Tuesday, June 25, 2019

6/25/19 Report - Musket Gun Barrel Mold. Cleaning Coins. Benefit of Metal Detecting. Gold Prices. Way to Remove Rust.

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

Encrusted Musket Barrel as Found.
Find and photo by Will R.

If you saw yesterday's post early, maybe you didn't see the link I added later in the day.  That link was to a old post in which Will R. talked about some nice finds and how he made a mold of the gun barrel shown above.  Here is what Will said.

I love your last post. I ran into a similar situation last year. I was detecting a private site on the intercoastal when I found a brass butt plate, then the side plate and one of the ramrod tubes. Then it hit me... where's the barrel? Soon I found the barrel because it had one of the ramrod tubes stuck in the EO chunk. I took it home and did as I do with most EO's and put it in a tub of fresh H2O. The next day I noticed the end of the EO was oozing sludge. I figured this was the end of the barrel. I gently flushed the end of the EO with water and then I knew I had rare opportunity. This was a perfect mold of the metal barrel that once was there. I carefuly flushed the rest of the mud and sludge out and made sure it was clear of all metal. Now here's where the fun began. I used fiberglass resin and made a perfect mold of the barrel. Here are some pics of it. You're welcome to use them if you like.

Finished Copy Made From Mold.
By Will R.
If you used the link yesterday, you might have already seen this, but I thought it was worth posting again for those who might have missed it.


Surfaces on Recently Dug Dime and Quarter That I'll Be Cleaning.
I'm going to use diluted Muriatic acid.  I'm doing four dimes and three quarters, all having a black patina very much like the dime and quarter shown in the photos above.  Some are a little worse than others, but all are similar.

You hear that you should never clean coins.  There is no danger with these coins since they have no collector value other than the melt value.  They are already damaged beyond what any body would pay a premium for.  Therefore there is no danger of actually hurting the value.

Make sure you know that is the case before you clean any coin.  In the case of possibly valuable coins, definitely don't clean them until you know for sure.

I hope to have some photos for you as things progress.


I heard another way to remove heavy rust from iron objects.  On the Antiques Roadshow it was said that a fellow found a clump of rust and buried it in his barn in horse manure.  It looked like it did a good job of removing the rust from what turned out to be a medieval key.


The price of gold has been really flying for the past week or two.  It went up another $28 per ounce in the past couple of days.  That puts it close to $1430 and moving.


I've commented about some of the fake elements of some of the "reality" treasure shows.  I realized the other day that I actually hope that some of the other so-called reality shows are fake.  It would be sad to think that people are actually like that.  I could list a number of shows that I've seen enough of to actually hope that they are really fake.


It's been established that people who spend more time in parks and other natural settings tend to report higher levels of health and happiness, but new research shows there's actually a magic number for it.

According to a study published this week in the journal Nature Scientific Reports, spending 120 minutes a week strolling a tree-lined street or sitting by a lake can greatly enhance a person's overall sense of well-being. Less time didn't yield any significant benefit, the research showed...

Here's the link.


As always you can quibble with the conclusions and details of the article, as I'm so prone to do, but isn't that one thing we all like about metal detecting or treasure hunting.  You have to be out there.

There is something about feeling the sun, wind and rain.  I like being barefoot.  I like feeling the grass or sand beneath my feet, and will accept the risk of fire ants or other dangers.  I like when it is stormy and nature is getting a little frisky.  You feel nature even more.

On the other hand, there is the garbage and pollution littering the out doors.

Millions of tons of plastic enter the oceans every year, polluting our seas, littering our beaches and endangering wildlife.

Plastic can take centuries to break down, and instead of quietly disappearing beneath the waves, it has a way of coming back to haunt us.

Almost 1 million shoes and over 370,000 toothbrushes were among more than 400 million pieces of plastic recently found washed up on a remote group of islands in the Indian Ocean.

Great chunks of plastic have been found inside the stomachs of everything from seabirds to whales, while tiny microplastics are eaten by fish and other sea creatures, ending up as part of the food chain...
See https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/24/health/plastic-pollution-rivers-oceans-scn-intl/index.html

The litter makes me a little sad.  It intrudes on nature, and makes it a little less "natural."  Litter seems to intrude upon nature and removes some of the healthy-giving and aesthetic benefits.

One of the side benefits of the dig-everything and take-everything philosophy that I encourage, is that it leaves the environment a little better than you found it.


The price of gold continues to rise, going up another $28 per ounce in the past couple of days.  That puts it close to $1430.

Happy hunting,

Monday, June 24, 2019

6/24/19 Report - Encrusted Objects (EOs), Clumps and Conglomerates and Their Contents.

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

Photo of Terry holding the EO before cracking and what was in it. The canvas and hemp rope was still in intact.
Find by John C.  Photo submitted by Jerry P.

I received the following email with photos from Jerry P.

“IF YOU DON’T KNOW DON’T THROW” This is a lesson I learned from John C. One of the biggest mistakes I made when I first started hunting the Treasure Coast was throwing unidentified objects away. One day Terry Shannon and I were hunting the Vero Beach area and I heard a good target sound off on my GT. I pulled up an encrusted object aka an EO. I walked over to have Terry swing his coil over it and he agreed it sounded like a good target. At the end of the day I decided to crack it open in the parking lot and inside was a copper/brass grummet from a tarp, or at least that’s what I assumed it was. I gathered up the pieces and threw it in the trash can. When I got home I called John C. to give him the beach report and told him about the grummet EO. He congratulated me on the find and I thought he was joking and I told him that I threw it away. I will never forget what he said. “Excuse me Jerry, did you say you threw it away?” He texted me a photo from his private collection and it was the exact some copper/brass grummet partly encased in coral. He explained that it was in fact a brass grummet from a canvas sail probably 1800’s and don’t you know the rule, if you don’t know you don’t throw? Sick to my stomach as I came from a long line of sailers and that piece would look great in my collection. I asked John if he could do me a favor and trash dive first thing in the morning to retrieve the EO. He was there as the gates opened but after going through multiple cans he couldn’t locate it. Since Terry was going there a bit later that morning, and he seen me throw it in the can, I ask him if he could retrieve it. Both Terry and John scuba dive but a true measure of friendship is dumpster diving first thing in the morning, thank you both! Besides meeting new people and making new friends a large portion of the fun is the research and learning the story behind each object. If you don’t know don’t throw.

I would love to see some good EO’s, please share.

Jerry P.

Photos submitted by Jerry P.

Thanks for the email and photos Jerry. That is a good lesson that bears repeating.  I couldn't agree more.  Very good topic suggestion too.

I looked back through the blog and found quite a variety of encrusted objects, including such diverse items as coins, a gun barrel, cannon ball, sword hilt, and gold ring.

Here is one good photo showing and EO before and after cleaning.

I used electrolysis to clean this spike after removing some of the crust mechanically.

In order to keep the broken iron spike from rusting again, you could add a protective coating.

Coins can be totally encrusted too.  I had some that looked like nothing other than a ball of sand and shell bits.  I can't find of photo of that right now, but here is a cob that was partially encrusted before being cleaned.

Same Half-Reale After Some Cleaning.

Here are a couple encrusted objects that I've posted before and I still don't know what they are.  Here are a couple more EOs that I haven't opened or cleaned yet and do not know what they are.  I can tell they are partially hollow.

The biggest hollow one is about seven inches across.

Here is another than seems to contain a blade-like object.  It is about seven inches long and one inch wide.

Seven by One Inch Encrusted Object.
Here is a flat one, that has an intriguing coin-size bump on it.  The surface coins are for size only.

Thin EO With Bump.
You can see the bump near the upper right of the object.  Here it is from the side.

Bump on Flat EO.
I curious about the bump.  It could be a bolt or something like that, but that one will not be easy.

Some EOs contain a void where the object used to be.  A cast can be made the shape of the void.  I had a post showing a cast of a gun barrel made from such a void but can't find that post right now.

Two EOs.  
Top One Showing Square Void From Spile or Something Similar.

I had another post on using X-Ray to determine the contents of an EO.

The next clump is composed mainly of melted lead that stuck to sand and shells.

Melted Lead in Conglomerate.

Some clumps contain interesting things besides metal.  Here is a photo of a nice calcite fossil shell sticking out of a clump.

Clump With Nice Calcite Shell Showing.

And here is a clump containing a fossil tooth.  It is the brown nearly rectangular object near the center bottom.

Fossil Tooth in Conglomerate.
Here are links to some previous posts on EOs.  The first one is about an X-Rayed EO.

Here is a good one I was looking for a just found.

Will R. found gun parts and was able to make a mold of the barrel.

Send me your photos of EOs and the objects found inside.

A lot of mine haven't been opened yet.

Sometimes I think it is better to leave some of the matrix intact.  Makes a nice display.

I have a lot of heavy-duty coin cleaning to do.  Maybe I'll get some good examples from that.

Happy hunting,

Sunday, June 23, 2019

6/23/19 Report - Overgrown Old Site Checked Out With Some Success. More on Fake Reality TV. Artifact Identification: Bronze Weight.

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

1942 Quarter Find.

I've been mentioning a site that I hoped to hunt.  It is very overgrown, but it was obviously the site of an old building of some sort.  There are scattered remains of an old chimney.  I finally got out to check it out a little with my detector, and even though there was barely room to detect between the trees and brush, I was still able to get some coins.  They were mostly from the forties, but I suspect that there is older material there.

As you can see, the coins were not in great shape.

Buffalo Nickel.

1945 Mercury Dime.
From just scratching around a little, it looks like there are a lot of coins to be found there - much more than I expected.  I don't have any idea what went on there, but obviously something.

This is what most of it looks like.  You can see the problem.

Overgrown Site.
There was no room to sweep, so I used a non-motion mode and stuck the coil around wherever I could.


Bronze Ring.

RITTO, Shiga Prefecture--It took 20 years, but archaeologists reckon they now know the purpose of a bronze ring unearthed at an ancient site here: as a weight for measuring commodities.

That, in itself, may not sound exceptional, but researchers are excited because bronze ring weights have only previously been found as burial accessories in centuries-old tombs in China and the Korean Peninsula.

The artifact was found in 1999 during excavation work of a dry riverbed that flowed during the late Yayoi Pottery Culture period (300 B.C.-A.D. 300). The dig by the municipal education board also turned up earthenware fragments and bronze arrowheads...
Here is the link.



Gold has been going up nicely lately, being at about $1,400 per ounce.

Gold Prices from 1994 to Today.


You know that most reality TV programs are fake to some degree.  You never see the film and production crews, which you know have to be there even though everyone, including the sellers, "acts" like they aren't present.  That in itself misrepresents the reality of the situation.

I've talked about some fake TV treasure shows, and detailed a few examples, but am personally coming to a greater appreciation of how fake they must be.

The most important thing for a TV show is to get ratings - otherwise it won't be on.   They have to get attention.  One show that I've watched a good bit is American Pickers.  On the surface it might seem like one of the more honest ones, but now there are web sites claiming that it is very fake.  I won't even get into all the allegations, and I don't know how accurate they are, but you can read the allegations for yourself.


For me this isn't about one TV show or kind of TV show.   There are much larger social implications, but I'll resist the temptation to get into that now.


A WW II veteran is united with his French sweetheart after 75 years.



Happy hunting,

Saturday, June 22, 2019

6/22/19 Report - Cache Hunting and Finds. Paper Money and Fancy Serial Numbers Having Value.

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

Cache Hunting Book by H. Glenn Carson.
Cache hunting is a lot different from hunting coins on a beach.  Depending upon the type of cache hunting you are doing, you might come back with nothing a lot of the time, but if you hit find a cache, it can hundreds of coins or other objects all at once.

One of the things I like about cache hunting is that you can find paper money as well as coins.

One of the challenges is that your metal detector ID meter won't be a much help a lot of the time.  It isn't going to read pot of coins or bag of paper money.  And a lot of the time you'll have to sift through a lot of junk, metal and otherwise.

You don't have to find a ghost town to hunt caches, they can be found a lot of places, including back yards, and maybe even your own house.  You might be surprised how often people hide valuables and forget about them.

There are also more broken down abandoned buildings than you might suspect.  Sometimes they are hidden in overgrowth and sometimes there is little to indicate that they ever existed.

I've reported on a lot of cache finds in this blog.  Most were accidental rather than specific targeted caches.

Here is a very small part of one Florida cache find made by one of the readers of this blog.

Anyhow, Glenn's book is the only one I know of about cache hunting.  There is a newer addition (Cache Hunting II).  There must be some by other authors, but I don't know of them.  There isn't a lot of useful information you can find on the topic in general.  You almost have to have a specific cache in mind, otherwise it is very general.

Glenn used to write for at least one treasure magazine, as well as authoring a lot of books, and for a while, I think it was in the 80s, published a treasure hunter's newsletter.  We communicated on a couple projects.

He once put together a group that invested in a Mexican silver mine.  That turned out to be a scam and people lost money.  I know there was talk of people suing, but I don't know who was the defendant or whatever became of that.

I've reported on a few caches found by readers of this blog in the past.


Serial Number 82882228
I enjoy checking the serial numbers of my bills.  I haven't been doing it more than a few months, and this is one of the better ones I've found, even though it isn't worth much.   The serial number is 82882228.  Some people call any serial number with only two different numbers a binary.  Others only consider a serial number with only 1s and 0s to be a binary.  I've seen a few with two numbers like that offered on eBay for around ten dollars.

It would have been better if it was a radar or repeater, ie 88222288 or 82828282.

Checking serial numbers is really easy, although the valuable ones are surprisingly rare.  Condition is important.  This bill is limp and worn.  That isn't what serial number collectors want.

Of course older bills and silver certificates occasionally show up and can be valuable.

The more leading zeros you have on a currency, the higher the value will be. 

Serial number 00000001 – 00000009, most valuable
Serial number 00000010 – 00000099, always carry a premium
Serial number 00000100 – 00000999, could carry a premium
Serial number 00001000 and higher will rarely be worth more than face value

I've seen 00000001 serial numbered bills listed for tens of thousands of dollars, but the odds of finding one are very long.

If you are interested in old US bills or fancy serial numbers, here are some web sites to check.






Many people collect "star notes." Star notes are used by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing to replace misprinted/damaged currency before it goes into circulation. These replacement notes are printed just like normal notes, except there is a star printed in the serial number. On Federal Reserve Notes, the star is where the block letter normally is (the last letter of the serial number). On Legal Tender notes and Silver Certificates, the star is where the prefix normally is (the first letter of the serial number).  I've shown one of those before.


I got into another container of dug pennies and separated out a couple dollars of spendable or cleanable pennies.  I hate those unusable salt water destroyed zinc pennies.


The surf is very small, and the tides aren't very big either.

Happy hunting,

Friday, June 21, 2019

6/21/19 Report - Ordnance on Beach. Mystery Item Identified. Checking Dug Pennies. Coastal Flooding. Mystery Jar.

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

Ordnance Found on North Carolina Beach.

A lady in North Carolina found an unusual item (above) at the beach, which she took home to put in her garden.  It began smoking.  Police identified the item as some kind of white phosphorous military ordnance.

Here is the link.


I don't know what she found attractive about it, but it is a reminder to be careful what you pick up at the beach.


Speaking of ordnance, the last two mystery items were shot down like ducks in a shooting gallery.  It seems they were identified within minutes of being posted.

Mitch King was first again, identifying yesterday's mystery item as a shot bullet.  He sent these pictures.

Hollow Point Bullets
Scott B., with his military and law enforcement background, quickly followed describing the item as a fired hollow point bullet.

Thanks guys!


I came across a container of pennies that I hadn't looked at in many years, and I know I didn't look a them well.  Probably I only looked for old dates or unusual coins, so I decided to look for the better ones to see if there might be any error coins.  Some of them were in very nice conditions while others were totally destroyed.

Here are a couple examples.  There were both worse and better coins.

Corroded Penny.
Not Perfect but Nice.
The varying patinas always amaze me.  There was bright red to black and silver colors.

No valuable coins were found, but there were a couple keepers.

Most will be rolled and exchanged.


Total cost of adding sea walls

1. Jacksonville, Fla.$3.5 billion
2. New York City$2.0 billion
3. Virginia Beach$1.7 billion
4. Galveston, Tex.$1.1 billion
5. Charleston, S.C.$1.0 billion
6. Tampa, Fla.$938.4 million
7. Barnstable Town, Mass.$889.2 million
8. Corpus Christi, Tex.$861.1 million
9. St. Petersburg, Fla.$751.4 million
10. New Orleans$725.1 million

Here is the link.



I found the 14 inch tall jar shown on the left below.  I've been thinking it might be for motor oil.  It reads CAPACITY 64 OUNCES AT THE RIM.    A much prettier Tiolene Motor Oil Jar is shown on the right.

Can anyone identify the jar on the left?

14 Inch Tall Found Jar on Left.  Tiolene Oil Jar on the Right.


No change in beach conditions.

Happy hunting,

Thursday, June 20, 2019

6/20/19 Report - Sacred Heart Imagery and Cobs. Mystery Object. Sharing and Passing on Finds. Shoe Polish Bottles.

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

Here is a mystery find from John C.  As you can see it is only an inch or so across.  He says the center appears to be copper.

What do you think?

[ UPDATE:  This one has been solved.  Will have that for you tomorrow.]


Sacred Heart Image.

There is a good chance that you've found a pendant or item bearing the image of the Sacred Heart.

Here is an article on its symbolism and meaning.


I've addressed the issue of heart-shaped cobs to some extent before.


I have often talked about labeling and storing your finds.  It is easy to forget the details over the decades, and someday you might want to pass the items on to someone else who will appreciate them as much as you did.  In that case it will be helpful to have the information to pass along with the items.

Maybe one of your children or a relative or friend has a special interest in some of your finds.  Share what you know and what you have learned about your finds.  Share the joy and passion with people who appreciate your finds.

We all know that you can't take it with you. so you might want to leave special items to those who appreciate them.

As you probably know, a young adult member of my family passed quickly and unexpectedly away about three weeks ago, and the process of taking care of the estate has barely gotten underway.  The person that passed didn't have very much at all.  He didn't have a house of his own or hardly any possessions, unlike many detectorists who have put together nice collections over the years.  He had very little money, yet the government requires those who are in mourning to take care of the distribution of the estate, whether it is big or very small.  Just because you don't have much, doesn't mean it will be easy.

One of the best things you can do if you have a checking account or any kind of financial account is make sure you have a beneficiary or beneficiaries designated.  That can make things easier.

If you want your cherished finds to go to a good home, get a proper will made by a good attorney in your state or residence.  We all know that there are some people who will appreciate old coins, arrow heads, old bottles, or artifacts, and there are some who know nothing about them and who will throw valuable or cherished items in the garbage.  In Florida, if you have a will, it is easy enough to specify who you want to get your favorite items, but you do have list them and specify who you want to get them.  The list will go along with the will.

A minimal funeral can cost thousands of dollars.  You might want to provide for that so your loved ones don't have to deal with the details and expenses while mourning your loss.

I know that people don't usually want to think about it, but you might also want to determine who gets your favorite finds.  It is better to deal with it when you don't really have to.

Most of all, enjoy your finds today and share the information and joy that you got from them.


If you old enough you probably remember shining your shoes with Esquire shoe polish.  I remember doing it before church every Sunday.

I've been organizing my bottle finds and photographing them.  I've been doing mostly the more common and less valuable ones first.  

Here are a couple Esquire shoe polish bottles.

Esquire Shoe Polish Bottle.
I don't usually keep the screw top bottles, but some are so nicely embossed that I do keep them.

There would have been a cap with an attached dobber to apply the polish.

Below is the type that I remember using.

Esquire Shoe Polish Bottle
Front and Bottom.

Bottom of Same Esquire Bottle.

From Wikipedia -

During the Great Depression Sam and Albert Abrams, chemists and entrepreneurs from Brooklyn, took over an ailing boot polish maker, the Knomark Manufacturing Company of Williamsburgh, Brooklyn.  In 1938 they purchased the Esquire brand.  After a saturation advertising campaign in 1944, the company became the best selling shoe polish manufacturer in the US... In the late 1950s, they sold the Esquire brand and the 1914-built Esquire Building on 330 Wythe Avenue in Brooklyn. In 1957, Revlon acquired the Esquire brand which made annual sales of 15 million dollars. Revlon sold the Esquire shoe polish brand and other Esquire product brands in 1969...

You can see "KNOMARK INC." on the top of the bottom, but it is in the dark area.

I like the older bottle barrel shaped bottle much more then the more recent bottom one.

I'm adding some of these to my TGBottleBarn.blogspot.com web site.

Funny how you can find local history laying around everywhere.


No change in beach conditions.

Happy hunting,