Whether new or old to treasure hunting, it never hurts to stay on top of this exciting and ever changing hobby as technology and data retrieval continue to evolve and open many new doors of opportunity for adventure and wealth. Plus detector today are much better to detectors made many years ago. So if you are new to the Hobby, or you are a veteran, and you are tired of hunting the same old places, then perhaps you should consider moving on to more challenging sites, or perhaps there’s a specific treasure that’s always had a hold of your imagination. What ever the case Research will be the key if you want to find better goodies.
If you want to look for a specific treasure lost to History or you want to explore old ghost towns or seek out lost mines or even go relic hunting. You will have to research until you are blue in the face. You will have to track down every little story about your mission that you can find. You are going to need every resource you can find. Resource’s that contain new product information, equipment field tests, prospecting, news, reviews of books, how-to-articles and so on. The list is endless.
So how do you know if a certain treasure that you have heard about is a real treasure story? There’s probably no way to know for sure, but you’ll definitely want to do some research and by sticking to some pretty simple rules you’re chances for success will improve considerable. First, do all your own homework. Rely on no one else’s research, for good reason. Assume that there are other treasure hunters gunning after the same treasure you are seeking. Competition Over time has a way of providing a lot of false leads which, all too often, are adopted into the treasure story. The treasure tale comes down the pike and eventually lands in your lap. If you do your own homework and have become an expert on your target you’ll find it much easier to recognize the false tales from the facts. Likewise you should expect to find contradictory and faulty information in your own research. Once in the field, if your historic and written information doesn’t quite match with geographic or other information you’ve developed from your site area, you can make corrections, and even alter your search location much easier.
Information collection on the Net has opened doors to old and new stories, documents, maps, oral histories, old letters, journals, and church and government records concerning lost treasures that you once had to drive or fly to the local archive and spend endless hours digging thought boxes, files and microfiche to search for. The two best places on the Web right now to find new stories of treasure are appearing in family genealogies where stories of ancestors having had some connection to a treasure story are perhaps appearing publicly for the first time. Likewise, Native American oral histories are also being documented in family genealogies, many for the first time in written form. From several of these records I have come across stories about conflicts between Native Americans and Whites dating from the Colonial period thought the 19th century westward expansion. With these records the stories are being told from the Native American perspective, which can include what happened to the treasure and belongings taken from Anglos on the frontier during such conflicts. Also another good source that can be used can be found in the county / local histories that appear on the Web from countless numbers of communities all across America where a treasure legend is a part of their local history.
Finding New Sites:
Locating new and often untouched hunting ground is no big deal. The question is how creative can you be when it comes to locating new sites?
First, what is a site? A site is any location where human activity has occurred. Old mines, ghost towns, roads, military camps, old parks, schools, churches, and fair grounds are most of the common places to find some old goodies. How about lesser known sites? What early industry existed in your area? Timber perhaps? Where were the old mills? Where were the logging camps? Did the industry use water or rail to move the product? Either way there had to be stops for loading and off loading products. Check out early homestead records where were the early ranches, stockyards, farms and so on. Other sites can be developed by researching how these industries moved their products. This same type of research applies to most any industry. Infrastructure is another often overlooked area of research. End of track towns, as they are known, were usually transient, tent and shantytowns occupied by railroad workers and could always be found at the end of the track. Sometimes these temporary towns remained for years while workers completed major projects. In some cases the railroads erected permanent structures, some which still exist today. Infrastructure research will provide you with new sites to hunt from the days of the Pony Express. Following infrastructure research into the 20th century you can research water, power, telephone, rail, etc. All had labor camps which housed employees who raised power and telephone poles and strung line. Likewise, the same applies to irrigation, aqueducts, and dams.
Permission to Hunt:
Always follow the first rule when on public lands, and that’s is to always check with local authorities to determine if using a metal detector is legal. As far as private property goes, I know many are reluctant to approach landowners for a variety of reasons. The worst that is going to happen is you get a "NO”. NO big deal move on to the next place. Maybe you’re looking for a cache, or a hoard of legend and your site turns our to be on private property. That doesn’t mean you have to tell the owner you’re whole treasure story. Play stupid and inquire about doing some coin shooting on their property. If he brings up the cache story, by all means be interested and work at developing a friendly relationship with the owner. You may want to continue your search over a period of time and return to the area several more times.
Search agreements are fine and recommended. But they are only as good as the integrity of the landowner. Say you dig up a small cache or a huge treasure. If the owner tells you to leave the prize and move on, you’d better do just that or risk going to jail. Enforcing these agreements in court is difficult at best and rarely results in the 50/50 split you were hoping for.
Here are a couple tips I picked up from U.S. treasure hunting clubs. You can keep a sharp eye on the local rural fire district’s list of upcoming scheduled control burns. Often when people want to raze an old structure on their property they will help out the local rural fire district and schedule the structure to be torched for training purposes. A club representative will contact the property owner prior to the scheduled burn to obtain permission to hunt the site before it goes up in flames.
Another idea is to target large construction sites where they can hunt area that will soon be bulldozed for new construction. Largest sites allow the treasure hunter to work in areas untouched and far removed form the hazards of working crews and equipment working bear by.
What if I Find A Big One:
I know of only one tried and true rule on this subject. KEEP IT TO YOURSELF!!!!