Tuesday, November 21, 2017

11/21/17 Report - Gold Pendant. Hallmarks. Thanks Guys. Seagrape Trail Monday.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Here is a recent find by John C.  Like the Pelican in Piety ring found by Dan B., this pendant is also hallmarked.  Below is what John said about it.

This piece was found north of Sebastian   Inlet.  Noticed similar markings to Danny's ring. Crown  on the top and the leopard head on the bottom signifies London.  Much lower carat gold. I think 375 is 9 kt.

We can't see what is on the front yet.

Front and back of same object shown as found.
Photos by John C.

You can find a lot of good information to help you decipher hallmarks.  First you might check out wikipedia.


And here is a very detailed document on British hallmarks.


You can learn a lot when you research finds.  That is half the fun of finding old and interesting things.

Dan B., who found the Pelican in Piety ring that I showed on 11/8, had the following to say.

Wanted to thank you for the recent excitement pertaining to the ring.

I was thinking what is crazy is that until the notorious find of the pelican of piety in Fort Pierce in 2010 it would have been an obscure Spanish religious symbol only well known to the few who had in-depth knowledge of the fleet and its items!?!? Uncanny

I am actually considering contacting LW and G for our records of sales in 1962 and 1963. Also have a few strings out to some old hunters who may have seen it on someone. I'm enjoying this. Thanks again. Hope you are well.

Ps. Loved "what is grass for"

Thanks Dan.  As you suggest, the cool thing is how it adds to the awareness of those who are interested.  That might seem like a small thing, but the effect is multiplied many times.  The effect can multiply without being recognized while raising awareness and the general level of knowledge having an impact far into the future.

We owe a debt of gratitude to Captain Bonnie Schubert, who literally uncovered the gold pelican artifact after it had been concealed for hundreds of years in the ocean, and to Laura Strolia, who conducted research and published the  historical background and helped us understand the significance of the artifact and the Pelican in Piety icon.   She raised our awareness and increased our knowledge.  That is obvious to me from the comments and responses of the readers of this blog. We can not tell what long term impact that might have. This is Thanksgiving week so it is an especially good time to thank those who have contributed so much to our understanding and the enjoyment of our hobby.

(For those of you who don't know, What is Grass For is a post I did not too long ago.)


Seagrape Trail Monday
Photo by Darrel S.
Darrel said, Went back to Sea Grape with CZ21. Detected from 1:30-4:00pm. Low was 2:45pm. Nice low sand and hundreds of hits! Mostly nails, scrap iron, space debris, tiny washers, and older coins. Only detector out on beach or parking lot!

Seagrape Trail Monday
Photo by Darrel S.
Thanks for the report and photos Darrel.


While I'm giving thanks, I want to say thanks to all of you who read this blog, and especially those of you who contribute and respond.  The responses I get encourage me to keep going.

The surf will be a little higher today.

Happy hunting,

Sunday, November 19, 2017

11/20/17 Report - Beaches Filling For Time Being. Interesting Theory on Ring. Miscellaneous Finds. Another Front Coming Through.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Seagrape Trail Sunday
Photo by Darrel S.
Last week we had some decent beach detecting.  Some nice old things were found at a few locations.  A lot of beaches produced nothing good, but a few did.  That is pretty much over and I'm going back to a "1" rating on my Treasure Coast Treasure Beach Detecting Conditions Scale.

Darrel S. was at Turtle Trail Saturday and reported that it had filled in and the bags were covered again.  According to the reports I received, it seems like the best conditions were earlier in the week.

There was still a nice cliff at the back of the beach at Seagrape Sunday, as you can see from the above photo.

Below are a couple photos from the Jupiter and Carlin Park beaches from Saturday, I think it was.

Jupiter Beach by Inlet Saturday.
Photo by Joe D.
Carlin Park Area
Photo by Joe D.
Thanks for the photos and reports guys!

In my Saturday post I said the Pelican in Piety ring was 14K.   The 750 mark indicates that it is actually 18K.  That was brought to my attention by a couple of readers, and I made the correction in the previous post.

I got an email from Peter H. concerning that ring.  Peter offers an interesting theory.  Here is what he said.

I'm certain many others will help identify the hall mark on the ring . Its 18carat, London hallmark and the date letter appears to be from 1962-1963 . London is represented by the leopards head ,the crown and 750 is the carat mark and the style of the letter g appears to be date  it to 62/63. ( Jacksons Hallmarks, UK)
What I find intriguing is that its defiantly the pelican in piety ( you can see the blood from the pelicans  chest feeding the young) which is a rare unusual  symbol and it appears to be made in London . Could it have been commissioned  and lost by one of the 1960 -70's treasure hunters who possibly found something similar on the treasure coast and subsequently  sold the original? It just seems too much of coincidence that such a modern ring and symbol appears on a 1715 treasure  beach which is known for producing the same religious iconography What are the chances of that ? The plot thickens!  or maybe its just me being too fond of conspiracy theories !! .As you often say " the find is only the beginning of the story" 

I really appreciate your posts - thank you   Peter H.

I don't think the ring was found on the same beach as the Pelican of Piety artifact, which, if I correctly recall, was found on the Nieves site, but that isn't important anyhow.  If it was commissioned by a treasure hunter who found something similar in the past, we might find out about that.  It isn't a huge fraternity and word gets around.  Interesting thought anyhow.

I saw photos of finds from earlier in the week from beaches that were producing much of any shipwreck treasures.

Miscellaneous Finds From Ambersands Last Week
Finds and photo by Eric H.
That is quite a variety of finds made by Eric H.  Looks like a bunch of mangled aluminum from the renourishment sand as well as a ring and some other things.

Thanks for the report Eric.

Maybe we'll get to see photos of other good finds from last week.  I know there were some more cobs and other interesting things found both on the Treasure Coast and to the north.

There is another TV show you might want to check out;  Finding Escobar's Millions.  So far it is been Not Finding Escobar's Millions, which I wouldn't have minded if it was more reasonable.

They told how Escobar buried barrels of money and killed whoever was forced to bury the money, yet the first field they checked was a vacant lot in the middle of a bunch of multi-story buildings where whatever happened would undoubtedly be seen.  That is the last place I would bury a barrel of money and a murder victim.  Unsurprisingly they found nothing but junk there.

The best thing that happened to me last week was that I was able to do a little detecting. Not much, but some.  Although it was a small fraction of the amount of time I used to spend, at least it was something.

The last couple of years, I haven't been able to detect much at all. There were two reasons for that. One was because of other responsibilities, and the second was because of an injury. Sometimes the injury made it impossible, and other times  when I could have tried, I was afraid of aggravating the injury. I think it was less than a week ago I actually told my wife I think my metal detecting days are over. I'm glad things improved and I was able to do it for a while without any problems.

Looks like we are going to get a four to six foot surf Tuesday.  That isn't bad, but the wind doesn't look as favorable as it was last week.  We had a few days of continuous north wind last week.

Happy hunting,

Saturday, November 18, 2017

11/18/17 Report - Modern Ring With Old Symbol: Pelican In Piety. Encrusted Bracelet.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Interesting Modern Ring Find.
Find and photo by D. B.
This ring found on a 1715 Fleet beach is a modern ring but seems to have an interesting connection to one well known 1715 Fleet artifact.

I was asked what the image on the ring is?  As you can see, it is a bird feeding baby birds.  The question is why that would appear on a ring.

Do you remember the Pelican in Piety artifact and author Laura Strolia's research concerning that.  If not, you can use the following link to read about it.


I'm pretty sure the image on the ring represents the pelican in piety.  Here are just a couple images of a pelican in piety to illustrate that.

Two of Many Varieties of the Pelican in Piety Image.

You can find many more by doing a quick internet search.

Here are the marks on the inner band of the ring.

Photo by D. B.
First is a crown, then 750, then a shield and then 9 or 19.  I can't see the crown and shield real well from the photo.

I assume the crown indicates that the item is gold.  The 750 indicates 18 karat.  I don't have a good guess about the last two marks.

Author Laura Strolia says that the Pelican in Piety image was more rarely used after the 40s.

Cool find DB.  Congratulations!


Find and photo by Scott.
This item was recently found in the Cape Canaveral area.  Currently in cleaning, we might find out more about it soon.


Some good items were found on the Treasure Coast last week.  I heard of quite a few.  Some nice items were also found in the Melborne area.

The beaches that were producing were scattered.  Many were not.  That makes it difficult for me to issue a beach conditions rating.  A few beaches were good, but many of them were not good at all.  

We'll have nothing greater than three to five feet for a few days.  It looks like the wind will be switching a lot.  That is not like what we had recently with days of north wind.

The weather is beautiful for the snow birds.

Happy hunting,

Friday, November 17, 2017

11/17/17 Report - 1715 Fleet Finds From the Treasure Coast This Week. Half Reales and Other Things.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Two Half Reales Found This Week On The Treasure Coast
Finds and photo by Jerry P.
Here are some finds made by Jerry P. this week.  Above are two uncleaned half reales.

Here is another sheet of lead.  Just a few days ago I showed a similar one found by Darrel S.  This one also has the cloth imprint that I discussed in a recent post.

Below are a few more finds made by Jerry at the same location.

Bullet Finds.
Find and photos by Jerry.

John Brooks Yesterday.
This is how John Brooks looked yesterday.  Frederick Douglas looked about the same.  There seemed to be a lot of sand in front of the beach that was keeping the waves from doing much to the beach.

John Brooks Beach Yesterday.
Near low tidea a small dip was developing on the front of the beach and some shells were being exposed.

Erosion Control Bags At Tuttle Trail.
Photo by Darrel S.
I had a few photos of the Turtle Trail area and also Seagrape Trail, but it seems my computer won't open them right now.  This beach started filling and was more filled today, especially in front of the bags.

There were a good number and variety of finds made there.  Jerry's were made I think Wednesday.  I saw pictures of several others, including more cobs, lead, pieces of spikes and a variety of other pieces.  I also heard of a high karat gold ring being found.

Although Turtle Trail seemed to be filling, it wouldn't take too much, if the conditions were right, to freshen it up again.

I had more pictures, hopefully I'll get them working again before long.  I might have to ask some of you to resend photos if I can't get them opened.

The surf will not be as big tomorrow.  On top of that the wind will be shifting.  We had a nice period of north wind, even if it didn't affect too many of the beaches.  Most of the activity seemed to be in the Turtle Trail area.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, November 16, 2017

11/16/17 Report - Cache of Silver and Gold 12th Century Coins. Nice Old Ring. Beach Sign. Clad Coins.

Writen by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeacesreport.blogspot.com.

Signet Ring Uncovered Along With Coin Cache
Photo by Alexis Grattier
See link below.

More than 2,000 silver and gold coins from the 12th century were found buried in the rubble as the archaeologists were digging the ground to try and identify the corner of an infirmary that was once situated at the abbey, said the researchers from University of Lyon II and France's National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS)....

Cache of Coins Uncovered.
Source: See link below.

The medieval loot included 2,200 deniers (or pieces of silver) mostly issued by Cluny Abbey itself as well as 21 gold dinar coins, originally from the Middle East which were stored in a canvas bag... 

Gold Dinars Recovered with Coin Cache
Photo by Alexis Grattier
See link below.

Here is the link to read more about that.



Joe D. sent the following message and find photos.

Just returned from my semiannual trip to Georgia to visit family! Of course I had to throw in a little detecting while there! On the last day ( yesterday) in my last few minutes of detecting some old torn down house lots, I found a nice silver solitaire about 5 inches down! Got confusing signals, but dug anyway! It was near other metal of course! And I was lucky to find it at all! Here's a before and after polishing! I will have to get the stone tested, but the ring says sterling! Looks to be pretty old! Also found some wheaties and some other interesting house stuff! 

Sterling Silver Ring Find After Cleaned.
Find and photo by Joe D.

Same Ring as Found by Joe D.

 Joe also mentioned a show on Netflix called "Detectorists." He said, "It's from the BBC! So English humor, but there are 2 seasons and it's pretty good! Don't know if you have heard of it, but it's not a reality show! Worth a look! Takes a few episodes to get into, but I think you will appreciate the finer points of the story! I bing watched the first season already!"


Darrel S. dug up the following sign on the beach a few days ago.  It reads "Stay Off Dunes."

Find and photo by Darrel S.

Darrel said the parking lot at Turtle Trail was full yesterday while the lot at Seagrape was empty.


Tuesday I detected less than an hour, which I think was still the most that I had a chance to do all year.   No serious detecting or anything, just a little quick entertainment.   I mentioned that there were coins on the beaches of South Hutchinson Island.  Here is what i found with my little light-weight Ace 250.

Coins and Crematory Tag Found Tuesday.

Couldn't tell what the crematory tag was until I got it cleaned.

Looks like we'll have a few more days or three to five foot surf.  I'd say beach conditions are still what I'd rate as a level 2.

Happy hunting,

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

11/15/17 Report - Artifact Research Process: Thoughts and Considerations. Example of a Lead Find. Three Days of North Wind.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

Lead Found by Darrel S. A Couple Days Ago
Photo by Darrel S.
We're supposed to have three days of north wind.  The surf will be three to five feet, but the swells have a bit of a north/northeasterly direction.  That is the thing that could make it interesting even though I wish the surf was bigger.


You might be asking yourself why I am showing this piece of lead again.  That is a good question.  The answer is that it gives me an opportunity to discuss my approach to researching finds.

If you dug up this piece of metal you might quickly conclude that it is junk and toss it, or you might respond very differently and quickly conclude that is something more exciting - maybe the lead lining of a treasure chest.  If you are on a TV treasure hunting show, you might be more PT Barnum than archaeologist, in which case you would hold it up and breathlessly announce that it is definitely from a treasure chest, and you know that is true because you've found hundreds of them before.  No matter if you are on a TV show or not, you might hope that it is something exciting and jump to the first exciting conclusion that comes to mind.  The fact is that it can be really difficult to be sure what an item like this is, so what I am going to try to present today is a very thoughtful, systematic, almost scientific way of proceeding that might be slow but will give you a good chance of coming up with a very good conclusion. The process of unraveling the identity, meaning and significance of a find can be a lot of fun as well as very informative.

It is a natural tendency to jump to a conclusion based upon your current knowledge, understanding or hopes, and then do everything you can to support that conclusion.   The key to what I am suggesting today is avoid jumping to quick conclusions, but rather to question everything, seek evidence, and carefully consider whatever the evidence might suggest.  It is better to start with questions rather than conclusions.  Ask yourself a lot of questions and carefully weigh the evidence as it is discovered.

I'm thinking of one item I found that I posted in this blog years ago.  I've changed my mind about that item a number of times, but now I feel about 95% confident that I know what it is.  It took a long time to get there and I changed my mind ( that means "learned something" ) a number of times.  When you learn something significant it will often cause you to change your mind.

Back to the lead item at the top of the post.  Could it be the lining to a treasure chest?  ( No one ever said that it was, I'm just using that as an example.)  I doubt it.  Why?  Lead-lined treasure chests have been found before, but according to what I've read, that is not how the coins on the 1715 Fleet were shipped.

The Cargo of Coins Aboard Nuestra Señora de Atocha, or “The Treasure Chest Defined” is an article written by Corey Malcom reprinted online from The Navigator: Newsletter of the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Society, Vol.16 No.5, June, 2001.  Here is an excerpt from that article.

 From impressions seen on both the coin masses and the interiors of the chests, the coins were put into cloth bags before being boxed. The fabric appears to have been a plainweave of fairly large, crude thread, yielding a cloth quite similar to burlap. Unfortunately, none of the actual material survived. Other examples of shipwrecked coin chests are rare - in fact, only one other has been found. An example from the 1715 Nueva España fleet was recovered in 1965 off Florida’s east coast. This crate was also of a simple design, and had dimensions comparable to those from the Atocha. A length of 54.0 cm, a width of 28.5 cm, a height of 27.8 cm, and a plank thickness of 2.5 cm yielded a chest with a storage capacity of 0.026 cubic meters (0.91 cu. ft.) - approximately 60% greater than the 1622 examples. It had no apparent decoration, hinges, or lock. Somewhat differently, its sides were not beveled, but flat. No data is available for the coins carried inside. All in all though, there appears to have been little evolution in the manner of shipping coins...

What, if any part of that, applies to the lead find shown above?  The article seems to suggest to me that the treasure chests, or coin crates, on the 1715 Fleet were not lined with lead.  Could there possibly be any exceptions?  I would think so.  Who said this was from a typical coin chest?  Might the hypothetical treasure chest be a passenger's personal chest and therefore be different from the typical coin chest?  Again, I think that is possible, however I would also guess that finding something like that would be less likely than finding something from one of the many coin chests stored as cargo.  However, I have not presented any evidence that it would have anything to do with a treasure chest or anything like that.

Dr. Lori on the Oak Island TV show suggested that a metal plate with holes in it could be from a treasure chest and everyone seemed to be very impressed.  There was no analysis or evidence presented at that time.  Maybe there will be some in the future.  We'll see.

For more of the Malcom article, here is the link.


Now that we've considered one hypothetical idea and done a little research relative to that, lets consider another idea.  Could it be hull-sheathing?

We know that lead hull sheathing was used and you can see examples in the Mel Fisher artifact database.  Lets look at what an authority has to say about lead hull-sheathing to see if we can learn anything.

Lead Hull-Sheathing of the Santa Margarita is another article authored by Corey Malcom and reprinted online from The Navigator: Newsletter of the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Society, Vol. 16, No. 1 December, 2000/January, 2001.

Here is an excerpt.

Lead sheet in one form or another has been found on other Spanish vessels roughly contemporary to the Santa Margarita. The wrecks of the 1554 fleet found along Padre Island, Texas; the 1618 Honduran fleet’s San Martín, wrecked on Florida’s East coast; the mid-1500’s St. John’s wreck, the 1559 Emanuel Point wreck in Pensacola Bay, and the wrecks of the 1715 Nueva España fleet, have all produced lead sheet which was being used to cover seams, patch holes, or guard against shipworms. The sheet from these sites is generally described as similar to that from the Santa Margarita - thin, with a cloth impression - indicating that it was all used, or created in a comparable manner...  

Here is more from the same article.

The recovered lead bears many holes pierced by the fasteners that held it in place. Though none of the fasteners has survived (likely due to the aforementioned electrolysis) these holes, along with impressions in the lead, reveal the type that was used and the density of their spacing. The tacks that held the sheets to the hull had broad heads of 22mm diameter, and shanks 5mm square. They were spaced at 5-10 centimeters, with their placement tending toward the edges. The direction from which the tacks pierced the lead show that the sheets were placed with the cloth impression toward the hull, leaving a smooth exposed surface that was less friendly to adhering organisms. 

You can read more of that article if you want.  Here is the link.


Now we have some information that we can use to analyze the lead find.  If we were holding the item we could look for holes near the edge, measure the size, spacing etc.

If you look at the photo you can see what might be a cloth impression.  The reason I picked that photo is that is shows the cloth impression.  The impression could esaily be over-looked or thought to be insignificant.

Some people think the impression lead sheathing was made by the lead being installed on the hull over a layer of cloth.  Other people think the impression has to do with how the lead sheets were manufactured.  In either case, we can see what appears to be a cloth impression.  If you have any interest in this at all, I would recommend reading the entire article.

Some peope will say all of this is unnecessary.  They might be able to look at the item and immediately know what it is.  If they can do that, they have previously accumulated the necessary knowledge through long experience.  That is great, but when you are unsure, a research thorough research process is necessary. And I would encourage anyone to avoid being "too" sure, and continuing to learn and see if there is anything they can add to their knowledge.

One book on artifacts ( I had the reference here earlier but lost track of it somehow ) strongly makes the point that in the 18th century, items were used and repurposed and reused time and time again.  That would certainly be true of lead.  It could be used for a lot of things and it can be very difficult to say what it was last used for.  If it was sheathing, it could be kept for a variety of other purposes including being melted to make lead shot or fishing sinkers.

What I tried to do today was give you some idea of the slow process of researching a find rather than jumping to rash conclusions without sufficient continuing research.  The individual resources and facts were only presented to illustrate the process.

I know that some of you will find very little if anything new or interesting in this post, but I hope some of you benefit from what I tried to show of the long slow process of researching a find.

Disciplined research and thorough analysis can be key to unlocking treasure mysteries, while jumping to premature conclusions, no matter how exciting they might seem, can delay or prevent the solution.  I highly recommend an analytical scientific approach.


I'm eager to see what three days of north wind will do.

Happy hunting,

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

11/14/17 Report - Decent Detecting Conditions on Some Treasure Coast Beaches. Reports From South Hutchinson Island, Turtle Trail and Rio Mar.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of treasurebeachesreport.blogspot.com.

John Brooks This Morning.
 I visited John Brooks this morning for a short while.  There were some scallops, which I tried to capture in these photos.  I don't know if you can see them very well.

There were some nice flat spots below the dips at low tide that I would have liked to check out, but didn't have time.

Frederick Douglas was about the same.  There were weathered clad coins along the slope at Frederick Douglas.  

Small Scallops on John Brooks This Morning.
 At Fort Pierce South Jetty beach there was a long high cut.  There were plenty of clad coins and there was almost no junk.  

It was a pretty good coin line - the kind of thing that might hold a ring or some surprise if you keep at it.  It was really easy detecting.  The coins were very shallow.  You could fill a pocket in a short time.

Fort Pierce South Jetty.

Turtle Trail Yesterday
Photo Submitted by Darrel S.
Darrel S. sent the above photo with the following message.

Sea bags were exposed near first flag pole. Ton of sea weed. Saw numerous friends detecting. 

My first hit was a nice piece of lead sheeting.

Broke my shovel on a large object. 

I got one hit after hit once I got away from the bags. All the sand that was on top of the bags was in front of them. 

I dug several long bolts, stainless nuts, washers, and nails. 

Most of the long bolts were very deep. I was getting into her black sand...

Thanks much for the photos and report Darrel!

Tomorrow or sometime soon I'll post and comment on some new finds. 

Jerry P. sent in the following photos from Rio Mar yesterday where he did some detecting.

Rio Mar Yesterday
Photo by Jerry P.

Rio Mar Area Yesterday
Photo by Jerry P.
Jerry said his best find was a 1942 wheatie.

Thanks for the photos and report Jerry.

There are some beaches that are producing a lot of clad and at least one beach that seems to be producing old shipwreck finds.  I'm almost sure a few cobs will be found. Maybe I'll get some specific reports about that. 

I'm a little late with this but I'd rate the beach conditions as being at least a 2 on my 5 point rating scale.  If I'd been out to do some more checking on my own, I'd given an earlier rating.  

The surf is supposed to run three to five feet for a few more days.  After the small amount of time I spent out today, I'd say there are a lot of spots worth checking out -  more if you are interested in things other than old shipwreck items.

Happy hunting.