added another bio article about Larry Bateham, an old friend from the great Northwest. If you don't know the name Larry Bateham, try the name "Packrat".... It will all register with you, at least if you have been detecting any period of time. Larry is a legend in his own time, and I hope you enjoy learning about him. The article can be found under the Articles link or more quickly by clicking here..


New update for the Malamute Saloon, courtesy of John Howland, from the Homeland. Please remember I take no responsibility for his submissions, rants, jokes, rudeness, lack of culture, tasteless insults, foul words, or theories. He is insensible, coarse, gross, raffish, uncouth and lowbred. Having said all this, I am proud to call him my friend, and look forward to the next time we share BS and beer in a pub! Read at your own peril.....

Big Bopper
Mr. Rude & Crude Himself"....

Go to the Malamute Saloon for his latest......


Pork Chops w/Barley Mushroom Casserole

Added another recipe if any of you are interested....Barley Mushroom Casserole with Pork Chops. Found it on the Food Network webste, and it's a great cold weather meal. Hope it sounds good enough to prepare....


"I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving, with all the trimmings. Take the time to spend it with loved ones, and remember they are the real treasures in your life...."


November 21, 2010

Posted a photo of John Howlandís wife Margaret with Nigel Ingram last time around, and decided to tell you a little more about Nigel, and his cohorts in the UK.

I met Nigel about twenty two years ago when I was Director of Marketing for Garrett, and we were looking for a new distributor in the UK. Bob Podhrasky, the engineering director for Garrett at the time, and I visited and interviewed quite a few interested parties there, but when we visited Regton, Ltd., Nigel's company, we knew we had our new rep.

Regton is located in an industrial area of Birmingham, and offers the treasure hunter anything and everything related to the impressive sales floor loaded with treasure hunting equipment, books and accessories. Equally impressive is the sales staff, all of whom know each and every product line they carry, are detectorists in their own right, and as a result know what the hell they are talking about....

Later during that trip, we met up again with Nigel and his Dad Derek, at the Newbury Rally, and we had pretty much decided he was our man. But the real clincher was when, while chatting with them in their caravan, they opened a chest of ice, and offered us some, only if we kept the secret to ourselves. Anything cold at the Rally was hard to find, not that we passed on the warm pints......

Over the years Regton, Ltd., has grown in size and without a doubt is the go-to place in the UK for treasure hunting supplies, and I am proud to say Nigel and I are still close friends.

A little background on the company offered up by Nigel.....

"Dad (Derek) started the business in the late 60's, closed mid 70's, the opened again, with a gap of a couple of years. I personally started working at Regton evenings and weekends, as I was holding down a full time job as a technician in an industrial research lab. I also gave talks to clubs about the UK, and attended most of the rallies, where I would have a trade stand."

"Two years later I was in a position where I could work full time for Regton, and this is when the company really started to take off. As with most new ventures, money was very tight, so I looked around at what our hobby and industry needed most. Coil covers and professional digging tools were lacking and we chose those two to make our mark."

"Sourcing a vacuum forming machine, mig welders, spray equipment, various jigs and cutting equipment became a slow and expensive process, and once they were located we had to teach ourselves the art of vacuum forming and tool making. Amazingly we became very proficient!"

"By the late 80's we were a company four strong, and had taken on distribution for Garrett Electronics, whilst also stocking all other major brands. By the 90's were 8 strong and distributors for two major brands, and now 30 years later we boast a staff of thirteen, and distribute 4 major brands, while selling most others as well."

The Regton Showroom Large Selection of Treasure Hunting Books
The Regton Showroom
An Impressive Assortment of Treasure Books
Regton, in Birmingham Just a few of the Recovery Tools available at Regton
Regton's Location in Birmingham
Just some of the Regton manufactured recovery tools

Regton Ltd. Team
The Very Knowledgeable Regton Team

Ask any treasure hunter in the UK who they deal with, and who they trust. Their answer is always Regton, and many simply say Nigel. A few years ago Fay and I were visiting Nigel and his wife Jackie, and while walking in a park near Birmingham, Nigel came upon a detectorist. He was having trouble with a detector (not purchased from Regton). Nigel spent easily a half hour going over the machine with the chap (suddenly feeling a little British), and when we left he was not only a happy hunter, but I suspect a new Regton customer.

Nigel and his wife Jackie
Nigel and his lovely wife Jackie....

Am I over promoting Nigel? Probably, but I feel that strongly about this guy, and about his company. If you are ever in the UK, and you need expert advice, be sure to contact the folks at Regton, Ltd.. You will be happy you did. And if Nigel happens to be there, remind him he owes me twenty bucks.

To learn more check out their website, as well as these videos....

Regton also offers additional instructional videos with John Lynn (Norfolk Wolf) via YouTube....


While chatting on the phone with my old friend Dick Tichian, I learned that another old friend, Eddie Olding passed away last month, and was sorry to hear it about it after the fact. It's been quite a few years since I last saw Ed, but I will always remember him as a guy with a heart of gold, a great sense of humor, and most important, someone that would do anything you asked of him. Rest in peace will be missed.

Ed Olding, center
The late Ed Olding (center) with Jimmy Sierra and Alan Holcombe, circa 1989


I try to stay on top of the numismatic area, but find it getting more difficult. Seems the Mint is trying hard to make things interesting, but in my book they are not even close. Want people to care about money, coins in particular? Reissue the old patterns. Walking Liberty Halves, Standing Liberty Quarters, Mercury Dimes, Buffalo Nickels, and yes, even Indian Head cents. Forget the "special" releases, and the state coins, just give us a coin that is artistically alluring, and one that has class.

Walking Liberty Half and Buffalo Nickel
The Walking Liberty Half and the Buffalo Nickel, two of my favorites


November 17, 2010

Received a few responses concerning my desire for a easy to use, lightweight detector. Seems I am not the only one who feels this way, and no, the responders were not old farts.....


Just received another "tell it like it is" diatribe from my Bubba in the UK, John Howland, and you can find it in the Malamute Saloon. He's also the proud owner of a new sandscoop, and sent photos to brag a little.... Only consolation is that I am not there to hear his BS verbally.


Dee Sperling, is a good friend, as well as webmaster for two clubs in the great Northwest. She just sent me the following in hopes that it will inspire you and your club to create a website. Best of all she has offered to answer any questions you may have. Thanks Dee, as usual.....

Hi, my name is Dee Sperling and I'm the webmaster for the Hood Canal Detectorists Club, and The Olympic Peninsula Treasure Hunters. Dick asked me to write an article to show how any Metal Detecting Club can have a web presence in just a few short hours, and hope the following helps in this regards. While I started creating websites many years ago using HTML, today I use the free - easy to use - Google sites services so that I still have time for work and play. My husband and I are new to metal detecting - only 3 years - but it has become an important part of our lives.


Here are a few basic principles......
  • Keep it simple. Start with only a few pages that tell the basic story of your club.

  • Lay it out on paper first. Have a good idea of where you want to put everything before you start.

  • Keep your navigation (links to your pages) consistent. Top, left, right or bottom all work. Put all links in the same place on every page.

  • Once you start, create the pages in the order your want to display them. While the instructions say you can move them around, in reality it doesn't always come out the way you expect.

  • Decide on the kind of presence you need. A small club should be able to tell new, prospective members enough about themselves with just a "free" website like "Google sites". The advantage is that the program is WYSIWYG - what you see is what you get. You change your fonts, color, alignment etc just as if you were typing a letter. All files are saved on the internet so they can be edited or updated from anywhere. Each revision is saved so if you don't like a change you made you can go back to an earlier version without having to rewrite the whole thing.

If you think you want a ".com" address, consider all the factors: a) getting a domain name; b) finding an ISP, with a good support staff to help you upload your pages; c) finding an easy to use program to create your site; d) all your website files will be stored on a member's computer so they will need to be backed up regularly. You will need to be sure you have a good policy in place to keep control of your domain name, site and files in case someone moves etc. There will be a monthly cost of $30-60 a month to consider as well.

If you choose Google Sites, the first thing you need to do is create a club address. There's a limit of 30 letters so try to make it as descriptive of your club name as possible. For Example: Club name of Northwest Treasure Hunters Club could be shortened to NW Treasure Hunters Club, but don't just use NWTHC. However, when youíre creating a password use your acronym as part of it to make it easy to remember and then be sure to file it with your club secretary if your webmaster needs to change later on.

Do your research! Check out other club sites. Think about what you like and what you don't.....

Watch the videos; take the hands on tutorials; check out the sample sites. Remember while there are lots of fancy features available, make sure the person who volunteers to create and upkeep your site has the time to do it all.

Finally print out the Getting Started Guide:

Answer all the questions before starting to put it together.

If you have other questions, please email me at, and I will try to answer them, and then have Dick post the answers as an addendum to this article so everyone can benefit.....

Dee and Rick Sperling James Hyatt
Dee and Rick Sperling
James Hyatt

Lastly James Hyatt is one amazing detectorist, and his effort puts all of us to shame. Read about this find here, and then tell me whether or not you are throwing your detector away, or heading across the pond.


November 13, 2010

When I was out detecting the other day I realized I don't have the stamina I used to have, and that maybe I am falling by the wayside. I know getting older slows one down, but I was also feeling somewhat out classed by the detector in my hands. I was using the V3, a detector I like a great deal, but because I wasn't finding things in good order I begin to push pads, pull triggers, increase and decrease settings and change coils. The end result was one silver quarter and few wheat cents. Not a good day compared to years ago, but also not a bad day, given the heavily hunted area I was searching and today's competition.

I tend to remember the way it was back when, and how all I needed to do was ground balance, and move out. Go slow, listen for the whispers and dig! That procedure worked for quite a few years, and then I (and many others) started watching screens, visual ID's, and were under the spell of "if that's what it says, that's what it must be"....

Computerized detectors are most certainly the way it will be from here on out, and as they continue to evolve, there will be even more things to consider, turn, adjust and tweak. Today we can set the audio tone, the volume, the sensitivity, the SAT, the notch, the scan speed, and we can choose among multiple frequencies, pre-set programs or we can create our own. We can pinpoint visually, and we can determine our targets based on numbers, photo's and graphs. The choices and options are endless, and one can spend days experimenting with them.

Now I just want to have fun, and turn a couple of knobs (knobs...remember those things?). A sign of getting old I know, but I would love to go back to the days when it seemed so simple. Give me a lightweight, turn on and go machine that offers an inch or two more depth than the competition, and I will be happy. I am not opposed to innovation, and I love computers, but I firmly believe that a lightweight, simplified, deepseeking metal detector would be a big seller. When I worked for Garrett Electronics back in 1988 we came out with the Grand Master, the company's first computerized detector, and when I talked to Fred Brust (a Garrett Distributor at the time) I will never forget his comments. He said, "Dick, forget all that stuff. Just give me a detector that will go an inch deeper than the rest, and I will sell the hell out of it!"

Don't get me wrong. I love my V3 and my MXT, and will continue to use both in various settings, but after all is said and done I still pretty much opt for the coin/jewelry program. I turn em on, and get movin....

Good Ole Days Eleanor Hube
The good ole days of lots of silver and no gray
Eleanor Hube

Added another bio article from a couple of years ago, and hope you enjoy reading about Eleanor Hube, one of the neatest gals I've met over the years. No doubt in my mind that she would outhunt you and me, time after time, after time. Also for the record, I listed Eleanors website at the end of the article, but a few of the links do not work. Her daughter Cindy handles the site, and she is currently making changes. You can find Eleanor's story under the articles link, or you can click here .


Finally decided to add a visitor map at the top of this page to get an idea of where you are all from..... good hunting!!


November 9, 2010

With the rain last week, and the cooler temps I ventured out couple days ago for a little R&R. Went back to an area I had hunted when I first moved here twenty two years ago. It's only about two miles from my home, in the center of town, and has certainly been hunted many times. In any case I spent about an hour and a half, found a few wheat cents, and as I was heading back to my car I decided to check one last, very pronounced signal. It was a 1943D quarter, no more than two inches deep. Felt good to get out, and will be going back to this site to see what else might have eluded me.

Results of my effort
At least one silver....

Added another recipe today, and you guessed it. It's a pasta recipe (Tortellini with Proscuitto and Peas). Extremely easy to make and extremely good.... If any of you know of or have a Pasta diet let me know. Would be greatly indebted to you.

To see this recipe click on the Poor Gourmand link, scroll all the way down or click here.


Another club newsletter I look forward to? The South Jersey Metal Detectors Club. Check out their newsletter here...


Came across this article , and find it amazing that with all of it's economic woes, this country is out scouting the seas, just to get ahead of the treasure hunter. God forbid someone with the money, time and expertise should beat them to the punch...

Lastly, another neat find in the UK. Story here!


November 5, 2010

Not a lot to report this time around... Weather is getting cooler, and here in the Dallas area that means decent detecting. Cool here is 50's and 60's.....

I continue to stay in touch with my old detecting buddy Dan Hamilton, from Pittstown, New Jersey, and he makes no bones about coaxing me to move back east. As much as Fay and I would love that, it's just not a viable option now. In any case he just emailed me about an old homesite he was granted permission to hunt, and just to rub it in, added photos. I share them here so you will know why I miss the northeast. This homesite is only a mile from Dan's house, and about five from where I used to live. I can remember the loam type soil as though it was yesterday....

Roads of Hunterdon County Turn of Century Colonial
Roads of Hunterdon Country
Turn of Century Colonial
Barn on Homesite Storage Shed
What stories and treasures lie within?
Storage Shed on Property
Lastly, a tree that begs detecting....

I am sure many of you know what home means, and when it comes to my pastime, my passion, it will always be Hunterdon County, New Jersey.....


Many clubs continue to send me their newsletters, and I appreciate it very much. I look forward to all them, and always find them fun to read. The Pelican Relic & Recovery Club's "Pelican Pouch" is one I enjoy a great deal, and I share it with you here in hopes that perhaps your club can pick up some ideas or tips. The club is located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Danny Brown is the newsletter editor. Thanks Danny for keeping me updated on your club's happenings.


A new member and poster on the FMDAC forum (Sal) enquired about a .999 FMDAC Silver Round he had purchased. He was curious to know more about them, and how many there might be, etc.. We had these produced years ago for the early conventions, and the officers presented me with, what I believe to be, the first one. It came in a flip that said 1 of 20, and the coin itself was imprinted wth 001. Sal's has the number 74 imprinted on the edge of the coin, while mine has just a reeded edge. One of the current officers responded that they too had ordered them for later conventions, but was unsure how many were purchased and given. Like anything else collectible, if you have one of these, please email me at

Early Federation Silver Round


October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!!!


A couple of years ago I did a biographical article for Western & Eastern Treasures on Mark Schuessler, an old friend and a very dedicated treasure hunter. Today I added it to the website, and hope you take the time to read it. Mark has done so much for the pastime, and we all owe him a great deal. Look for the bio under the articles link, or if you wish just click here.

Mark Schuessler
Mark Schuessler at Competition Hunt, mid-80's.....



Was thinking the other night about my job with Garrett twenty years ago, and it got me thinking about just what this pastime is all about, and where we are headed. Back then we had lots more manufacturers, and lots of interest in metal detecting. Today we have fewer companies, pretty much the same the interest, but have we really grown, or are we simply status quo, with many old timers retiring or moving on to that hot spot in the sky?

The dream and the push back then was to elevate the pastime to a higher level. From the manufacturer's standpoint, getting your product in the Sears Catalog, or the L.L. Bean catalog, was the goal. Getting the masses to accept and participate in the hobby was the pinnacle. It was an accepted fact that for the pastime to continue we needed to get beyond the small dealer, selling metal detectors out of his house, and anything toward that goal was considered a worthy effort. I remember working hard at all these things back then, and how difficult it was to get to that next pleateau. To advertise in many of the larger magazines was prohibitive, and the internet was non-existent. Many of the small dealers complained that catalog companies would put them out of business, and to some extent they were correct.

Okay, so why am I bringing all this up now? Because today we are still small. We are still a minority when it comes to outdoor activities and probably always will be. The backbone is still the small dealer, and looking back now we should have realized that, and worked harder to promote them. To that end I hope you will all make an effort to support your local detector shop or dealer. Can he or she compete in price with the major catalog folks? Probably not, but what they can offer is personalized service, and quick assistance when needed. Also keep in mind that no one starts a business or stays in business unless there is a profit involved.

Lastly, because we are still small in numbers, we must be more pro-active in being sure our pastime is promoted to the masses. Forget the manufacturers..... We can do more in that arena than they can. Be an ambassador each and every time you venture out. Be respectful of public property by making sure it looks exactly as it did when you arrived, and always share your pastime with others should they ask. Small things that go a long way....


October 26, 2010

John Howland, a.k.a "Pistol Pete", just shot over his latest Malamute Saloon offering, and hope you will take the time to read it, especally those of you who belong to the FMDAC. It's time we begin to think about our pastime over the long term, and not just what suits our needs today. It's much too easy to become complacent, and accept our fate as it comes along. Please read John's thoughts and views here.


I still get emails from TH'ers asking for tips on using the White's V3i, and wanted to make you aware of the Official Forum for White's Metal Detectors. I know that many of you are already aware of this site, but it offers so much more info than I can. Carl Moreland, who heads the Engineering Department at White's monitors the forum, and recently offered the "Advanced" V3i user guides. With his permission I listed them in the Equipment link herein. These advanced guides will be expanded as Carl finds the time to do so.


Get a few emails asking for information about detecting in France. First let me direct you here. Next let me suggest that metal detecting in France is similiar to what you might expect in any country. Permission is a must lest you wind up having your metal detecting equipment confiscated, perhaps paying a hefty fine and possibly even being jailed. Lastly be very aware that finding ordnance from WWII is not all that unusual. France has had "Demineurs" since the mid-forties, and their job is to find and defuse all potentially live ordnance. Since the group's inception by the government, 650 have lost their lives......

A little more insight here, and this YouTube video was shot on the Normandy coast......

Don't look for these items to be listed on your display!!


October 24, 2010

Part of having people revisit this site is to have new things for them to read, and as a result I sometimes worry when a few days go by, and I donít have much to offer. Then the other day I gave it some thought, and came to the realization that sometimes one can overdo things with BS replacing good information.

Our pastime is now available to millions via magazines, books and the internet. Have a question about your detector, about where to hunt, about what your find might be worth? Just "Google" it!

I mention all this because sometimes itís important to offer information that is not only informative, but fun to read as well. To that point I have to thank many of you who email me with interesting things related to the pastime. Add in John Howlandís contributions, both informative and funny, in the "Malamute Saloon", and I feel comfortable with what this site is all about. Someone recently referred to my site as the ďReaders DigestĒ of treasure hunting websites. I'll accept that as a compliment.

I have toyed with the idea of adding a forum to the site, but really donít think I have the time to oversee something like this. Likewise there are a lot of great forums out there already, and adding more would only be overkill.

A few of you have emailed me asking why I donít talk much about relic hunting or prospecting. The answer is simple. I have not had much experience doing either, and would not be able to offer a lot of good information.

Lastly, I sometimes think we tend to overdo or dissect our pastime a little too much. Itís quite common to find hundreds of forum posts concerning detector settings, programs and how to minutely adjust them for a given situation. Thereís absolutely nothing wrong with this, and I often will find something useful in all of it, but ultimately isnít it really all about being at the right place at the right time? Give me that very old picnic grove that has not been hunted before, and I will just turn her on and go....


Not only do the Brits have the oldest finds around, now they are stealing ours as well. Read about it here, and it looks like this UK detectorist will finally be getting his due.


Received an email from Sondra Bernsweig, a dear friend and early supporter of the FMDAC. Sondra founded Detector Electronics (DepthMaster products) back in the early 80's and I am happy to say they are still going strong. She, her husband David, and her sons Michael and Danny, were always there for me in the early days of the Federation, both in donating money, merchandise and always attending our events. I will always be indebted to her and her family, and so glad to hear they are all doing well. If you are ever in the Boston area (Southborough, Massachusetts) be sure to stop in the shop and say hello. Likewise check out their website Detector Electronics.

David, Sondra, Danny, Rebecca and Michael from Detector Electronics, Corporation


I recently mentioned how important I think it is for clubs to have a website, and wanted to share with you a site that I think really epitomizes how useful they can be. It belongs to the Sacramento Valley Detecting Buffs, in Sacramento California, and offers all kinds of useful information, both about the organization and about the pastime as well. One can spend a lot of time perusing this site. Congratulations to the club, and especially Vince Migliore who created and maintains it.


October 21, 2010

Not a lot to report this time around. Hoping to hunt a very old site this Sunday, but need to do some last minute reconnaissance, as in ascertaining land ownership. Think it's available to the public, but have to check further. Hopefully I can report some finds early next week.


The 2010 FMDAC Convention/Hunt was held last week, and while initial reports indicate a decent turnout, I am dissappointed that nothing was resolved concerning the organization's by-laws, which heretofore have eliminated many dedicated inviduals from running for office. I am passionately tied to this organization having put it a lot of sweat and tears in the early going, but it's time now for some new blood and new ideas. Holding a hunt/convention once a year is nice, and indeed appropriate. Other than that the membership has dwindled over the years, and there appears to be no effort to get them back in the fold. Likewise communication between the membership and current slate of officers is non-existent, save for Mark Schuessler, the Legislation Chairperson, who is always on top of any and all efforts that affect our pastime.

My plea to the current officers.... Put aside your over the top enthusiasm for holding events, and try channeling a little of it into winning back the hearts and minds of those who were once loyal, dedicated FMDAC members. They are out there waiting for a reason to join once again, and don't form a committee to "look into" changing the by-laws, get brave and actually change them NOW! Jeezus, what more incentive do you need?


Had a few emails asking about Mollie, the newest member of our family, and if she was warming up to me. Mollie has become Fay's baby, and pretty much avoids everyone else, especially me (story of my life when it comes to females). Having spent her first two years in a puppy mill, I am aware that she is probably stigmatized, and I am ready to be patient. There has to be a valid reason for her fear, and hope that it will lessen and eventually go away. Time will tell. She does follow on my heels, but as soon as I turn she runs the other direction. Will keep you posted if there is any change. Still a sweet little girl...

Mollie, hanging out with Barnum


October 17, 2010

Wanted to share an email I just received from Chris Altmann, treasure hunter and member of the E.A.R.T.H. Club in Central New York. Rather than explain the details I thought I would just share his email word for word with you. A funny story, and one that shows you never know what treasures await you......

Here is Chris's email, along with two of the photos......

Hey, Dick Ė

This is so bizarre I can't believe it even happened!

After spending time at a club hunt for a couple hours today, Kim and I decided to try her Dad's property for a while (he has an 1850s house).

I soon got a signal under the huge pine tree, and cut a deep half circle with my spade, as I usually do. I flipped open the flap of turf, and saw something filling the hole. I initially thought it was some kind of underground mushroom, but I prodded it with my finger and 2 eyes appeared at the top of it. It was an enormous toad, hibernating!!!!!

I had cut the hole just a slightly bigger than him, and he didn't even get a nick from my very sharp shovel! A couple inches over either way and I probably would have put the shovel right through him.

I took him out, showed him to Kim, took some pictures, then held him in one hand while I dug out the piece of scrap metal that had been directly beneath him (it's in the picture below). I placed him back in the hole (he was a little sleepy) and then put the dirt and turf back on him.

I'm going to enter this as "Most Unusual Find" (sans-toad) at the EARTH Club Christmas party with my piece of scrap metal and the pictures below. :)


May I help you? Chris with new friend
Excuse me?
Chris with New Friend


October 16, 2010

Just received the latest update from John Howland (widely known as "Mr. Pub" along the Southern coast of England), and you can find it in the Malamute Saloon......

This is John's twenty first contribution to my website and I am deeply indebted to him (Jeezus that will surely cost me a few pints when we next meet).

John and I go back a few years. About twenty six to be exact. When I was trying to the get the FMDAC going back in the early 80's, George McCrae, the chief operating officer at White's in Inverness, Scotland, called and suggested that I contact John for some help (talk about a bad day). In any case I did contact John, and he not only helped, but was later instrumental in the formation of the World Council for Metal Detecting.

Today he has become one royal pain-in-the-ass (just kidding Bubba)......

Margaret (Mags) & John Howland

John is not only a very knowledgeable treasure hunter, but a writer of note in the UK, having written many articles for a variety of publications. He is also the author of "Treasure from British Waters", published in 1991 by "Ram Publishing".

Aside from detecting together, we have shared a few pints of ale, and a great many hours doing anything and everything not worthwhile. As a result I consider John a true and trusted friend (there goes another pint....). Do yourelf a favor and read through his offerings in the Malamute Saloon, and if you have any questions or care to contact him, you can email him at Now, if he responds, don't blame me please!!


Roger Horrom (Midwest CoinShooters in St. Louis) once again forwarded an interesting article that shows that detectorists are not all that crazy. Check it out at here.


Ran across a website mentioned on a forum, and thought I would share it here. I have not spent a lot of time studying it or learning it's features, but it looks like it could be of some use to us all. It's called "Historic Aerials" and you can find it here.


Lastly, if you belong to a club do yourself a favor and come up with a website. It's not all that expensive, and I am willing to bet you even have someone in your club that is capable of creating it. My guess is that it would cost you about $200 a year to maintain. It's a vehicle to let interested hobbyists know you exist, and also a way to promote your efforts in the local community.....


October 12, 2010

Willing to bet that most every treasure hunter/detectorist has been asked "what is the best thing you've ever found", or "what is the most valuable thing you've found?" Also willing to bet that a good majority of you responded with something like "a lot of good friends and acquaintances". Am I right? Well, that's not a bad answer at all, and for a lot of good reasons.....

First of all because it's true. This pastime has a knack for bringing like-minded people together in a big way. There's a need to learn more from others, a need for partnering in the field, and a great need to band together to insure our pastime is not legislated out of existence. I think we all know as well that no one else would understand what the hell we are talking about when we mumble things like VDI, Mixed Mode, RX Gain, Hot Rocks, Modulation and Ground Balance. And if you told someone you love discrimination........?

Secondly, using the good friends response allows you to not make public what is no one else's business. Blabbing about your finds can get you into trouble in more ways than one. Not because you found them illegally but because sharing this information leads to further questions like "where" did you find it, how much is it worth, what did you do with it, and on and on. Information that could be passed on to others, and information that could result in theft, or worse. I know a couple of treasure hunting friends who have found items that could put them on easy street, but they were found through hard work, a lot of research and considerable expense. As a result they are entitled to deal with them any way they see fit, and I understand their need for secrecy.

Now, having said all this, I will tell you about a few of my better finds..... When I look back on all my years of detecting a great many items I dug were my "best" find, and as far as value goes, it's difficult to put a price on them. Follow along and I think you will agree with some of these.....

Silver still makes my day

As for coins? Nothing can replace that first coin you found when you first started out. I remember mine, and I am sure you remember yours. Didn't matter if it was a penny, dime or quarter. It was a coin damn it, and validated your investment in a metal detector (No matter what your wife said). Believe it or not my first coin was a silver Washington quarter......

Nothing can replace the first silver coin you find, especially if it followed nothing but clad, and mounds of trash. That shimmer of silver in the hole still makes my day, even after thirty years . Next, what about that first Barber, Seated or Bust coin? I still remember my first Large cent, even though the date was unreadable. At the time all these were my "best" finds, and as I remember them now, they are still my "best" finds.

I remember finding that first "good" ring? It was a small 14k childs ring, and I found it at a rural school near my my house. Over the years I found many rings, some good, some very good, and a few great. Do I still have them? Yes, and I will more than likely pass them on to my grandkids, although they are there for that rainy day should I need them.

Interestingly enough some of the oldest finds I have are not the most valuable. I have ancient coins from the UK, and from France, a few of which are from before the birth of Christ. but their monetary value is not all that great simply because they are not all that rare. Detecting in Europe will spoil you for sure. Once while hunting near the North Sea I had a Brit detectorist tell me that the coins I had in my pouch from the 1600's were rubbish, and you know what? He was right. Hardly worth anything.... It didn't matter however. Finding a Roman coin, or relic from hundreds of years ago will always be on my list of better finds. Just imagining who might have lost it will be with me forever.

A few very old finds from across the pond

So, there you go, a few of my best finds, and a few of my more valuable finds...... Nothing earth shattering, but very, very important to me because they all came with a story. One that I will never forget, and oh yeah, the people I met along the way? By far more valuable than anything I ever dug up.


Got out for a couple of hours on Sunday, and revisited the site I hunted last week, but will not share any photos of my finds.....too embarrassed. Difficult to turn six clad pennies into a great photo (even with the six pulltabs)!


Added another article from a past issue of Western & Eastern Treasures, and hope you find it interesting. It was a biographical article I did on Cliff Steffens, an old friend from back East, and a very dedicated and knowledgeable treasure hunter. You can quickly find it here.


October 7, 2010

John Howland just posted another blurb in the Malamute Saloon. Hope you will check it out here......

Received word from Robbie Morin (a.k.a. Dimeman Robbie) that a video is now available to go along with the Camp Logan effort (See "Latest News", September 11th). Robbie and the Texas Relic Recovery Team do a lot for the pastime, and hope you will check out their efforts on YouTube...(click "Dimeman Robbie" and/or "TxCoindigger" in the search area). You guys are appreciated!

Video was shot by Brett Ford (a.k.a. TxCoindigger)......


October 5, 2010

Came across a new website that blew me away, and wanted to share it with you....

No one doubts that there's a wealth of information out there to help almost anyone, but Metal Detecting Hobby Talk is one of the most thorough and most useful ones I've seen. When I found out that Lee Wiese was the creator I wasn't surprised. When writing the Club News & Views column for Western & Eastern Treasures, I constantly referred to many of Lee's articles in the various club newsletters I received. They were always well done, informative and as I said above, extremely useful.

Lee Weise

I asked Lee for a little background on the site, and he responded accordingly. Rather than condense or edit I decided to share his response word for word....


"I have been metal detecting on and off for 35 years. I built my first metal detector from some drawings in a mechanical/electrical engineering article. Since that early detector I have owned and used almost all the major brands of detectors. My recent favorites are: White's DFX, V3, TDI, and Minelab GT, X-Terra 70, Excalibur II & Explorer SE.

I got back into the hobby after retiring in the late 90s, and my primary detecting focus since then has been jewelry detecting. Recently I took up competition metal detecting, and found that aspect of the hobby to be very interesting and somewhat rewarding.

Over the past ten years I have belonged to a number of metal detecting clubs, where I have given presentations on Metal Detector Discrimination, Coil Selection and Salt Water Beach Hunting. I was also a volunteer officer for one of the three U.S. metal detecting associations. Five years ago I decided to educate myself on website construction, and have been instrumental in updating that associationís website as well as creating club sites and others not related to the pastime.

MDHTALK has been my most challenging website since it uses DHTML, ColdFusion Server Technology, and PHP source code. The objective of the website is to provide "How To" answers. I will give the site six months to see how it develops, and what the response is from the metal detecting community. If it is above average on visits, and there are article contributions, it will stay. Otherwise itís gone and I am onto something new.

Many of the articles and all of the Power Point Presentations have been put together by me. A number of the articles have been published in newsletters, and a few were penned by other authors. The metal detecting classes 101, 102, 103 have not been used, but I have a plan to use them in the latter part of 2010. I am always open to doing presentations on metal detecting, website creation and other hobby related topics.

As for the site....Metal Detecting Hobby Talk is a website dedicated to the hobby of metal detecting. It is designed to be a repository for metal detecting information and data. It offers information on laws & legislation, national & state resources, metal detecting clubs, local requirements, training classes, recent news & events, as well as numerous metal detecting articles. Other authors also contribute articles....


Thanks Lee for the background, and I urge all of you to check out Metal Detecting Hobby Talk!


October 3, 2010

1919S Merc and Small SS Childs Ring

Finally got out and did a little detecting this morning, and came home happy. Not exactly a banner day, but a Mercury dime and small sterling ring made my blisters feel a little better. Had hoped the little rain we've had would help the digging but no deal. I gotta say however cool temps and a little breeze does wonders for the soul here in Texas. October, where the hell have you been?


My friend Jim Meaney keeps sending me good information that not only informs but is useful. He recently sent me this website on pennyweights, ounces, grains, and a website that breaks it all down for you. Be sure to look at Online


Roger Horrum, president of the Midwest Coinshooters, St. Louis, Missouri, also alerted me to this numismatic tidbit.Thanks Roger.....


Thank you all for the feedback on the Oak Island video (courtesy of YouTube) I offered here. The Oak Island mystery is one that has fascinated me for years, and hope I live long enough for a fitting end or solution to it all. My guess is that won't happen..... Do you have theories or ideas? Let me know. Email me at

In the same vein The Lost Dutchman Mine is another long standing, mysterious treasure tale that never seems to end, and continues to take the lives of many who search for it. This recent story is just one example....


September 21, 2010

Short post to let you know I am alive and kicking. (Well, okay I am alive.....)

Received another interesting article from Jim Meaney, concerning a dig at Faneuil Hall in Boston. I am a big Boston Fan (only not as in Red Sox), having gone to school there years ago. Great town and great people. If you are interested in this article check it out here.

Jim is a member of the Massachusetts Treasures Hunters Association, and Tony Brogna does a helluva job with their website. When you have time check out his handywork, and the going-on's of the MTHA.


New Club in Kentucky
Tana Allen with her White's XLT

Heard from my good friend Tana Allen, that a new club in Richmond, Kentucky has formed, and is looking for members. The Central Kentucky Research & Recovery Team meets the first Tuesday of the month at 7PM, Madison Hills Christian Church, in Richmond. A club website is in the works, but in the meantime to learn more go to their Facebook Page.


There are a great many treasure stories around, and one that I've always been fascinated with is the Oak Island Mystery. Found this on YouTube and thought I would pass it along....interesting theories here..

Interested in knowing more? Be sure to visit the Oak Island Treasure site.


September 14, 2010

Bubba John Howland has posted yet another great blurb in the Malamute Saloon , and it will give you some food for thought next time out in the field. It concerns searching boundary walls, and I can attest to his advice in that I found a few old coins hunting around them years ago when I lived in the northeast. Give it a look-see, and thanks as usual John.

Thanks as well to old friend Jim Meaney for a news items that had escaped me. If you know who Mel Fisher was, you will find this interesting. Thanks Jim for the info...appreciated.


September 11, 2010

First and foremost, today is September 11, and a time to remember all the many brave people who perished nine years ago in New York city, Washington D.C., and Shanksville, Pennsylvania . There's no doubt all Americans will remember that infamous day, and along with it, the feelings of fear, helplessness and sadness. I hope that we will also remember the coming together that took place at that time in history, and how everyone was a proud American. We were not Democrats or Republicans, Northerners or Southerners, black or white, young or old, blue states or red states, Christian, Jews or Muslims. We were Americans, one and all, and we need to always remember that. Especially today, September 11, 2010.

God Bless America

Fay and I were in St. Remy, France on September 11, and will never forget the kindness of the French people. They cried with us, and offered their homes if we needed a place to stay. We have come to love this country very much........

Fay took this photo September 12 in St. Remy, France

Amy Maruso
Treasure Hunter and Author, Amy Maruso

Got an email from Amy Maruso, old friend from back East, and contributing editor for Western & Eastern Treasures, concerning the potential for a sudden rise in silver prices. She referenced an article by Patrick Heller ( that I found interesting, and wanted to share it with you. As a coin hunter I hope Mr. Heller is correct.... Read his predictions here.

Amy has her own website How to Sell Your gold, and if you have any questions at all about precious metals, bookmark it. Lots of good, very useful information.....


Finally went out detecting last weekend. Spent all of 30 minutes hacking away at the rock hard ground and gave up. Found two pennies, and each was encased in a small, rock hard nugget. To get them out I had to pound on them with the back of my digger. Wednesday we had about six inches of rain (along wth flooding and couple of tornados), and I will give the same area shot in the next day or two. Believe it or not, even with the heavy downpour, I am still betting the soil will be compacted beyond belief. Just the way it is here in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.


Received another email from Robbie Morin, a TH'ing friend in Houston, about his interest in Camp Logan, a WW1 training camp in that area. He and six other detectorists hunted the camp back in 2007, and while they didn't find much, he decided to learn more about the site. Of importance of course was what the camp looked like back then....

Robbie begin collecting old postcards of Camp Logan, and now has over one hundred in his collection. He also put together three slide shows on Camp Logan, and you can view them on Youtube, under "DimemanRobbie". He's also shared quite a few detecting videos there as well. Highly recommend you spend some time viewing them.

As a result of Robbie's research he was asked to loan some of his collection to the Buffalo Soldier National Museum, and they have been on display now for two months. Add into that newspaper interviews and mentions on local TV, and you will see that there is a lot more to metal detecting than meets the eye. I can tell you from personal experience that getting interested in local history is not only logical, it's easy and very addictive.

Thanks for sharing all this Robbie, and for promoting this great pastime!

Added article titled "The Nuts and Bolts of a Metal Detector" under the articles tab, and hope you enjoy it. It tells about my tour of the White's factory in Sweet Home, Oregon, and was first published in Western & Eastern Treasures in June of 2007.


Put up another recipe for you pasta fans. It located in the Poor Gourmand section. As always, it's an easy one to prepare, and one you will make again and again. At least I hope you find that the case. If you enjoy cooking, please send me your favorite recipe. Would love to hear about it, and share it here with others. Send it to Thanks....


September 4, 2010

Was reading recently about a detecting club's push to get people to write their congressmen, and to voice their opposition to a detrimental bill about to come up for a vote in the House. To facilitate this effort they offered a scripted response, with all the pertinent congressional contact information. It led to me remember the same efforts way back when the internet was not a vehicle we had at our disposal. Back when making contact with anyone in government was extremely difficult, if not impossible.

In the early days of the FMDAC I was privileged to be touch with three Senators who not only listened, but also took the time to learn more about the pastime and the business of treasure hunting. Unheard of back then, and even more so today, as congressional aides usually respond via their own scripted response. I will be eternally grateful to the late Senator Chic Hecht, from Nevada, Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, and Dale Bumpers of Arkansas.

Senator Hecht always managed to find a way for us to speak at Senate hearings that affected the pastime, and always followed-up with a printed copy of the session. He also gave me names of aides, and phone numbers in case I ran into any problems.

Morgan Fairchild
Morgan Fairchild

I will also never forget writing a letter to Senator Lautenberg, asking his position on a bill, and getting a personal phone call from him a week later. He not only took the time to call, but spent easily fifteen minutes on the phone, and promised to get back to me with more information. He followed up on that promise, and continued to keep me updated on the progress of the bill in question. He continually voiced his opposition to the bill, and it eventually died a slow death, never getting out of committee. Senator Lautenberg will always have my gratitude, and I consider him a real representative of the people.

Lastly I will always remember Senator Bumpers coming up to me after speaking before the Committee considering the California Desert Protection Act. He personally thanked me for attending, said he liked what I had to say, and further stated that he had no idea that such bills could impact regular, everyday folks just trying to pursue a hobby. He promised to study the bill in detail before considering his vote. Again, just a personal touch from someone who didn't have to say anything, but was sincerely interested enough to do so.

A little aside to the above hearing (California Desert Protection Act)

When Senator Hecht's aide called to tell me the time I was scheduled to speak, he also told me to be prepared for the media. Said they were really excited about what I had to say and to dress well. Wasn't sure what that meant, but when I showed up the next day, along with Archie Ray (our legislative person) and his wife Rosalie, we saw TV camera's, flashbulbs going off, etc., down the hallway near the meeting room. I remember looking at Archie, and saying, "Damn Arch, what the hell is going on? I am getting nervous!" To make a long story short, also speaking that day (in favor of the bill) were Morgan Fairchild and Shelly Duvall, both well know actresses, and both extremely eye-pleasing. That, evidently was the buzz and focal point in Washington D.C., July 23, 1987! Can't say I was too disappointed sharing a table with these ladies."


Found a couple of interesting videos that I wanted to pass along. The first is a follow-up to the video I posted under coinhunting a while ago, and will give you some idea of the procedure UK detectorists go through to register their finds in that country.....

With Hurricane Earl in the news recently I thought I would show a video my friend Brian Mayer offered up last year. For TH'ers living close to the coast there's nothing like searching the beach immediately after a hurricane. Tides remove a great deal of sand and beach, allowing deeper finds to come to the surface, and also bring in finds from further out.

Be sure to check out Brian's Facebook page called The Jersey Shore Beach and Surf Hunters. Lot's great information to be found there.


August 31, 2010

John Howland just posted his latest contribution to the Malamute Saloon. Hope you will check it out. John never fails to make me laugh, and sometimes he even know's what he's talking about! (Man am I going to pay for saying that...)

As John and I have aged (and another payback for sure), we have at least agreed on a few basic tenets. (1) Detecting for us now should be relaxing and stress free. (2) Sometimes the company is better than the take home finds, and (3) if all else fails, there's never a pub or bar too far away.

John's favorite book
John, reading his favorite Tome

Had a couple of emails from folks asking if I could recommend a book or two that might help them increase their finds. I referred them to my recommended listing, but decided as well to add a complete listing of what I have on my shelves. If you are interested please go to my collection. Understand, many of the books are quite old, and that there are many other books on the market certainly worthy of adding to my library. The list merely reflects what I have purchased to this point.

Came across a really neat blog, loaded with great bits of information, and added it to my favorites. Do yourself a favor and check out Jimmy's MD Blog.


August 28, 2010

Haven't posted anything of late, and thatís pretty much because nothing of note has happened to interest anyone. Have been dealing with a few minor ailments, but the doc has given me a new pill, and hopefully that will do the trick.

The weather remains hot, although itís gotten slightly better. Until the ground softens some this detectorist will spend his time looking for a site or two to detect later. Our highs are now in the mid-90's, and not in the 105 to 108 range.

Mollie, the newest member of our family, is still very wary of me. Hoping eventually she will warm up, but it's been a month now, and if anything, she's more nervous around me then before. I have heard from others who had adopted rescued dogs, and they have said this is not unusual. Guess it's a good thing I haven't seen one of these puppy mill operations. I would probably be a one man wrecking crew. Fortunately Mollie loves the hell out of Fay, and seems to love her new surroundings.

Want to thank all of you who have signed my guestbook, and for the kind remarks. Hopefully you will all find something of interest here over time. At least that's my goal. Having a website, and not keeping it up, or letting things lapse is not fun for anyone. Also, please don't hesitate to email me if you have any questions or suggestions. I may not have all the answers, but promise a response one way or another.

I regret that I havenít kept up with the many detector models and their various features. There was a time when I could talk about any given model, from any manufacturer, and that was back when there were quite a few. As I've gotten older I do not want to spend a lot of time thinking and fussing with settings, or making constant in-the-field adjmustments.

I look at and experiment with what my detectors have to offer, but this is pretty much accomplished at home. When I am out hunting I want only to concentrate on the audio signal and the visual readout. As a result I pretty much use the preset coin/jewelry program, maxing gain or sensitivity when possible. I bring this up because I get a few questions about how I set this mode or use this or that feature.


Lastly, added another recipe in the Poor Gourmand area for those who are interested. It's for a pretty easy and pretty tasty Chicken Piccata. Enjoy......


August 17, 2010

Big Bubba from the UK sent along a new entry for the Malamute Saloon and hope you will take a few minutes and read it. Chesil Beach is intriguing, and definitely worth a cursory look-see if you ever wind up in the area. Beware however the dangers....

Also check out John's very simple "Pork Chops ala Chesil"....Easy to make ahead, and I can attest to how good they are after spending an hour or two searching the beach. Take a break, throw them on the coals, pour a beer, and enjoy. After that who the hell cares what you might find....

Lastly thanks to Jessie Thompson for forwarding the following article. Will be interesting to see what develops with all this over the coming months.


August 15, 2010

Excuse the lapse in posting here.... Not a lot to report. We are currently in our 21st day of over 100 degrees, with indexes around 110, and yours truly does all he can to not venture outdoors. Am I a wimp? You bet! If the soil here were a little more forgiving I might consider late afternoon or early morning searching, but the black gumbo we have here in this area is total BS. It's without a doubt the worse soil I have ever encountered, and that goes for whatever you might be doing with it, detecting, gardening, building, etc..

Foundation repair here in the Dallas area is big, big business, and we have had our foundation lifted twice now to the tune of thousands. Why homes are allowed to be built on slabs here is beyond me. What happens is that the clay soil shrinks in the heat, and your foundation goes along with it. You can try and keep it watered, but it's a losing battle for most here in the Dallas area. Suddenly your doors don't close, and you start to see cracks in your walls and ceilings. The folks who repaired ours went down 60 feet to get to bedrock, and we had to have them back two years later to lift the back again. Welcome to Texas!

Have had a few enquiries about Mollie and how she's getting along......Thank you all for asking. Appreciate it.

Mollie and Fay
Mollie and Fay....

Well she still doesn't trust me, but I think I am gaining ground. Fay went away this weekend and Mollie "had" to deal with me. We got along pretty well. She went out when I asked, did her business when needed, and even slept on the bed with me at night, be it a few feet away. That's some progress.

Mollie is also starting to put on weight, and we cannot see her ribs like we could when we brought her home two weeks ago. She's a work in progress, and a fun one. She wants to play and does the "tuck and run" thing from time to time, and seems to like hanging with Barnum. Will keep you posted as time goes on.


Otherwise I got crazy from the heat the other day and decided to make Beef Stew. Yep, just what the doctor ordered when the temperatures were over 100. Can't tell you why, but suspect it might have been the great aromas that I remember from making it or better yet the hearty taste. Whatever..... Posted the recipe in the Poor Gourmand link if you are interested, along with photo. Some of you post pics of your detecting finds...I post pics of my food. So much for getting older, and for living here in Texas.


August 7, 2010

Discussing the Electroscope
Mick Turrell, Dick Stout and John Howland, discussing the merits of the Electroscope, UK, circa 1980's....

Found an old photo today of Mick Turell, yours truly and John Howland from a visit to the UK, and wondered if anyone is still using an Electroscope? Back in the 80's this product sure created a stir. The Electroscope company I believe is now out of business, but back then did a lot of very heavy promoting. The product's design was impressive, but ultimately most of us came to know it as a glorified dowsing machine, and let me add that I don't knock dowsing. I have personally used the proverbial bent coat hangers, and witnessed their strange gyrations over water pipes, etc., and cannot explain the phenomenon. From what I remember someone took an Eletrocscope apart and said it was just a rat's nest of wires, all going nowhere.

There are still directional locators on the market today, but have yet to hear anyone share a success story using one. If you happen to use one or have had success, email me. at Would love to know more.

P.S. regarding the photo....yes we were heavy smokers and drinkers. Today however we've given up smoking.


I like to peruse YouTube a lot, especially for treasure related items. Found this one, and while it's not new, it's a great story and an indication that just perhaps there's a chance for treasure hunters and historians to join forces down the road.


August 4, 2010

John sent along a new article for the Malamute Saloon, and if you are a Garrett Ace owner be sure to read his blurb about their use in the wet sand. He also tries to deny the fishing photos, but it's okay. I know better. There was a time when he loved to fish, but now if you give him a choice of a fly rod or a beer.........?

Weather for the past week? 105, with heat indexes near 110. Forecast? More of the same into next week, and no rain in sight! Welcome to Texas!


July 29, 2010

Not a lot to report today..... Mollie is still adapting to her new home, and very leery of me. She hangs out with me in my office, but the least little attempt to pick her up results in her running away (boy I know that's going to elicit some responses from a few of you). We suspect she had some issues in the past with a male, although we can't be sure of that. She's pretty well accepted Fay, and is developing a routine, so all is not lost. She's a sweetheart!

Trying to like me
Mollie, hopefully my friend to be....

Also got an email from my good friend Bill Chapman in Colorado. Haven't heard from Bill in some time, but he saw the mention of Mollie, and wanted to congratulate us. For years Bill was the newsletter editor of the Soundoff, the monthly publication of the Eureka Club in Denver. I became a big fan of the newsetter, not only because it was packed with a lot of great information, but because of the adventures of Chelsea, Bill's dog and treasure hunting friend. Bill lost Chelsea a couple of years ago, and I knew at the time what he was going through, and how he felt. When you have a dog, he's a member of the family, a best friend, a sidekick, a treasure hunting partner, and nothing can take his or her place when their gone. Not sure why I mention this....guess it's my way of saying how much we miss Bailey. Only been a month, but seems like she's still here. Can't tell you how many times we've accidentally called Mollie, Bailey.....

On another note, Bill is the owner of Gold-n-Detectors, in Golden, Colorado, and a great guy to do business with. He's a multi-line dealer, and his catalog (which is downloadable) will knock you out. If you are ever in need of mining or prospecting supplies, metal detectors, accessories, and want to deal an honest, fair and very knowledgeable individual, I can't think of anyone better than Bill Chapman, so next time you are in the Denver/Golden, Colorado area, look him up and tell him Dick Stout said hi.


July 25, 2010

Welcome Mollie

For the few of you who responded to the loss of our little pug Bailey....

Yesterday we brought home a little black pug named Mollie. We adopted Mollie from the Dallas, Forth Worth Pug Rescue organizaton, and look forward to her becoming part of our family. She will not replace Bailey. Bailey will never be replaced in our hearts. Instead Mollie brings in her own personality, her own loving ways, and yes, Barnum approves. So far so good.

Welcome Mollie

Mollie was rescued from a puppy mill in Oklahoma, and while only two years old, was used as a breeder. She looks like a puppy, and one can only imagine the horrors she went through. Evidently cages were stacked on top of cages, with feces and everything else showering down on the dogs below. My wish is that people who subject animals to this kind of living hell, experience something similar in their life. Sound cruel? Sorry...they deserve it!

Mollie is learning her way around the house, and pretty intrigued by steps. We can imagine what it must be like to have a bed, regular feedings, and a whole lot of love. Will keep you posted on her adapting. We are thrilled to have her.


I was reading through the June 27th entry John posted in the Malamute Saloon, and he recommended SPAM as a great quick and tasty meal...... It reminded me that years ago when Fay and I first moved to the Dallas area, we used to enter the SPAM cooking competition at the Texas State Fair. The stakes were worth the effort, with the winner receiving two free round trip tickets anywhere Southwest Airlines flew, plus $100. Over the next few years we had fun trying to come up with that one unique and special concoction that would bring home the bacon (as in moola). Fay was fortunate to win a second place one year, and I an honorable mention another. My recipe for Spanish Spam Cake is located in the Poor Gourmand


Just found out that Jimmy Sierra has updated his Discovery Tours website, and hope you will give a look-see. If you are ever thinking about detecting in the United Kingdom I highly recommend Jimmy's tours. You will have access to fields that over the years have produced many a great find, and also feel part of the local scene as well. Nothing like talking treasure in a British pub! To learn more, go to Jimmy's Discovery Tours.


July 22, 2010

Be sure to check out John Howland's latest update in the "Malamute Saloon".....same ole John

Speaking of John I just wanted to share with you the Bubba Howland I know. Please look at the following two photos carefully.....

Bubba with Fish
The photo John uses to brag about his fishing skills...
Bubba with wine
The photo of John fishing as I remember it....

Jersey Joe

Recently emailed my old friend Joe Attinello, asking if he remembered someone from the early FMDAC days. His response? "Hell no, I am 88 years old.....". I couldn't really believe that in that it seemed like just a few years ago we were hunting the Jersey beaches and attending monthly Federation meetings.

Funny how you tend not to think you are getting older, despite the aging process that begins with the aches, pains, the onset of naps here and there, and the proverbial "growing middle". Of course on the bright side you get to the point where you say "what the hell, I want to enjoy myself while I still can". Not sure that's a good tradeoff for taking better care of yourself, but it tends to rationalize things some.

Joe Attinello was and is responsbile for me being where I am today, and I don't mean that in a negative way. Years ago I was a novice coin collector, and started noticing the ads for metal detectors in the various numismatic publications. I kept thinking that if they really worked as advertised I could add to my coin collection without having to pay out sums of money. Keep in mind however that my collection at the time consisted of relatively inexpensive flea market purchases.

I mentioned my interest to a friend at work, and he said he had a friend whose father sold metal detectors out of his home, and gave me the phone number. The number belonged to Joe of course, and we got together a week or so later. Joe was a White's dealer, and suggested I start with a Coinmaster model. The price as I remember was around $200, a large sum of money back then (and still is). The dilemma? How to pull it off without my wife finding out how much it cost? Ring a bell?

Fifty dollars here, twenty five here and there, and after about a month I paid it off, and brought it home, anxious to start finding gold coins, diamond rings and all that was needed for me to retire in a couple of years. Fay was home that day, and asked about the cost. I got brave, confessed and said "come on, let me show you how this works", knowing full well I had no idea what to do next.

We lived on two and a half acres of pretty much wooded land back then, and didn't have a lot of lawn area. What lawn we did have proceeded to give up every nail used in building our house, and every bottlecap for every make of beer in America. Fay of course was observing all this, not looking all that excited about my "investment". Can't remember her exact final response, but if you are married, you can fill in the words.

Anger set in and I decided to take my "investment" down to a park in Frenchtown, and give it a go. I pulled into the parking area, stepped out of the car, turned on my detector, again not having any clue as to what I was doing, and got a loud sound. I took my screwdriver (which eventually became the best damn digging tool I ever owned) and popped out a silver Washington quarter. My first find, and one that I suspect stopped me from taking a trip back to see Joe.

Joe and Irene Attinello
Joe Attinello and his lovely wife, Irene, Atlantic City, 1985

Joe and I begin to hunt some together, and we were instrumental in starting the Mid-Jersey Research and Recovery club in Trenton, New Jersey, along with Ron Womer. Our first few meetings took place in our homes, but later we found a meeting place in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. The club size grew, and we planned all kinds of trips and activities.

Joe was an avid beach hunter, and could spend the entire day there, never tiring. He also discovered a relatively inexpensive way to make the trip. Atlantic City had just become a gamling mecca, and most all the casinos would offer bus travel for a miminal fee, simply to get you in their doors. They would also give you ten dollars in tokens, or a free lunch.

Joe's plan? Break down your detector, put it in a small gym bag, get on the bus. Once there, get your tokens or lunch voucher and hit the beach. Be finished in time for the the return bus, and you had a drive free, relaxing trip to the shore.

Joe was also a guy who would let you know how he felt (which is still something I miss about living in New Jersey). Remember once stopping at a diner on our way to the shore, and after getting the bill Joe looked at the guy at the register and said "Jesus, and you don't even wear a mask!".

What I remember most about Joe was the way he could recover coins. He would center his target, and then gently lever it out of the ground with his screwdriver, never leaving a hole of any sort. He was quick, clean and I never remember him marring a coin. No matter how much I tried I couldn't duplicate the feat. Wish I had a video of that now....

Joe if you are reading this, thank you for your freindship and fun times. Say hello to Irene, and hope to see you in the near future.


July 16, 2010

Be sure to read John Howland's latest offering in the Malamute Saloon. He offers some insight on a new breed of battery, and also tells of an adventure that I think will make you laugh. It did me for sure. Knowing John and his cohorts I believe every word. One only has to be in his company for about ten minutes to be either laughing your ass off or be in big trouble. Unfortunately the choice is not always yours.....


July 12, 2010

John Howland added a follow up to his posting of July 4th in the Malamute Saloon, and offers more information on the paratrooper who landed on the roof of the church in St. Mere Eglise, France. I would urge all of you to read more about this historic day, and to appreciate the enormity of this effort and the sacrifices that our men made that day. May they rest in peace!


July 10, 2010

Thanks to friend Lisa Law for the following musical gem. With my love for detecting and my musical background I am amazed that I have never heard it before. I pass on the lyrics first because they sometimes get lost in the video.

  • What you want is just outside your reach
  • You keep on searchin'
  • You're walking down that Pensacola beach
  • You keep repeatin'
  • While you're waiting for that sound
  • Apparatus to the ground
  • You're stealing from the lost and found
  • But what you find
  • ain't what you had in mind
  • Until you find your Rolex in the sand
  • You won't be stopping
  • Until that solid gold is in your hand
  • You won't be happy
  • Nah, call your office on the phone
  • You can't say you won't be coming home
  • You fell into vacations on a-oh-oh-oh (??)

Enjoy the Real Estate's version of Beachcomber


July 8, 2010

Dick Tichian
Dick Tichian, Photographer

Worked all day scanning photos from my ole New Jersey friend Dick Tichian. Dick was the photographer for the FMDAC from it's inception, and we could always count on him to record any and all of our events. Dick is not only a great photographer, but a friend to the pastime in more ways than one. He continues to stay in touch with the enitre cast of characters, and if asked, will give you the "shirt off his back". Thanks Dick....

For the longest while Fay and I pushed Dick to get a computer. FINALLY, just a couple of weeks ago he took the leap. He's still getting his feet wet, but for all of you out there who know and remember Dick, email him at Know he would love to hear from you.

I am fully aware that many of you who visit this site are not interested in these "old" photos, but that's okay. There are those who do, and most importantly I post them for me.....Keep in mind most are scans, and the quality is not as fine as it should be. If you are interested they will be photo sets, 12, 13 and 14.

As always, thanks for your help Dick


Another great story from the UK. Thanks to Jessie Thompson for sending this.....Largest Ever Find, and lastly a big thank you to JR at Treasure Trove Dreams for his very kind comments.


July 6, 2010

Just received my latest Treasure Hunter's Expess, and for a small newsletter it's full of great information. In this issue Paul offered his thoughts and ideas on locating caches. One article is titled Seeking Buried Treasure, and another is Reason & Deduction for Burying Treasure. Besides his years of in-the-field experience, what I really like about Paul's writing is that he never fails to offer something new and informative, no matter how long you've been detecting, or how much you think you know. This issue was not exception. For those of you who don't know who Paul Tainter is let me point you to this short bio!

If you are interested in finding out more about this great little newsletter, email Paul at The Treasure Hunter's Express. Tell him Dick said hello!


A couple interesting articles came my way this week, and thought I would share them here. Thanks to Mat Hopper, my boss, and Jessie Thompson, president of the Nor'easters Club for sending them!

The first concerns Mel Fisher, and the recent sale of his salvage rights. Fay and I had the pleasure of meeting Mel in 1985. He had just found the location of the Atocha, and was the guest speaker at the Atlantic Alliance of Maritime Heritage convention in Atlantic City. The president of the organization, Charles McKinney, was a supporter of the FMDAC, and had invited us as our convention was also being held across town at the Trump Castle. We made a quick trip in hopes that we could talk him into coming to our banquet as a guest speaker, but needless to say he was in great demand at the time and his speaking fee was out of sight. He was gracious however, and even put a large gold chain (a signature find at the time) around Fay's neck. Will see if I can find that 35mm slide soon and post it here.

My boss Mat emailed me this CNN article and asked if I needed time off (jokingly of course). Think you will like this......An Austrian Treasure.


Lastly, my old friend Dick Tichian, treasure hunter and FMDAC photographer for many years, sent two large envelopes of photos for use here on the website. Hope to pour through them over the next couple of days, and share a few of them with you. Granted only a few of us old timers will remember the occasions and the characters, but just maybe a few newcomers will appreciate the look back too. Thanks Dick!


July 4, 2010

Want to wish all of you a Happy 4th of July. Truly one of our greatest holidays! Please be sure to read the latest contribution from John Howland in the "Malamute Saloon" Just one more informative and well written piece from one of the smartest treasure hunters I have known. And John....don't let that go to your head. I am on my third glass of red right now....

Thank you also John for remembering our special holiday.


July 1, 2010

Found out yesterday that Don Vickers, FMDAC Southwest Chapter President, and FMDAC Webmaster, has decided to throw his hat into the ring and run for president this fall. Couldn't be happier.....

Don Vickers, FMDAC SW Chapter President
Don Vickers, FMDAC SW Chapter President

Over the past couple of years the FMDAC, for whatever reason, has become stagnant. The only news coming out of the organization involves events and trips, some of which have been cancelled at the last minute. Likewise cruises are nice, but the majority of members are not able to afford such a luxury.

Another nagging problem.....communication between the officers of the FMDAC and membership is non existent. The FMDAC forum is easy to navigate, easy to understand and yet the current officers cannot find time for a simple "hello". Two recent chat sessions were scheduled way in advance, in hopes that the officers would make time to be present and respond to members concerns. Only one, the secretary, showed up. Many of the questions still remain, and it's clear that the other officers are not interested in what the membership thinks. Their silence speaks volumes.

The FMDAC by-laws should also be changed to allow for others to run for office. As it stands now, you have to be an officer or chapter president for at least two years. That eliminates a lot of new and fresh ideas from flowing into the organization, and given the current lack of communication that exists, it discourages anyone from wanting to become involved.

In my mind it's time for a change!

Don Vickers and I have not known each other that long, but it doesnít take a long time to realize someone has a love for what he does, and that itís contagious. That love, that fervor, is what has been missing from the FMDAC for past couple of years, and I feel he can make a difference. I hope other FMDAC members will join me in supporting his candidacy. Good luck Don!!


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